AFS Blog

Volunteering is #ForAllAges

Posted on November 20, 2017 | by Alicia Chalmers
Volunteering is #ForAllAges

The Patterson Foundation is proud of the success of the Age-Friendly Festival. More than 4000 attendees enjoyed, experienced, and energized at the first ever in the nation, festival of its kind. This success would not have been possible without the 140 volunteers who ranged from ages 11–80-something.

An interesting thing about the word volunteer is volunteer is both a noun and a verb as defined by the Introduction to By the People: A History of Americans as Volunteers by Susan J. Ellis and Katherine H. Campbell:
Volunteer, verb - To choose to act in recognition of a need, with an attitude of social responsibility and without concern for monetary profit, going beyond one's basic obligations.

Volunteer, noun – from the perspective of the doer: Someone who gives time, effort and talent to a need or cause without profiting monetarily.

Volunteer, noun – from the perspective of the recipient of service: Someone who contributes time, effort and talent to meet a need or further a mission, without going on the payroll.

Whether are we looking at volunteering as a noun or a verb, it is a word about doing, giving, and helping. It is always important to appreciate and be thankful to volunteers as well as looking at the benefits of volunteering. Volunteering is the ultimate connecter in any community that brings people together for a common goal of making a difference. Volunteering offers vital help to people in need, worthwhile causes, and the community, but the benefits can be even greater for you/me/us, the volunteer(s). Volunteering and helping others can help you reduce stress, combat depression, keep you mentally stimulated, and provide a sense of purpose which is needed at any age. While it’s true the more you volunteer, the more benefits you’ll experience, volunteering doesn’t have to involve a long-term commitment or take a huge amount of time out of your busy day. Giving in simple ways can help those in need and improve your health and happiness.

Thanksgiving is a time to be thankful, and I am thankful for volunteers who share their time and especially for all of the volunteers at the Age-Friendly Festival who helped in unique and meaningful ways. In big and small ways, YOU impacted our community. When we volunteer, we work with our hearts. That heart is what connects us to others. Thank you for being the change we wish to see in the world.


SHARE THIS POST

Leave a comment

You are commenting as guest.