Over the Queen's Birthday Long Weekend, I spent five days working at the annual Sheep Dog Trials hosted by my local Show Society. Why? Because I'm one of the many committee members who work hard to make the event successful. And although I was exhausted at the end of it, I enjoyed every second of it.
I'm a volunteer and I love it.
It seems in this day and age, people will only do something if they get something out if it - money or freebies. There are people that just don't seem to want to volunteer. Which is crazy, because without volunteers, a lot of things on our communities wouldn't get done or happen. Just look at your local sporting clubs, youth groups, service clubs, and community organisations - they wouldn't exist without volunteers.
Volunteering is something that has been drilled into me at a young age. Both my parents are heavily involved in our local community and it's just something that I've grown up with. As I've gotten older, I've also started lending a hand. It all started the our local Lion Club - my parents are both member, and so I'd tag along and be there to help (to the point where I've done more and experienced more within the organisation than many Lions members in the community).
Although I'm old enough to join Lions now, it's not something I'm planning on doing just yet (for personal reasons). But my involvement with Lion, through my parents, has allowed me to meet people from all over Australia - I've grown up in the organisation, and it's great to see catch up with them when we can.
It's through my local Show Society that I've really caught the volunteering bug. Again, it was through my parents that I joined the committee - they took on the roles of President and Secretary back in 2008. Now, I've been going to local Shows all my life, entering every single year for as long as I can remember. Now, I was going behind the scenes!
I initially started off just helping mum with the secretary stuff, but it soon grew into helping out in the office on Show Day, and the week before the show. And soon, I was a member of the committee, attending meetings, starting social media accounts, creating a website, elected Chief Pavilion Steward, becoming the society photographer, and essentially the assistant secretary. That may seem like a lot, and at times it can be, but I wouldn't change anything for the world. I've loved every single minute of my involvement with the show society. And although some days (like the Dog Trials or annual Show) can be exhausting, it's all worth it in the end.
As someone who loves volunteering, it's hard to understand why some people just don't want to do it, but then expect these things to just happen. A friend, who I met through volunteering, has a really great motto: if you want to have a valid voice in your community then get involved and volunteer. It's not that hard. It doesn't need to take up heaps of your time. But if you've got an hour or two to spare, then volunteer.
Volunteering has not only helped me meet so many new people that I wouldn't have otherwise, but it's given me great life skills and things that look really good on a resume - customer service, working as part of a team, working independently, being a leader - and these are just from my own experiences. It's also a great feeling seeing something you've been involved in and worked hard on coming together and being enjoyed by other people.
If you are someone who wants to be paid for their time, well you still do with volunteering. Not with money, but with the knowledge that you've done something in your community that will help or be enjoyed by someone. Seeing the joy in someone's face if way more rewarding than money - it's priceless.
So please, have a look in your community at where you can give a hand and volunteer. Without volunteers, our communities lose their backbones, spirits and souls. And if you already volunteer - thank you.
See You Soon!
See DISCLAIMER for information about Affiliate Links