Becoming a Volunteer: What You Need to Know

Volunteerism is one of the noblest pursuits you can do with your life. Martin Luther King, Jr. once told us that one of life’s most persistent questions is regarding what you can do for others. The Society of Jesus’ Jesuits has built multiple schools around the world with ‘Man for Others’ as their school’s motto. Thousands of non-profit organizations around the world are creating better communities through their unpaid service to the poor and to those in need. Through the help of non-profit organizations, millions of people, including victims of their own environment, are given another shot at life.

The act of volunteerism is deeply rooted in different cultures. In the United Kingdom, for example, around 500 purely voluntary hospitals existed during the 12th and 13th centuries. While a lot of these were tired to religious charity, volunteerism still held true even in those days. In the United States, even before the uniting of the States, the forefathers had already established a purely voluntary firehouse in 1736 — paving the way for voluntary firefighters we know today. Banking on patriotism alone, Benjamin Franklin organized the first community-driven effort for social betterment.

Volunteerism now is experiencing a major downslide in the number of willing hands to help. Non-profit organizations and other charitable groups are experiencing a downward trend in the number of volunteers because of the pandemic. As the world slowly grinds its way out of the hole we’ve dug ourselves into, how can we, as prospective volunteers, become fully pledged volunteers and help in the fight we are dedicated to.

Determining Your Cause

People volunteer to different organizations for a wide array of reasons. While the encompassing idea is that you make a dent in society or give something back to your community, having a specific cause in mind will help drive your passion for volunteering. If, for example, you are passionate about animals, volunteering in an environmental non-government organization instead of a pet adoption center. If you care more for caring about geriatric patients than a food program, volunteering in a hospice compared to a food bank and shelter is a better idea. Lack of motivation kills the drive to volunteer by most people. Determine first what you are most interested in for the sake of sustainability.

Determining Your Skills

While you might have the heart to volunteer, the skills you bring to the table might not be compatible with what you are volunteering for. While you are donating your personal time, it might become counter-productive if you volunteer for a program you know for yourself you cannot do.

Picture a person who has physically limiting disabilities trying to volunteer his strength and power in building a house for a housing non-government organization. While we can all admire his efforts, it might be physically limiting for other volunteers as well if they had to attend to that specific person, rather than lending their entire focus, attention, and efforts to the task at hand. Skill determination and compatibility are important to find the perfect volunteering job for you. Make the most out of your time by determining which skill sets you can execute better for your chosen cause.

woman holding a kangaroo

Determining Your Volunteer Portfolio

Oddly enough, volunteers nowadays can be asked for their portfolio for volunteering. One must remember that being non-profit organizations, they have no capacity to screen their volunteers so rigorously. While they value having more hands on deck, having a volunteering portfolio ready will leave these underpaid volunteer organizations a breath of fresh air. While there is a lot of good in the world, there is a lot of evil as well. Most of these organizations have been scammed to the brim by lowlifes who do not have anything better to do. Build trust with them right out the gate with your very own volunteer portfolio.

Determining Your Schedule

Volunteering is similar to having another job. You also have to commit a specific time for it. Even if it is just a few hours a month, to a few hours a day, it would be of great service to the organization if you can determine the schedule you can lend help. A lot of the volunteers’ times are pooled and collated to maximize the number of hands that can lend help at certain eventful times.

The work can be demanding in volunteering. Volunteerism, however, is one of the most fulfilling aspects of life readily available for you to do. Choosing to become a volunteer might be the best choice you make in your life. Volunteer now.

Share post:
Scroll to Top