I Need to Volunteer
What is it about volunteering. Yes it’s on everyone’s to do list. Actually doing it though, that’s another thing altogether. It seems many of us can’t decide where to volunteer so this item just goes uncompleted. Maybe now is the time to make a decision and sign up to volunteer. Fall is fast approaching, and maybe that will free up some extra time to do some volunteering. There are numerous nonprofits and even for profit companies that continually ask for volunteers on a regular basis or for special projects. How should we decide where to volunteer? Most of us don’t take the time to think about why we should volunteer. Does volunteering make us better people? Is it something that makes us feel better about ourselves? Do companies take advantage of people by using a volunteer? Why should we volunteer? Here are some things to think about when getting ready to volunteer.
1. Volunteering keeps us connected and is a way to meet new people. Volunteering is a way to make new connections and move outside our existing sphere of people we interact with.
2. Volunteering makes us feel good about ourselves. We give back to the community which gives us satisfaction.
3. Volunteering lets us share our talents with others. We actually fine tune our existing skills. Sharing our skills with others is a great way to improve our existing skills.
4. Volunteering lets us help others. We are doing a good deed and providing a necessary service for someone in need.
5. Volunteering meets the needs of organizations that can’t afford to pay to otherwise have these needs met. Our volunteering efforts help stretch the resources of many companies who wouldn’t be able to provide these services otherwise.
6. Volunteering allows us to hone our skills in areas of interest that we wouldn’t otherwise be able to do. We can provide services using skills we want to develop or learn.
7. Volunteering looks good on our resume. Yes this is self serving but it is true.
With all the good things volunteering can do for us, there are some things we should focus on when looking for the right volunteer opportunity. Our ultimate goal should be to find a volunteer position that we ultimately enjoy.
1. Look for the right fit. Decide ahead of time what type of position you want. Do you want to volunteer for a long term position or do you want to volunteer for a one time project that may be recurring on a regular basis. How much time can you invest? Do you want to work with a group of other people or focus on a project that doesn’t involve working with a group.
2. Volunteer for something that you enjoy. Yes volunteering can be about you when it comes to what you want to do. Make sure to volunteer for something that you are passionate about and want to invest your spare time in.
3. Volunteer where you feel you’ll make a difference. Don’t waste your talents in a position that you don’t find fulfilling. You do enough other things for friends, family and at work, do something that gives you a sense of accomplishment.
Some of the reasons we volunteer are better than others. Think about why you volunteer and where you would like to volunteer and then take that first step. Just make sure it’s the right fit for you and you are doing it for the right reasons for your situation.