Wednesday, September 27, 2006

Why Not be a Volunteer?
By CerebralWaste Published: 27 September 2006 The Gulf Daily News
A recent study concerning volunteering concluded with the following excuses as to why many people don't volunteer.
The most common are: "I cannot afford it", "I have no time", "I have no energy" and "I need that time for my personal use".
Any of these excuses sound familiar to you? Come on, be honest!
Almost everyone can volunteer and it is easer than you think. Volunteering is simply taking what you enjoy and using it in a manner to help other people.
It could be as simple as picking up rubbish while out walking, or as complex as volunteering at a local hospital, animal shelter or group home.
Volunteering is particularly helpful to men, urbanites, those with low income, people in poor health and retirees who don't work.
It helps provide people with a sense of purpose and sense of well being.
Yet many don't or won't volunteer and use the excuses above as the reasons.
As an example, I volunteer one morning a week at the local food bank in my hometown. It is a very rewarding experience helping those who need help.
Like many, I didn't think I had the time or energy at first, but now several months into my volunteering I find myself looking forward to the time I spend at the food bank. It serves almost 100 needy people a week and the three or so hours I spend there are very rewarding and, as a result I am truly a better person for it as well.
This is backed up by a study from Cornell University, which concluded that volunteering will boost your self-esteem and energy and will give you a sense of mastery over your personal life.
Volunteering helps society in general because society gains when people help other people.
Still, sadly most people don't seek out volunteer work. Volunteering should become more of a public issue and institutional support from government and business needs to be in place.
Many businesses in the US give their employees time off to do volunteer work. These businesses have recognised that when people volunteer, a sense of greater societal value and recognition is gained and it makes them better employees.
Volunteering makes you feel good in helping those that need help.
It can also improve your resume/CV, by helping you learn new skills, though giving you "hands on" experience in a new capacity.
Volunteering can and will boost your confidence and in general make you feel better about yourself. It can even give you a foot in the door with a new employer. Positive results from positive action.
If you are passionate about helping people and want to make a difference, think of the single word volunteering.
Look for ways in your community to make a difference and do it.
© Gulf Daily News

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