With most of us leading super busy lives, it can seem difficult to commit to the idea of volunteering – giving your time and energy to a cause without financial reward. However, volunteering is important for many reasons, and it doesn’t have to take up too much time. Volunteering is important because it offers essential help to worthwhile causes and communities in need. Volunteering provides countless social, emotional, physical, and professional perks. In fact, the benefits of volunteering not only extend to the community or organization, but to you, the volunteer, as well.
- Volunteering can be a great first step into a new career.
If you’re trying to get exposure or experience in a new field, volunteering can help you develop valuable connections that may improve your job prospects. Even if you’re not currently considering changing careers, volunteering can be a great opportunity for you to practice important transferable skills used in workplaces across many industries, such as teamwork, interpersonal communication, problem solving, and organization. These are the top skills that employers are currently looking for, so volunteering can be a great place to improve those professional skills while also serving your community. Since you can add volunteer experience to your resume, donating your time can also make you more competitive in the job market.
- Volunteering can improve your overall well-being.
There are countless numbers of ways in which volunteering can have a positive impact on your emotional health. Volunteering can increase your self-confidence and provide a natural sense of accomplishment. Volunteering can also relieve stress by providing a meaningful connection to another person in your community. Being a volunteer can also provide you with a sense of pride and identity. When you give back altruistically, you are keeping your community in mind and putting them first, even if it’s only for a few hours every week. Maintaining this selfless attitude shows great strength of character and integrity as you demonstrate your commitment to others. The more you give, the happier you will feel.
- Volunteering is important for physical health.
Carrying out volunteer work could increase physical activity among those of us who aren’t normally very active. If you are looking to get involved in volunteering and you want to become more active, then you can volunteer at a school or a recreational center as a coach, or at any sporting events that require you to physically move around. Not only will you be giving back to your community, but you will also be improving your physical health. Numerous studies have shown that becoming physically active can lead to a decreased risk of premature death and have a positive impact on increasing one’s life span.
It’s clear that the benefits of volunteering are huge – both for yourself and your community. If you’re considering volunteering, think about which causes you’re passionate about, and look into organizations that advocate for these causes. If you’re looking to get involved with fellow UConn members and alumni, visit UConn’s Community Outreach page to see what events the university is currently seeking volunteers for. If you don’t find any opportunities that you can fit into your busy schedule, then feel free to sign up for a Career Coaching appointment to explore more volunteering options with a Career Coach and discover the one that’s right for you. You can also schedule a resume critique to discuss how to add your existing volunteer activities to your resume. Take the first step to start giving back to your community today!