A good friend of mine once told me that most people are not born volunteers. However, we are hard wired to help others when asked.
I’m asking. The world needs you and you need it. We are all built for community!
The United Nations Volunteer site says it well:
“People the world over engage in volunteerism for a great variety of reasons: to help to eliminate poverty and to improve basic health and education, to tackle environmental issues, to reduce the risk of disasters or to combat social exclusion and violent conflict. In all of these fields, volunteerism makes a specific contribution by generating well-being for people and their communities.”
The most successful, dynamic, impactful people in the world spend a lot of their time helping others and helping causes that have an impact.
Iconic motivational speaker Zig Ziglar often said: “You can have everything in life you want, if you will just help other people get what they want.”
It is clear that volunteering helps literally billions of people around the world. I’d also say it most helps the person who is volunteering!
- Volunteering is great for mental health. The moment you focus on others instead of your own challenges, your life will change for the better. You will become more self-confident and grow your sense of pride, identity and accomplishment.
- Volunteering is great for physical health as it gets you moving!
- Ideally, volunteering will expand on your dominant talents and interests and leverage them for the good of others.
- Volunteering will expand your network. networks of volunteers accomplish more than any of them could do on their own. They also form valuable friendships and even lead to great new business or employment opportunities.
- Your financial health will probably improve if you volunteer! When you are busy helping others, you will be less prone to “shopping therapy” because you will be too busy and fulfilled to be distracted by empty consumerism. You will thus have more disposable income to be generous with those causes you care about.
- You will build your sense of legacy. Volunteerism is all about helping causes that are much bigger than any one of us alone. Very often, the deep lessons we learn as a result will form the character that we will become known for and pass onto future generations
I would encourage you to google the volunteer resource centre in your community and explore the many different ways in which your community is waiting for your unique gifts. As an example in our community, Richmond Cares Richmond Gives is a phenomenal resource and a valuable “hub for volunteering and giving.
If you haven’t taken our “Retireability Score” yet, now is a good time, as we address eight different dimensions of a successful retirement that volunteerism can be a huge part of.