Five Reasons You Should Dive into the World of Volunteerism

Do you need something to do? Do you need experience? Do you enjoy serving your community? The world of volunteerism might be the perfect fit for you. In the words of Heather French Henry, “volunteering is at the very core of being a human. No one has made it through life without someone else’s help.” Here are five reasons you should become a volunteer for your community from the perspective of a volunteer coordinator.

1. Experience in the Career Field 

Volunteering can have great benefits. I have often worked with volunteers that are students looking for experience in a specific career field. They enjoy volunteering for an organization that aligns with their field of study, which empowers all parties involved. You will gain new skills and become familiar with the processes of the work you are studying or hoping to do. You cannot go wrong when you gain on-site experience. Volunteering will help with your professional development and expands your resume. Acquiring a new skill set is something you can keep with you for the rest of your life, and helping others as you learn is fulfilling. 

2. Something to Do

I often come across volunteers such as retirees, stay-at-home parents, or someone “in-between” jobs, just looking for “something to do.” Finding a place to volunteer can help you fill in the days or times you otherwise feel secluded or not as productive as you think you could be. Volunteering can also provide wonderful mental health benefits.

According to an article by Jeanne Segal, Ph. D. & Lawrence Robinson, research has shown that 2-3 hours per week of volunteer work provides the most mental health benefits when the activity is rewarding. Volunteers in this category have informed me that they feel useful and enjoy giving back to the community. Each volunteer has a personal reason behind their organization, providing a sense of purpose. 

3. New Friends and Social Networks

Volunteering opens the door that allows new friendships and social networking. As previously stated, many volunteers choose an organization for a specific reason. You will meet other volunteers who may have much more in common with you than you would imagine. Years ago, I worked for a non-profit that provided companionship services for the elderly. Many senior citizen volunteers were retired nurses and providers and got along well due to their common backgrounds. This relationship built a new socialization network for them, and friendships abounded. Volunteering also facilitates opportunities to network with local businesses and community organizations, which can help you as a student needing guidance or moving into a different career field. Volunteering for an organization’s special events or on a board is a great idea, as you could make new friends and network within your community.

4. Supporting Your Community

Some volunteers have particular skills or talents that they love. These types of volunteers often give art classes, yoga classes, or music classes. You can find them instructing others with valuable life skills. Sharing your talents with an organization’s population is a true gift of time and supports the community in many ways. Volunteering in this manner can give back to the community you grew up in by providing classes to people who otherwise would not have the opportunity. You may have a lot of experience in a specific area, like fundraising, and could provide a wealth of support to a non-profit organization. Consider the skills you specialize in and how you can help your community as a volunteer.

5. Time for a Change

Sometimes we desire change in our lives; this can be a new hairstyle, vehicle, city, or career. At any point in your life, you can change direction. Volunteering can be a gateway to the opportunity for a change in your life. Although many volunteers find an organization they can resonate with, some want to try something new. Volunteers can work with people of different backgrounds, thus providing invaluable cultural knowledge. You might be interested in a new field of work but have never worked in that field. Volunteering can provide that path. The desire for change in your life while simultaneously helping others is a good reason for you to look into volunteering within your community.

The world of volunteerism is vast. If you want to gain experience, make new friends, find something to do, support your community, or change your life, please consider volunteering. Volunteers are the heart of many organizations and help move the mission forward. Your gift of time will provide a genuine experience; you never know where it will lead you.    

Volunteer at CRIT

If you are looking for a fulfilling opportunity to make a difference in the lives of others, consider volunteering at the Children’s Rehabilitation Institute TeletonUSA (CRIT). Volunteers help bring joy, love, compassion, a sense of community, and a listening ear to our patients and their families. Join us in our mission to serve with an open heart and a big smile. For more information about volunteer opportunities, contact us at