Imagine if everyone we met was happy, understanding, caring, and actively helping each other. How great would that be? The truth is that it is very possible and it can be realized through volunteerism. Volunteerism is an act of kindness done to transform one’s local community without been compelled or expecting any form of remuneration in return. It is transforming individuals and societies at large through tackling developmental challenges. It is about ‘giving’ and ‘receiving’ – that is, giving one’s time, resources, energy and skills; and receiving through satisfaction, enhancement of one’s skill-sets, career development, etc.
I believe volunteerism is a duty of every citizen who does not just want to see things change but also want to be part of that change. From building people, growing one’s capacity and network, raising funds; volunteering needs a dedicated heart. It is throwing in some charitable spice into every facet of life as a form of giving back to one’s local community. Although an outbreak of a pandemic situation (war, civil unrest, disease outbreak) seems to inhibit the local volunteerism, with better strategies the power of volunteerism could still be fortified and maximized through other avenues such as online or remote platforms, and use of some other technological tools. As a professional, it improves one’s creativity, efficiency, confidence, and sharpens one’s leadership skills, etc. In the quest to volunteering virtually and trying to create an ecosystem to make the volunteering task more fun, simpler, and fulfilling, career persons sharpen their ICT skills, broaden their professional capacity and network, and consequently makes a better world for everyone. Also, it is fulfilling to be part of a sustained volunteering community.
Today, communication skills, technological proficiency, confidence, exposure, managing emotions have become as important as literacy considering the requirements for today’s socioeconomic success. These skill-sets are mostly not found in the syllabus of most education systems but can be learned through active and sustained volunteerism. Thus, with dedicated, sustained volunteerism, students can be guaranteed an all-round learning fulfilment as well as a smooth transition into an organized professional workspace. Indeed, it is worthy to give in to the benefits of active volunteerism in our society to make the world a better, happier, and safer place.
Written by Emmanuel Aguboshim