Here are 5 reasons why you should volunteer in your community!

Rumana Shaikh's picture
Rumana Shaikh

We often find ourselves spending our free time binge-watching shows on Netflix or aimlessly scrolling through social media to while away the time until we have something better to do. Why not have something better to do right now? Ever felt your heart sink while watching a video about those less-privileged than you? People in war-stricken countries, people with lesser resources or perhaps even animals or natural resources that aren’t treated well? Well what if I told you there was a way you could make them feel better and help improve while also making yourself feel better? It’s not like you haven’t heard it before. There IS something you can do. Sure, you can donate money and charity’s great! We encourage it. But you could also just do your part and lend a helping hand to those near you. Even the smallest gesture, the tiniest action could make a difference in the life of someone who needs it. 

How do you achieve this? Volunteer. It’s really that simple. And that doesn’t necessarily mean registering with an organization and traveling halfway across the world to help construct buildings or teach English. All it means is, volunteering your help, your abilities and capabilities. The very essence of the word is to OFFER to take part in something. That something could be of your own making. Even as small an action as that of passing out water to the workers toiling in the hot sun is you volunteering your ability and advantage to put a smile on someone’s face. You could launch a program in your own school or participate in an existing one to educate workers in the building or to organize events for them. Whatever floats your boat. Now that we’ve told you what exactly volunteering means, here are some reasons why you should do it. Besides the fact that it will make you feel good of course. 

1. It helps build character: I could give you scientific evidence but I’ll give you common sense instead. When kids or youth are encouraged to volunteer, they have lesser time to engage in other more harmful activities like smoking, partying, excessive video gaming, what have you. Also, being in the presence of people who might not be as privileged as them might push kids to take a second look at whether their life really “sucks.” Trust me, they might not show it but they’ll probably be more willing to eat last night’s leftovers today after having learned that some people would consider them a feast. Community service is humbling, it put things into perspective and is an actively productive use of one’s time. 

2. You’ll put a smile on someone’s face: Have you ever experienced that warm feeling of joy spreading throughout your body when you realize you’ve done something that’s just made someone’s day? Don’t know what I’m talking about? Try helping out in your community and doing a good deed for those less fortunate and you’ll know what that addictive feeling is like. Making people feel like they’re seen, acknowledged and appreciated, even if for a few moments is a joy unlike any other. For you and for them. It’s also a wonderful way of giving back to those who give society so much with their hard work.

3. It’s inspiring: When you’re out watching people in different situations and positions in life rough it out in their own way, it inspires you to grow and be more ambitious. It motivates you to be more compassionate yet work towards your goals with more determination and resilience. 

4. Better prospects: All the skills you develop as part of your service to the community and the qualities you hone reflect quite well on a piece of paper too. So the next time you’re out in the job market, employers will definitely keep an eye out for someone who cares about all-around development as well as about other members of the community. 

5. It’s a great way to make friends! Volunteering in groups or with organizations will definitely help you make long-lasting connections with people who share the same interests as you and are ready and willing to make a difference in the world. Who knows, one of your co-volunteers might just be your next best friend! 

Qatar has a number of organizations that regularly need volunteers for a variety of projects. Some of these include Qatar Volunteers, Silent Volunteers, QAWS and ROTA. Some schools and universities also have in-house programs to encourage students who help workers in and around campus. These are all great initiatives that will enrich you with fantastic, unforgettable experiences that you’ll definitely want more of. 

Here’s some inspiration for you! ILoveQatar, Qatar Volunteers and QatarLiving recently collaborated on the Summer Cool Campaign where volunteers drove around Qatar handing out water, juice and sunscreen to the hardworkers without whom the country wouldn’t be what it is! Check it out! 

Do you have any places you'd like to volunteer at? What kind of community service are you interested in? Let us know in the comments below! Make sure to like and share — it keeps us going!