Why volunteer?

Volunteering takes you on an exciting journey – it helps you to grow and develop and also improves your chances of getting a job. You will be part of a good cause, meet new people and help others. You can make the world that much better…

Why make the effort?

By volunteering you may become more a part of your community, learn more about others and gain a whole new perspective on life. You could be in a position to help someone – someone whose life will be better because of your generosity. This will also give you a greater feeling of self-worth.

Before you decide where to volunteer – think carefully about what you want to get from the experience. Which charity messages affect you most? Which causes or issues do you want to be involved with or learn more about? What are you going to enjoy most and what do you already have the skills to do?

Volunteering has a big impact upon improving our quality of life and overall mental wellbeing. Here’s just a small selection of the benefits it brings:

Helping others
Enjoyment
Connecting with others
Keeping active
Becoming more self-aware
Developing new skills

 

Your volunteer experience gives you the chance to learn new skills, some which you might not have otherwise had the chance to try. It is definitely something to bring up at interview as it will only impress.

You can gain as much from volunteering as from paid employment, although the experiences will be different. Volunteering proves a lot of things to potential employers and is an ideal way to fill your time and your CV all at once.

Many volunteer roles either require specific skills or can help you to develop them – for example, fundraising, accountancy/treasurer roles, event organising. Volunteering to do one of these activities can give you valuable experience. Read more about how volunteering can support your career here.

Recent research carried out by the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development has found that over a quarter of UK companies look for a DofE Award in applications when they recruit, above any other recognition programme. The survey also found that 67% of UK companies believed that entry-level candidates with voluntary experience have more employability skills to offer than those who don’t (Learning to Work survey 2015).

Choose a skill you want to develop and see what volunteering opportunities there are in that area.

Whatever, you do, plan and prepare well, stay safe, enjoy yourself and don’t forget to add your experience to your CV!

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