Volunteering is great for our health – it makes us feel good while helping others in the process. Volunteers are generally healthier, happier and have lower rates of depression.
Research shows people who volunteer have better health and wellbeing. Some in the field, say it makes them happier, gives them a sense of self-worth and helps them sleep better. Volunteering can help us live longer, improve our brain function and reduce our risk of heart disease and depression.
Up for a challenge? Maybe you haven’t been in the workforce for a while or just starting out, a great way to get that resume looking good is to try something you’ve never done before – you may even uncover a hidden talent! It’s also a great way to explore new career opportunities. Chances are prospective employers will be impressed too!
Volunteering helps us connect with others; there is no doubt about it. It expands our social network and is great for building a professional network too. You never know, if you are looking for employment, it may help you find a new job!
People over the age of 65 contribute the highest number of hours to volunteering. Without their generosity, our economy wouldn’t function. If you’ve recently retired or not ready to leave the workforce, it’s a great way to keep in contact with others and stay busy.
Loneliness can be detrimental to our health. Volunteering breaks down social barriers and improves the wellbeing of volunteers and the people they work with. You may even find some lifelong friends. Just being there for another person can make them smile – it’s a win, win all round!
Whether you’re an introvert or an extrovert, we could all do with a confidence boost at times. People are grateful for any help, however big or small. Helping others also increases our self-esteem.
Many people who have received help in the past, like to give something back to others. Maybe you may have been in hospital before and want to dedicate some time to other patients – such as helping with personal care, reading or driving them to medical appointments. You may have a loved one has had a serious illness and you’d like to raise funds for support or research. Whatever you give is always appreciated!
Helping others not only builds our esteem but also widens our understanding of others. It gives us a chance to make a difference to those who are less fortunate. Get out of your comfort zone and immerse yourself in other cultures and communities – such as teach English to migrants, mentor refugee children or deliver meals to homeless people. In some instances, we can give others a voice and help raise awareness.
If you’re new to volunteering, you may be wondering what can you possibly do. Don’t be put off, organizations are looking for every skill imaginable and many are willing to take on people and train them up.
So, what are you waiting for? Go out in your community and have some fun!