Voluntary workers often put in many hours of labour and have a very positive impact on the world while not being financially compensated. However, these volunteers benefit in all sorts of other ways, ranging from improved health and social skills to potential job leads and opportunities to network socially. Volunteer workers also help the world become a better place to live in.
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Volunteering leads to health benefits such as a reduction in stress, depression and physical pain. According to Harvard psychiatry associate professor Gregory L. Fricchione, M.D., these effects could be the result of the body’s releasing of endorphins. Endorphins are chemicals that are released by the human body when something good happens or when a physiological need is met. Emotional health is improved as that individual develops a sustained feeling of calm.
Those who volunteer experience a reduction in the ageing process, according to research conducted by John Hopkins University. Volunteers are more socially, cognitively and physically healthy. The elderly are more motivated to get out of bed when they have a charity to participate in, which helps them get the physical exercise and social interaction that helps slow the ageing process.
Volunteering helps young people understand the circumstances they are in and helps them gain perspective. When others rely on them, these teenagers tend to become more trustworthy. Teenagers are less likely to engage in risky behaviour when they volunteer. These teenagers also spend a lot of time with other volunteer workers, who can be a very positive influence.
Volunteer work can lead to the acquisition of skills that can be useful in a future job. Some non-profit organisations that use volunteer workers have paid positions the volunteer worker can eventually be promoted to. Volunteering is also often an impressive piece of information to put on a college academic transcript or a job resume. Previous volunteer work demonstrates that the volunteer worker has relevant job experience.
Charity volunteering provides relief during periods of grief. Not only does volunteering lead to the releasing of endorphins, which create feelings of calm, but volunteering also gives the bereaved something that motivates them to continue with life.
Volunteering gives people many opportunities to socialise with members of the community, volunteer workers and the needy. The networking that occurs with volunteer work can open up opportunities such as job leads. Volunteering for causes the volunteer cares about can put that volunteer in close contact with those who care about the same things as the volunteer. Volunteering also helps develop and maintain effective social skills. The types of people with whom volunteers interact are diverse, forcing the volunteers to learn how to handle a variety of people and situations.
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