Albert Einstein once said, “Only a life lived for others is worth living.” If you have ever volunteered, you will understand exactly what he meant! While there is no monetary reward in volunteering, we are rewarded in the sense of helping others and feeling positive about life. It even improves our mental and emotional health.
While this alone should be enough to get you out there and lending a hand to those who need it, with Uni on our plates volunteering can still seem unaffordable.
So, why should you volunteer?
You may have always dreamed of being a zoo keeper, however until you work as a zoo keeper, you will never truly know if it is the career for you. Getting some first-hand experience will give you the confidence to be sure that you are going into the right industry for you – one you enjoy and find rewarding on a day-to-day basis.
Someone once said to me, if you volunteer for a job which you think you’d like to go into and you love it, then you’ll like it as a career. If you just like it, then you will tolerate it as a career.
By volunteering, you can find out just how much you like the job, know what to expect and build long-lasting connections.
My volunteer journey:
I am studying in the natural sciences industry to be a National Park Ranger. I have watched films and read articles on being a Ranger, even attended Park events and interacted with Rangers before deciding that it was the job for me.
I was pretty positive that it was the career I wanted to dedicate my life to, however my family and friends suggested that I do a volunteering program to be absolutely certain.
The volunteer program was a six-week course, seven hours a day for five days a week. The volunteer activities included track repair, weeding, spraying, wildlife control, planting, fence repair and border control. The rangers taught me about:
- Bush tucker
- Using machinery
- Occupational health and safety rules
- Flora and fauna, which are damaging or beneficial to the environment
Each day was a learning curve and I enjoyed every minute of it! It turned out to be much to how I had imagined the day-to-day work of a Ranger. I left feeling confident that I would very much love my future career.
It also allowed me to add some certificates to my resume and volunteer experience, which always looks good when applying for future job positions.
I hope you will consider volunteering in your industry – it’s beneficial and you will not regret it!