Content provided by the Health & Wellness Team at GBS Benefits
Busy schedules can make finding time to volunteer challenging. Volunteering does not have to involve a long-term commitment or take a huge amount of time. Even small acts of purposeful giving can help those in need and improve personal health and happiness. Volunteering can reduce stress, combat depression, stimulate the mind, and provide a sense of purpose. It is also a vital part of community building, by bringing people together who are committed to achieving a shared outcome of making their community a better place.
Not sure where to start? Utilize VolunteerMatch, a website that provides volunteer opportunities based on zip code. Filter by interests and add opportunities you don’t see or are coordinating.
Contact your community recreation center, care centers, hospitals, cancer treatment centers, YMCA, boys’ and girls’ clubs, health department, schools, food pantries, family shelters, etc. There are countless places that would be happy for additional hands.
Review the following categories and choose one opportunity to engage in this month:
- Collect: gather school supplies, grocery coupons for local food pantries, non-perishable food items, unwanted clothes, diapers, or personal hygiene products.
- Do: start a free library, walk kids home from school, rake leaves for an elderly or sick neighbor, mow your neighbor’s lawn, foster a shelter animal, donate blood, drive sick or elderly patients to treatment.
- Teach: help kids with homework, teach music lessons, coach a youth sports team, teach people how to register to vote.
- Fix: clean your local park, help neighbors with repairs, spruce up a run-down playground, offer to patch clothes or stuffed toys.
- Host: hold a bake sale, clothing swap, holiday meal, or study group.
- Make: knit scarves or hats, make blankets, put together first aid kits for local shelters.
- Volunteer: share your time at your local library, nonprofit, animal shelter, community center, school crossing, or food pantry.