Brain Scramble

How You Can Volunteer and Help Worthy Causes

At different times in their lives, everyone wants to do something good. Helping is part of what makes us humans and we constantly look for opportunities to give ourselves for the cause of something positive.

When we talk about non-profits, we are referring to organizations like Helping a Hero that provides custom designed homes for wounded US war veterans. Organizations like this give people an opportunity to give back without the idea of receiving any benefit for themselves other than knowing they have done something great for a fellow human.

When people do volunteer, it gives them a deep sense of connectedness and the satisfaction of knowing that there are those who will be there when someone needs a helping hand. Today you can find a near endless variety of charities that serve every type of needy group. So volunteers can pick one or a group to serve.

The most difficult part of volunteering sometimes is trying to figure out where to get started. That first time is always awkward as you try to find the balance between fitting in and doing too much. It can be overwhelming when you see the actual need and compare that to what you can do as an individual. Volunteers often report going into near depression or getting overanxious when they experience the true devastation caused by a natural disaster as an example, or what famine can do to children. The key though is to jump in and realize that your contribution is making things better and to those you assist, you are an invaluable lifeline to hope and sometimes life-saving support.

As mentioned, the charities you can engage with are endless. Here are some things for you to consider when you seek to volunteer:

Local or National Organizations are in Every Town or City

Every town and city has dozens of charities with which you can volunteer. Many of these are local to the city or town and others are national or international charities that have offices in that city or town. Local organizations will serve only the people of the community. They will work with local kids, the elderly, disabled, homeless or war veterans, and the resources including your volunteering will only be used on these local issues. If you are in a city or town where there is a large need for volunteers for local issue focused charities, you should visit one or more of them and help out. Some places like New Orleans that have many natural disasters because of their proximity to the Gulf of Mexico, is a great example. This city is constantly digging itself out of a natural disaster and is always in need of volunteers to assist the victimized. There are many cities around the country like this where flood, fires and tornadoes wreak havoc every year and the need for volunteers is critical.

Similarly, in most big and mid-size cities there is a strong need for volunteers to work on behalf of the homeless and drug affected communities. Our cities never seem to have enough state and federal resources to meet the needs of those affected and often private non-profit organizations will be formed to assist. These organizations are great to approach because they focus on getting things done and are not limited by the sometimes frustratingly slow pace that government organizations almost always encounter. Here, you can do a lot of good.

There is a no wrong choices and any time you give to a charity is needed and appreciated. Consider introducing your kids to volunteering also because it builds good habits and qualities in them.