The Importance of Volunteering
But it is not all doom and gloom, there are many employers that are supportive and that want to employ disabled people.
When I graduated University in 2017 and started the long and difficult task of finding a job, I came across jobs that weren’t accessible for me as a blind person, I had several interviews and didn’t have any luck. I did often wonder whether my disability was a barrier, but we’ll never know. Now I am in a job that I absolutely love, and my employer is very understanding about my disability, they fully support me and ensure that things are made accessible for me.
However, when I was at school, all of my peers had jobs, they were working in shops, cafes and restaurants but these were things that I could never do as I have no useful vision. So, I took up volunteering and let me tell you, it is one of the best things that I ever did, it also looks great on your CV!
I don’t think I would have even been considered for the jobs that I have applied for if it wasn’t for my qualifications and the skills that volunteering equip me with. If you have carried out volunteering and demonstrate this to employers, it shows many assets that they are often looking for. Despite being in employment now, volunteering is something that I still carry out.
Many people have the wrongly perceived idea that volunteering isn’t rewarding because it is unpaid, but it is the exact opposite, volunteering is so rewarding.
But why is volunteering so important?
Many charities rely on volunteers to run their services, including well-known UK charities such as Scope.
I started volunteering for charities when I was a teenager and have volunteered with charities that are very close to my heart including the RNIB, my local society for the blind and writing blog posts for Scope.
Not only are you helping the charity or organisation maintain its services, you are also getting something back for yourself. Without volunteers, charities and organisations cannot offer the services that they want to.
When I was younger, I used to be frustrated that I couldn’t do the usual weekend jobs like my friends, but I did volunteering instead and that has given me so much valuable experience.
Volunteering can enrich your life.
Volunteering can enrich your life in so many ways, it gives you experiences, as well as gaining knowledge about a charity or organisation. You can then take those experiences with you in to future roles.
You can gain connections
These may be both personal and professional, volunteering is a great way of meeting new people.
You may be able to make professional connections that help you get onto the career ladder, or you may make some life-long friendships.
It can enhance your skills
By doing volunteering, you can learn new skills and enhance existing skills such as communication, teamwork, confidence and organisation. By learning new skills and enhancing existing skills means that you can transfer them into a future career. It also can be very rewarding.
You gain a sense of satisfaction
Whether you’re helping someone in your local community, volunteering with an organisation or helping with a local project, volunteering gives you a sense of satisfaction and an achievement. Helping others is rewarding for both parties.
You often get the chance to help others
Helping others is truly a great feeling so why not do something that is great for yourself and that is appreciated by someone else as well? Knowing that you have helped someone makes you feel good about yourself.
Volunteering can help your mental health
Being out and about in your local community or in an office setting can make you feel a lot better. Also, the previous points can also help your mental health as well.
Those are some of the reasons why volunteering is so important. So why not get out there and start volunteering? You never know, it may lead to future opportunities!
Do you volunteer? How has volunteering helped you?
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