Tag Archives: community service

Taking the voluntary out of volunteering


Volunteering is generally considered an altruistic activity and is intended to promote goodness or improve human quality of life. In return, this activity can produce a feeling of self-worth and respect. There is no financial gain involved for the individual. Volunteering is also renowned for skill development, socialization, and fun. Volunteering may have positive benefits for the volunteer as well as for the person or community served.

When is the last time you volunteered to do something? When is the last time you volunteered to do community service hours? Did you truly do it voluntarily or did you do it involuntarily to meet the service hours for your greek organization or an outstanding citation? I have a sense that most of us millennials, I know there are a lot of exceptions, are part of the group that need an outside force or motive to get us to do any sort of volunteer task. I get the sense that most of my generation does volunteering not out of the kindness of their heart, but rather out of self-interests such as meeting hour requirements for organizations or adding it to a resume to improve how people perceive them. However, I also know there are countless of examples of the opposite. These are people who do genuinely do it voluntarily and do not want any sort of personal gains. Unfortunately, this is not majority. But what if we could have these kind of people be the majority instead of the minority? What would that take? Is the only way to get people to volunteer by requiring it? Doesn’t that defeat the true nature of volunteering?

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