It may seem like kind of a no-brainer; helping people is just a good thing to do, all around. But for some people, charity work, making a contribution to society and volunteering their time may get pushed to the sidelines in favor of more pressing, personal issues and pursuits, like spending time with people you care about, education or work. Here are a few great things about charity to remind you why volunteering your time and money is such a valuable endeavor:
Working with people
For some charity personnel, the reward for working in charity is the chance to work with people. Not a lot of people are comfortable interacting with others, or even like socializing. However, that’s what charity work opens up to you; an opportunity to meet and work with people from different walks of life, all of whom can end up being good friends and colleagues.
An opportunity to make a difference
We all work so we can make a difference in the lives we live. However, many people feel that their day-to-day work and habits may not be making a big enough difference in the world and turn to charity work to feel part of something bigger. Whether it is through a huge gesture (sizable donation) or small act (making a cancer patient smile), charity work allows you to instantly make a tangible difference in people’s lives. You can’t say that about many jobs. As a charity worker or volunteer, every interaction and conversation will make a positive difference.
Ability to raise awareness
Many of the people who work for charity are people who at some point or another have been afflicted by the condition/situation they are raising awareness for. Cancer charity groups are filled with recovering and former cancer patients, children’s homes are run by adults who grew up homeless, and centers for the disabled have volunteers who have learned to live with their disabilities, and so on. Charity work allows one the platform to raise awareness about a situation or condition that affects them either directly or indirectly. By raising awareness, you educate the scores who are clueless as to the cause, and invite those willing to join the fight to do so.
A sense of fulfillment
Many charity workers, with their qualifications and skills, could get other, better-paying jobs, but wouldn’t go home in the evening with the same sense of fulfillment that they get from working in charity. Working in charity provides that feeling: that extra pep in their step; a reason to get up in the morning and not just go through the motions. How many people in the world can honestly say they are fulfilled by their occupation? Not many.
Every skill is useful
Charities will employ all manners of people, will diverse talents and abilities. Whatever career you choose, you can be sure to find a non-profit in need of your skillset. And if you choose to go back to your career field after years of charity work, future employers will be excited to hire someone who has spent years developing these skills, especially in a situation that helps others.
In charity, good ideas are welcomed as they help to grow the charity even further. Unless you are senior management of a corporate entity, chances are any suggestions you make at a ‘regular job’ will likely take time before they are considered, if at all. For graduates, working in charity provides an opportunity to practice what you have learned, even if it is an unpaid internship. However, the experience you gain there will be very valuable, and will likely propel you to the next chapter of your personal and professional life. Charity work can open the door to all kinds of future possibilities.