Think volunteering is boring? Think again: whether it’s the extreme high adrenaline thrill of skydiving 3,000 feet from an aeroplane for charity, or showing the next David Beckham how to play football… you are volunteering.
There are thousands of opportunities which are: something you could do, that you are passionate about, or that you can do to make a difference. For example, you could:
- Coach a local football team.
- Do someone’s shopping.
- Be a sports commentator.
- Design a charity’s website.
- Walk someone’s dog.
- Present a radio show in a hospital.
- Help plant trees.
Ok, so we all know you are going to get the ‘feel good’ factor out of volunteering, but what else can you get? Here’s just a brief list:
- Increase your confidence.
- Learn new skills.
- Gain experience.
- Improve your CV.
- Receive training.
- Gain accreditation.
Do you realise many employers now ask what volunteering you have done on their job application forms including the Police, the Fire Service and the Armed Forces?
Dragons Den entrepreneur, James Caan, is a firm supporter of volunteering:
“There is a real need for employers to understand the full extent of skills young people gain through volunteering experiences.”
And lastly, the health benefits. According to Make A Difference Day Survey, ICM Research, 2004:
- Nearly half of all volunteers (47%) say volunteering has improved their physical health and fitness.
- 25% of people who volunteer more than five times a year say volunteering has helped them lose weight (20% overall).
- 22% of 18 to 24-year-olds say volunteering helps them cut down on alcohol.
- Nearly a third (30%) of 18 to 24-year-old smokers say volunteering helps them smoke less.
- 17% of volunteers aged 18 to 24-years-old say that volunteering has improved their sex life.
- Half of people (48%) who have volunteered for more than two years say volunteering makes them less depressed.
Tinchy Stryder, the UK ’s biggest selling male solo artist this year and ambassador for supporting youth volunteering says:
“The work the volunteers are doing to help their community is really positive.”
To find out more about volunteering roles in your area, visit our Search Opportunities page to browse through roles by location, availability and interest.