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How To Be a Good Volunteer (Part Three) August 27, 2010

Filed under: Volunteering — polyachka @ 12:00 pm
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DO NOT GIVE UP! You will all have moments, when you doubt your decision to volunteer. You will have a serious urge to stop and go back to your normal life and to your familiar routine. Sometimes you will feel bored, sometimes exhausted, and sometimes mad at the people you work with who are not cooperating. You may even feel angry with Cheb for getting you involved in being a volunteer. Talk to others and share your problems because you are not alone. Everyone is going through the same phases, but remember this stage is temporary, and it will pass. Always look forward and remember again why you chose to be there. When you finish the project, you will look back and see the progress and be amazed with the results.

BE KIND to others. This could mean your peer volunteers, the project manager, or a local person. You never know what other people are going through as they may be very vulnerable, sad, or dealing with difficult issues. We all need support. If you see someone going through a hard time, try to make him or her smile, offer help or just share your experience. Sometimes all we need are kind words, and also remember people’s privacy. If they do not want to share, please do not force the conversation. If they do engage you, do your best to understand what other people are going through, even if it’s something you’ve never dealt with yourself. You will get so much credit for being kind to someone. Treat others as you would want to be treated, and you will begin to make friends on this adventure as well.

BE SAFE. If you break your leg or get robbed, it will not make your experience efficient or enjoyable. Be prepared in advance and read about cultural norms and safety rules in the area of your project beforehand. Being prepared also means taking the necessary precautions: getting appropriate insurance policies and all needed immunizations, backing up your computer files, pictures, etc. Do not take unnecessary risks. We want you to be safe, so that you can come back and tell about your experiences to others who want to go and continue what you started.

MEASURING YOUR PROGRESS. Many of you will be looking to measure success of your project participation. Did you really make a difference? The answer is yes. Whether you built a house for someone, created a fund-raising campaign, or made a child smile, you did it – you made a change, you made someone happier and improved the world. Additionally, in the process of volunteering, we are sure you improved yourself by simply making an effort to be a better human.


3 Responses to “How To Be a Good Volunteer (Part Three)”

  1. paperforgood Says:

    Great information, especially pertaining to the type of qualities one should have when fundraising. Our company(which happens to be a fundraising company) actually recommends that individuals make sure that prior to volunteering to be sure that the overall “mission” of the cause or fundraiser aligns with your own beliefs, that you have plenty of support, that you’re willing to be a part of a team and cooperate no matter what, and that your willing to put as much effort as possible to make it happen.
    Good advice.

  2. Roger Garms Says:

    Humor is one of the universal languages. And, believe me, there will be plenty of opportunities for humor in the trial and error of becoming a helpful volunteer.

    If you don’t take yourself too seriously, humor goes a long way in reducing the discomfort caused by the differences between you and the other people involved. Despite the inevitable difficulties, volunteering is fun and humor will help you enjoy it.

  3. […] Please, also see Part Two and Part Three. […]

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