Did you know that volunteering is not only good for your community, it’s also good for you?
Volunteer Awareness Week runs from 18 – 24 June, 2017, so this is a great time to think about the benefits for you and those around you.
New Zealand is a leading nation when it comes to volunteering, contributing more than 270 million unpaid hours valued at over $3.3 billion to non-profit organisations, according to Volunteering New Zealand.
By becoming a volunteer, not only will you brighten somebody else’s day, you will also brighten your own.
Here are five reasons to get cracking and get volunteering:
1. It makes you feel good
Helping somebody else or doing a good deed always makes you feel good. Knowing you’ve taken the time to do something for another person without expecting anything in return feels great. It gives you a sense of achievement and purpose, which also makes you feel good. It can help you physically as well by keeping you fit, especially if you are doing volunteer work like tree planting or beach clean-ups.
2. It’s good work experience
Volunteering is great work experience. It gives you a chance to get some experience under your belt, which is especially great for young people who are starting out and may not have had a job before. It gives you a chance to try working in a field you may be interested in or thinking about making a switch to. Volunteer work looks great on your CV. It shows employers you are pro-active and motivated towards helping others for a good cause.
3. You make a difference
Volunteering is so rewarding because you are actually making a difference. You are using your time and energy to do something that positively affects other people's lives, for free. How good is that? It’s such a wonderful feeling knowing that you have helped someone or contributed to a good cause. Which also means you have helped to make our world a better place.
4. You meet new people
Helping out in your community is a great way to meet new people and socialise. It helps you to build contacts, extend your support network and introduces you to people with common interests. Volunteering is a great way to make new friends, especially if you are new to an area.
5. You learn new skills
Being a volunteer is a great opportunity to learn new skills. Whether it’s learning to bake, organise a fundraiser or budget for an event, there’s always something to learn and gain experience in. You can also share your skills with other volunteers. For example, if you come from a marketing background, you could help with advertising for a community event.
By the way…
Volunteering can encompass all of the five ways to wellbeing promoted by the Mental Health Foundation of NZ. When you volunteer your time, you are giving, connecting and often taking notice, learning and being active.
National volunteer week Volunteering New Zealand