After a long day of work, school, or whatever you have going on, you’re likely looking forward to getting home and relaxing. Your couch is calling your name and you haven’t had a moment to just breathe all day. Life is busy. So, why make time to volunteer? Why spend the energy when you have so little left to spend? It’s simple… Volunteering improves your life. As a volunteer, you gain a sense of purpose, connection with like-minded people, and an upgrade of your skillset. Additionally, the work you do as a volunteer directly improves the lives of others and strengthens your community as a whole.
Gain a Sense of Purpose
Volunteering for something you believe in can give you a special sense of purpose that can invigorate you and enrich your life. Many of us experience times in our lives when we feel stuck in a routine and like we’re just “going through the motions.” We all want to feel like what we do has meaning but perhaps we don’t always get that from our day jobs.
It’s rewarding to know that our actions are making a difference. Mortaza, one of our volunteers, said, “Volunteering with Distress Centre has been an incredibly rewarding experience and I am so glad that I chose to pursue it.”
Perhaps you don’t have the humdrums. Instead, you’re feeling anxious about the state of things. Life has felt particularly uncertain in recent years. It has left many folks feeling lost or burdened by what’s happening in the world today. According to the “worry tree,” asking yourself what you can do about what’s worrying you and then doing it can be a huge step toward banishing that recurring worry.
Taking action through volunteering can be empowering and you’ll likely become less stressed if you are working toward making a difference. One study even showed that volunteering can even lower our blood pressure! So, volunteering, while adding more responsibility to you, can actually lower your stress and improve your mental health. To put it simply, helping people makes you happier.
Find Connection and Community
Volunteering can give you a sense of community which is another way it can improve your mental health and enrich your life. We are social creatures and relationships are critical to our well-being.
As a result of the recent pandemic, many people feel disconnected from their community. Volunteering is one way to regain that connection. This also applies to folks who have recently moved, changed jobs, retired, or graduated. Big life changes, even positive ones, can be isolating. A sense of community and accomplishment is essential for mental health and self-esteem.
Volunteering with Distress Centre will connect you with a team of like-minded people and ensure you create meaningful connections quickly! You can develop a strong support system through volunteering, which helps prevent depression and loneliness. Volunteering boosts your self-esteem, builds your confidence, and enhances your ability to interact with people, which will improve the relationships you have with others and with yourself.
Learn New Skills
Another way that volunteering improves your life and boosts your self-esteem is by teaching you new skills and giving you new experiences. As a Distress Centre volunteer, you receive comprehensive training on topics such as crisis intervention, addictions, relationships, and domestic violence. You learn skills in assessing and de-escalating crises and high-stress situations. You’ll gain and enhance perspectives on self-awareness and develop communication and social skills that will enhance your personal and professional life.
Volunteering gives you a chance to gain training and qualifications that you’d otherwise likely pay to learn. Read Anika’s Volunteer Spotlight to see how volunteering helped her build skills she uses in everyday life. The experience you gain as a volunteer with Distress Centre could jumpstart a career in social work, psychology, and social services. Additionally, being a volunteer looks great on any resume. It could be the thing that pushes your application for your next job to the top of the list of considerations.
So… why volunteer?
The obvious answer is to help people. But you should also volunteer because volunteering will improve your life, mental health, connection with others, and possibly even your career.
Learn more about our volunteer opportunities and apply today: