The Act Of Volunteerism

image - Flickr / Andy Morales
image – Flickr / Andy Morales

Someone asked me why I’m doing such work when I’m not getting any amount of money from it. I asked what work he is referring to, he said the TLY thingy. I just smiled because I myself don’t actually know the reason. Funny as it seems but yes, I don’t know why I’m doing that job. So on that day, I ponder, why?

That question made me think why people volunteer and spend their efforts, skills and knowledge to a certain organization.

Volunteerism is defined by Volunteering England as any activity that involves spending time, unpaid, doing something that aims to benefit the environment or someone (individuals or groups). With this definition we can actually conclude why people volunteer. They do it to benefit the environment or someone. But more than that, do they have any other motives? Yes, volunteers usually say that they are just returning the help or the blessing that the heaven has given them, when they are in need. Some say that they are doing volunteer works to help other because they or their love ones were once in a specific situation wherein they needed help. Reflection as they say.

The classic stereotype of a volunteer is someone who has lots of time to spare and is looking for something to do. This is true; no doubt about it, but volunteerism is more than “spare time” because charities and non-profit organizations are not just a hobby. Volunteers use more than their spare time, they use their hearts to help.

If we will be asked to give a word that equate life that is time. In this world, once you lost your time, you have also lost your life. Therefore the act of volunteerism is an act in which people share their lives by spending their time to do good cause and give provide benefits to the community. It is sharing part of their lives, which is time that cannot be taken back and renewed. It is not just mere spending but investing their time because they know that in the future they will gain something from it – well, in an unsolicited way. They will acquire not money, property or any other things of monetary value but the satisfaction and happiness that this work causes them.

It is proven that helping others increases the level of happiness of each individual so if you want to be happy, help. Offer a hand. You have changed someone else’s life and at the same time you changed your own mood and your life’s perspective.

Susan J. Elis provided several motivations/reasons why people volunteer and its true, people volunteer for several reasons and they are motivated by their personal agendas. The said reasons may or may not be the same reasons why for their retention in the organization. Remember, volunteerism sometimes or most of the time, requires sacrifice. People sacrifice their time, their knowledge and skills for the benefit of others. Commitment and consistency are also necessary factors to maintain and achieve the organization’s goal.

If volunteers share their lives by helping the communities and its composition, for these beneficiaries, it is certain that they are accepting these volunteers as part of their lives. The volunteers are considered agents of change. They just don’t change the status quo of the people but also they change the people’s perspectives about the reality of life. The reality that many of us need help and many of us, even helpless, can still provide help. They make differences. Their activities in any way, whatever organization they are involved in is noble.

Hi, my name is Jay. I love and I volunteer and I was asked why I’m doing a volunteer work and not getting any amount of money from it. I responded with a smile because now I partly know the reason why I dedicate myself to this cause. This organization helped me face my fears and now I’m one of the lovers who fight the fear of the others and persevering to remove the societal stigma attached to HIV. I educate and they learn, they confess and I learn. The cycle repeats but the contents differ. Different stories and different experiences are being shared. Different approach and different techniques are implemented but at the end of the day, it is not my mouth that speaks, it is my heart.

As volunteers, we will continue to share our lives for the betterment of the society where we belong. We will continue to make changes and create happiness and give hope to the hopeless. We will teach you on how to love world, love life and love yourself.

This world was created beautifully because of the beautiful life that God has given to each individual. Dare to make a difference, change for the better. Care for yourself and for your love ones. Share your life to your community, even a few minutes of it, share faith, hope and love to those in need. Cheers! TC mark

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