RSG has recently volunteered at the Humane Society of Tampa Bay, while we were there we learned that they are looking to build a new facility to help shelter the animals that are in need of a forever home. During our volunteer efforts I got to thinking, “wouldn’t it be great if we could do more”? We wanted to help the shelter reach their goal of building a new facility, so we decided to hold an event! On October 4th we held a Cards Against Humanity Tournament to raise funds. During the planning process for the event, I starting thinking about reasons people don’t volunteer more often and the main reasons I came up with were based on limits that you put on yourself or that you think you have. Limited time, limited funds, whatever the reasons might, its usually just an excuse. People make time for things that they care about and for the most part, people REALLY care about themselves. It might sound rude and maybe a little selfish but I don’t think there is anything vehemently wrong about being excited about how volunteering could benefit your personal life. Whether your reasons for volunteering are selfless or selfish, the overall benefits outweigh any personal gain… That being said, here are 7 slightly selfish reasons to volunteer!
Psychologist have coined the phrase “helpers high”, this is the feeling of euphoria after you engage in a charitable action. This feeling can come to you after you donate money or spend some time volunteering for any variable cause. The science behind it? The endorphins released in your brain can make you feel a sense of accomplishment and less stress (also good for your health).
If you’re volunteering, there’s a good chance you will be thrown into a group. Use these people as an opportunity to network and to make friends! This is an opportunity that is often overlooked. If one of your goals is to build up your network, find a charitable organization that links with your field. You’ll be able to meet industry-specific professionals that might be able to help you get a leg up
Traveling is a huge goal for a lot of people. What better excuse to ask Facebook for money to travel than telling people it’s for a good cause. Start a GoFundMe and let people know that you’re going to help build an orphanage and you need couple bucks to help you book your flight. Spend as many days as you can helping the community and use that opportunity to get a better understanding of the culture.
Learn Something New
Whatever charity you’re working with you’re bound to learn a new skill. Throughout my years I have volunteered at an animal shelter where I administered medical treatments (supervised by a veterinarian). I’ve volunteered after Hurricane Katrina in New Orleans where I took part in construction projects to help rebuild the city. And I’ve helped out with a daycare center in West Virginia that provides free childcare for working families that can’t afford it. I’ve also volunteered at a food bank that organized and groceries together for families. If you want experience with something new, research organizations you can volunteer with and learn a new skill!
Look Better on Resumes
This is a clear and easy benefit. Volunteer work makes you look good in front of your future employer or schools that you might be interested in going to. It can also help with scholarships, grants or financial aids. My senior year of high school l had to complete 75 hours of volunteer work to get a Florida Bright Futures Scholarship, which, in turn, helped me lowered the number of student loans I needed. It’s a win win, I got a degree and a family got free childcare.
Marketing Your Business
There are a lot of people and companies that might not have ever heard of your company if it wasn’t for volunteering. Whether it’s a face to face conversation about who you are or what you’re doing or if its an ad on facebook promoting an event or something that you’re apart of. MAybr you’re holding an event for the humane society and someone sees cutes dog so they click on your post. They see your name and wonder what you do, then they click on your profile and maybe even click through to your website. Maybe they will use you in the future, or remember to refer you to a friend. What ever the game plan is volunteering can absolutely gain you the exposure youre looking for.
The cycle of paying it forward…. If you do something good for someone they will, in turn, go out and do something kind for someone else and so forth and so on. Eventually someone, somewhere, might do something nice for you. Whether you believe it’s Karma or a butterfly effect type of situation (not the Ashton Kutcher kind where everyone dies) it is all ripple effect and can change so much without you even realizing it.