The act of volunteering is crucial for nonprofit organizations. Volunteers not only reduce costs through their devoted work to the company but they typically provide extraordinary service to clients, since they share a passion for the organization and its mission.
According to Custom Development Solutions Inc., recent studies estimate that about a hundred million people volunteer each year with an annual value in the range of $150 billion. In other words, many organizations would cease to exist without volunteers.
However, the organization isn’t the only one benefiting from such services. Volunteering is a two-way street and participants equally benefit from the work they contribute. Below are three benefits volunteers receive as a result of their service. These benefits can be used as a recruitment tactic to encourage growth in volunteerism.
1) Personal Growth
Volunteering can expand your horizons and utilize existing skill sets, while also giving you the opportunity to develop new ones. Whether it’s your marketing background, computer expertise or people skills, volunteering can help you grow in your career path and add developing skills to your resume. You can also use volunteering as a way to explore a career change (some lucky volunteers land jobs from their volunteer experience).
2) Contact with Clients
People volunteer because of their passion to give back to an organization they have a personal connection with. In other words, the work is rewarding. One of the most rewarding is the contact with the individuals you connect with while on the job. As a volunteer, you can directly see the benefits that your work produces, whether you’re a mentor, helper or everyday participant. Seeing your actions make a positive difference for others is a strong motivator to continue serving.
Even though volunteers aren’t paid, serving offers other intangible rewards. First, volunteering can increase self-esteem. It feels good to know that you’re contributing to a worthy cause. Volunteering changes your perspective as well, helping you find new appreciation for the things we all take for granted. Another benefit to serving is the ability to diversify your network, since the organization gives you the opportunity to collaborate with people from different cultures, ethic groups or socioeconomic backgrounds. Volunteers also have the chance to meet new people and make connections. It’s an opportunity to connect with others who share your same interests and learn from those who are more experienced. Lastly, volunteers have fun! Working toward something you have a passion for gives you the chance to do work you love.
People volunteer for many reasons, but it’s always for a purpose. When you benefit from achieving such purposes, it becomes a positive snowball effect that helps everyone involved.
Written by Karly Oristian- Marketing & Communications Intern.