Volunteering not only bolsters the strength and effectiveness of your local community services, but can provide you with a great sense of self-fulfillment. Being a volunteer for a service, cause, or event that you believe in can put you into contact with people who share the same passion and sentiments as you, and can expand your network of empowered relationships. If you cannot provide your physical presence to a cause, you can lend your support through other avenues such as donating finances or goods.
What is Volunteering?
Volunteering is when a person willingly uses their time and labour to perform community service for no expected compensation. Volunteer positions can require a specific set of skills, or can require nothing more than a positive attitude and a willingness to help. Volunteers can be used to help provide medical services, emergency rescue/support, support to civil and social causes, and a massive variety of other areas of service.
The Importance of Volunteering
Helping Your Local Community
Your local community contains and provides the essential day-to-day services that you utilize to improve your quality of life. Something you may not realize is that even when you are not directly involved with the provision of these services, you are also an essential part of the systematic workings of your community. Making purchases and using services can help support small businesses and provide them with a sense of engagement with their customers. To take this further, community members can further strengthen their local community services by volunteering. By directly getting involved with community services through volunteering, you are helping to further improve the quality of life for others in your area. The process of volunteering will end up circling back to benefit you and will help you live a more quality, comfortable, and fulfilled life.
Protecting the Environment
Protecting the planet that we live on and use for resources can be a large part of community service. Helping your community cut down on waste and implement more eco-friendly systems through volunteering will keep the area you live in clean and beautiful. You can do a great deal of help through individual efforts to be more eco-conscious in your daily life, but volunteering for an organized environmental effort in your community will exponentially improve the quality of life in your area. Volunteering in any capacity to help the environment will help set up future generations for success and will ensure that the environment that they inherit can take care of their needs.
Gaining Experience and Making Connections
Volunteering is a great way to gain experience in a field or industry you are interested in. Typically, to be a volunteer you will not need the same experience or designated skills that a paid position requires. If you can get some experience through volunteering, it can help open up opportunities for paid work in the same industry or field.
You will also be able to meet many empowering people through volunteer opportunities and make worthwhile connections with them. Along with gaining experience, being able to network and connect with many different people can give you an advantage when looking for paid work.
Pros and Cons of Volunteering
- Helps your local community in different service areas
- Protects the environment
- Make meaningful connections
- Gain experience
- Achieve a great sense of fulfillment
- Expand your knowledge of certain industries, fields, and services
- Learn how to work with a team
- Bolster your resume
- Improve and mature your character and personality
- Chances to volunteer abroad
- Can be time-consuming
- No monetary compensation for your efforts
- Volunteering abroad can be expensive
- Finding the right volunteer position can take a lot of time and effort
- Some volunteer positions require a large amount of commitment
Other Ways to Help Your Community
If you cannot provide help through volunteering physically, there are other options available to help your community.
Donating goods is a fantastic way to help those who do not have the means to purchase necessary products and services receive the help they need. Donating food and clothing are two simple ways to stay active in community services without having to volunteer your time towards specific commitments.
If you have the means, making a monetary donation can be another good way to provide people with the help they need. Donating money to different causes has never been easier due to the fact that many organizations accept donations through their websites.