Volunteering brings us together as a community. Growing up in a diverse society, you will meet different point of views towards the concept of “volunteering”. The first type consists of people who consider charity works as a waste of time, and that they can invest this wasted time in much more important stuff. Type two are the people who constantly make up excuses to avoid this act, having in mind that volunteering requires a lot of time. Type three is the shy persons who do not take the initiatives alone to work on the field. They do not know from where to start and how to fulfil the action; they just need guidance and they will be fine. Type four which is the best so far, are the people who believe in charity, they believe in changing the world through this step; they feel thrilled when they draw a smile on the less privileged persons’ faces.
Volunteering is a way to feel better about yourself; it protects you from depression and anger. Through it, you get to know new people, step out of your comfort zone, enrich your mind about how others are living and, have the chance to spread the positivity. Nevertheless, most of time, the activity chosen will reflect what you are interested in and passionate about.
We all dream of living a good life, empty of sorrow and a well-structured community. We have to stop doing nothing and waiting for everything to become better. The first step we should achieve in reaching our bigger goal of having a good country should be eliminating this huge gap between rich persons and the less privileged ones. This can be fulfilled through directly going on the field and performing some real actions.
Indeed, volunteering does benefit the people in help, but studies shows that it can bring a bigger benefit for the volunteer himself:
1- Fearing Failure
For students who are afraid of volunteering fearing the distraction from due homework; this is NOT the case. Volunteering improve brain functionality by promoting excitement and boosting energy inside you. Furthermore, being able to manage your time between these activities and your studies will develop responsibilities that if you can handle, you will be successful, no doubt. It is all in organizing your life.
2- Gaining required life skills
It is not something new that experience will for sure gain you skills. Nothing is more important than expanding your worldview so that you could learn how to deal with different perspectives. No matter how much you say that you can handle this situation, it is not fully proven that you can unless you really experience it; the pressure you are put to while facing it will surely lift up your confidence. You will get to know new people, make new friends and, stay out of bad peer pressure that sometimes lead to bad behavior.
3- Self-esteem and Confidence
Whatever you do in life, you will face many challenges and obstacles; only through overcoming those by learning from your mistakes and taking nothing personal you will achieve success. To be led to confidence, you must develop your skills in dealing with different situations, express your thoughts, services, ideas and feelings; which in turn yield to self-esteem. You will know when you are confident enough to step into a room without comparing yourself to others, whereas focusing on developing your own self.
4- Stepping out of the “Comfort Zone”
We as humans always tend to search for a zone where we are comfortable in and, with no need of doing any effort. However, an effective and successful person will surely know how and when to step out of this zone and explore everything around. We must exploit opportunities given to us. You never know, maybe while engaging in an activity, you will find yourself more into it than you have ever thought.
Especially youngsters who are unable to find what they are passionate about, search! Engage in different types of activities, see where you see yourself best; what suits your character and passion!
5- Contagious actions
Who does not dream of living in a well-managed country? However, a very low percentage is working on solving this situation for us and for the next generation to live happy. We all studied that we should not throw garbage on the floor, yet we as well see people throwing garbage from their car’s windows. So children watch everything you do. By giving back, helping the needy people, protecting your own country by taking actions, you will show them how important volunteering is in making a difference. The satisfaction you gain after an activity, will surely encourage others to make a change.
By Rana Ziad Bassaj
– Family First Adolescent Services. Activities for Teens: Developing Strong Behavioral Health. WEBSITE. https://www.familyfirstas.com/FeedItem/Activities-for-Teens-Developing-Strong-Behavioral-Health/
– Jeanne Segal, Ph.D. and Lawrence Robinson (2019). Volunteering and its Surprising Benefits. WEBSITE. https://www.helpguide.org/articles/healthy-living/volunteering-and-its-surprising-benefits.htm?pdf=13391
– Smith, Holmes, Haski-Levenhal, Cnaan, Handy, & Brudney (2010). Motivations and Benefits of Student Volunteering: Comparing Regular, Occasional, and Non-Volunteers in Five Countries. WEBSITE. https://repository.upenn.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=1165&context=spp_papers
– Joongbaeck Kim & Manacy Pai (2016). Volunteering and Trajectories of Depression. WEBSITE. http://citeseerx.ist.psu.edu/viewdoc/download?doi=10.1.1.1018.4025&rep=rep1&type=pdf
– Jens Detollenaere, Sara Willems, & Stijn Baert (2017). Volunteering, Income and Health. WEBSITE. https://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0173139