19 October 2005
Volunteering has a meaningful, positive impact on your community. But did you know that it can have many benefits for you too? Here are some reasons to volunteer:
Learn or develop a new skill
Volunteering is the perfect vehicle to discover something you are really good at and develop a new skill. As Mahatma Gandhi said, “Live as if you were to die tomorrow. Learn as if you were to live forever.” It is never too late to learn new skills and no reason why you should stop adding to your knowledge just because you are in employment or have finished education. Planning and implementing a major fundraising event can develop goal setting, planning and budgeting skills. Supervising and training other volunteers helps to develop supervisory and training skills. These are examples of skills that can enhance a career but you don’t have to develop skills with the intention of facilitating your career. Painting a mural or making banners for International Volunteer Day – to celebrate the wonderful and priceless work that volunteers do – could gently push you to discover graphics and art talents. Explore your love for music and learn to DJ (disc jockey) so you can offer your newfound panache to local youth club discos. The possibilities are many.
Be part of your community
No man or woman is an island. We sometimes take for granted the community that we live in. People and societies co-depend on each other for survival but growth of such things as commercialism are seeing traditional values being disregarded. Communities are suffering due to the growth of secular societies but at the same time we can really bridge that expanding gap through volunteering. Volunteering is ultimately about helping others and having an impact on people’s wellbeing. What better way is there to connect with your commmunity and give a little back? As a volunteer, you certainly return to society some of the benefits that society gives you.