An hour, 10 hours, 100 hours, possibly 1000, how many hours as a volunteer has purpose? Has the impact that you want to see, feel, experience been shown?
Impact starts the moment we sign up to volunteer. Charities smile with an email appearing in their inbox showing your interest in volunteering, and then the rest is history.
Isn’t that the perception about volunteering?
You give an hour or two and that’s it. Your contribution to society has been rewarding, seeing the smiles of those around you; volunteers, beneficiaries and staff, and that’s all we think about.
Life doesn’t work with that, but we believe it does.
It’s natural to think it. I did, when I first started, but I learned something. I learned that by giving an hour to a cause, the selfless act of giving becomes a memory.
Memories appear, as we appear. We must remember that many causes that we help, feel on their own at times. It’s not only the beneficiaries who feel isolated, charities do as well.
When I’ve received emails in the past from interested volunteers, I’ve smiled. It’s such an adrenaline rush knowing people out there want to help, and think how I felt in the build up to meeting the volunteers to the moment they left or the role ended?
That’s a memory!
I will always remember the volunteers I’ve led and the difference they’ve made.
Difference is much more than the actions at the time. The difference is the greater picture.
If you’re looking to volunteer, know that 1 hour could be the start of a story being told. The story could be a memory, bringing a constant smile to someone’s face, and you’re the reason why that is.