It’s National Volunteer Week, which is a good time to dispel some common misconceptions about volunteering. Here are a few:
It is tough to find time to volunteer. If you have a lunch hour, you have time to volunteer. Head to a nearby school to read with children, or tutor a struggling student in math. If that's too time-consuming, just walk down the hall at work. United Way of Central KY can help organize on-site volunteering to build kits – such as school supply backpacks, and hygiene or literacy kits – to distribute to elementary schools, shelters and families who may not have many books at home.
Volunteering will add stress to my life. Actually, working with or for others, staying active and expanding your worldview adds up to a healthier lifestyle. There is a significant correlation between volunteering and good health.
Volunteering is dirty work that no one else will do. Sure, sometimes people paint school walls and plant gardens, but they also help make critical decisions as board members or members of UWCK’s grant allocations team (Community Investment Team).
Volunteering takes time away from family. When you bring the kids along to volunteer, you strengthen family bonds, instill empathy and create wonderful memories. As in the past during UWCK’s Give a Day for Hunger, families came together to pack nonperishable foods for Central Kentucky’s children benefiting from the Backpack Program. Rather do something at home with the family? Consider building a little library which may be donated to an early childhood development center.
Problems are so big; I can’t make much of a difference. UWCK offers a range of activities in which volunteers can see the difference they’ve made. Just ask our volunteers at Way to Work helping coach individuals and families out of poverty through employment – together we’re changing lives.
No matter how you choose to volunteer your time, we appreciate those individuals and families who lend their time, talent, and brawn to causes they care about in our community and around the world. THANK YOU for stepping up – in person, online, with coworkers and your family. Thank you for showing what it means to LIVE UNITED.
Central Kentucky Serves Volunteer Center: You can check out dozens of other volunteer opportunities available through other agencies and organizations in our community at Central Kentucky Serves. Just go to www.centralkyserves.org.