Volunteering is the ability to ‘’be the change you want to see in the world’’. I think that everyone has their own hidden potential of making a real and positive change in their community. It only takes a little ‘’dose’’ of willingness, and enthusiasm to positively change someone’s life and make them happier. That is the ‘’heart’’ of volunteering. The more people we help, the more happiness we create. And, this happiness we create is also mutually shared, because volunteering, as an act has his own positive ‘’side effect’’. It is the side effect of helping us to become a better person in the future.
So, how volunteering has really change me into becoming a better person?
Gaining Valuable Skills
I was a volunteer in the National Youth Council of Macedonia. It was my first time as a volunteer, and I can confidently say that it was a unique, and unforgettable experience for me. We were gathered as a team to represent the council body of NYC of Macedonia. The council body was called Youth Inspirational Group, and as a team we were chosen to collect suggestions and recommendations in areas, where young people were, and still are very actively engaged. These areas were education, youth unemployment, youth standards and local youth councils. Each area demanded to be publicly represented, and explained in order for us to collect the best possible advices, and information for her future progress. So , as I was presenting and discussing on the certain topic , I unconsciously started to improve my communication skills , and growing new skills of teaching , and educating. But , besides the improvement of my socio-communicationall skills , I also became better in my time management, and developed strong organizational skills, by organizing the events and consultations where the discussion occurred.
Meeting new, and interesting people
During the period of volunteering I had the opportunity to meet with a lot of people. By meeting with different people , I recognized that many of them were from a different nationality, and culture. And that was the most interesting and existing part for me. Meeting and becoming friends with people with a different cultural and religious background enabled me to open my mind, and realize that there are different cultural practices around the world and every culture has her own significant and valuable customs that always need to be appreciated and respected. It was an amazing intercultural connection, that later became a close friendship, that last until today. I learned a lot about their traditions, their beliefs , and they also learned something about the Macedonian culture. It definitely made more broad-minded , understanding , and considerate towards other’s people culture, and religion.
Making a positive change in the community
It is incredible to recognize, and see that even one spoken word can really make a difference and influence in establishing new and effective regulations, that in the future will be of great benefit to young people. When we were discussing about the possible ways of improving one of the youth areas , every spoken word was written, collected, and send to the public institutions as a youth recommendation. This action for me personally , was a small step, but with a bigger impact. And , I know that we can’t immediately say we’ve changed the world, but by doing this we have definitely began , and we are certainly one step closer. So, yes teaching, educating, helping, or donating are the ‘’small’’ steps to ‘’climb’’ if we want to make our community and the world a better place to live.
Being a volunteer taught me that everything is a learning experience, and while you are a volunteer you never stop learning. Developing new skills and discovering new, interesting cultures helped me to achieve an intellectual and personal growth. I developed new insights, and perceptions about myself, and the world around me. Feeling needed helped me appreciate the little things in life like a simple smile from someone’s face, powerful enough to ‘’jump’’ beyond every cultural, and national barrier. Also with time I noticed that I felt more grateful towards everything I have in my life. It was like a reminder of what really mattered in life, family , friends , health , and of course volunteering, because only volunteering can make you realize how humane , and noble it is to help another human being, while giving you the amazing satisfaction of knowing that you are finally making a difference in the world.
This article is written by:
Ljupka Janevska – FB profile