Volunteering: 4 Unexpected Benefits

Posted on 04-19-2017 by
Tags: health , volunteer week , job search , Pro Bono , skills development , volunteer

helping hands

We all know how volunteering our time can makes us feel.

Volunteering makes us feel like we are contributing to our community, makes us feel needed by others and helps us feel more productive. And we know all of that feels good!

So it’s a given that we really should be finding time in our lives to volunteer, right?

It’s hard to get involved in our community when is seems like there isn’t even enough time in the day for your family and work.

Why Make Time for Volunteer Work?

There are several studies out there that say that volunteering has quite a few unexpected benefits. Here are just a few:

1. Helps with the job search.

When you volunteer (especially with multiple organizations throughout the year) your network grows exponentially. You never know who you are going to meet and what opportunities you will come across while volunteering. Not only that, but hiring managers are now valuing volunteer experience on resumes much higher. In their eyes, it means that you are motivated and value hard work, even when you’re not getting paid for it.

viewing resumes

2. Hone skills that can be used in the workplace – or even develop new ones!

Volunteering the skills you already have is a great way to develop those skill sets and will definitely help you in the workplace. And who knows! Maybe you will learn new skills from other volunteers and organizations that could help you professionally.

3. Actually make you feel like you have more time.

I understand how contradictory this statement sounds, but hear me out. Cassie Mogilner, assistant professor of marketing at the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School, conducted a study and says, “The results show that giving your time to others can make you feel more ‘time affluent’ and less time-constrained than wasting your time, spending it on yourself, or even getting a windfall of free time.”

checking your watch

4. Can help keep you healthy, not only mentally, but physically too.

Research by the Corporation for National & Community Service shows that “those who volunteer have lower mortality rate, greater functional ability, and lower rates of depression later in life than those who do not volunteer.” So getting out and moving on a volunteer project with an organization in your community can help you stay healthier longer!

The good news is that it doesn’t take hours and hours every week to reap some of these benefits. The commitment doesn’t need to be huge – just a few hours a month will make a world of difference not only for yourself and your family, but it’ll really impact the lives of those you are helping so much more than you realize.

 

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