Volunteering is beneficial to people in many different ways. From making connections with people in the community to developing interpersonal skills, volunteerism and community service help people establish balanced lives. Here are some of the main reasons why volunteering is important and how it can benefit people.
The overarching benefit of volunteerism and community service on its face is the good that’s done by serving others; plus, it feels good. It provides the opportunity to see things from other points of view, such that people will be able to better appreciate diverse human situations and use them to inform their own perspectives.
Another benefit of volunteering is the development of skills and habits that can help people become contributing members of society. There is a great advantage in practicing the leadership, problem-solving, time management, and communication skills that are part and parcel of volunteerism; it can be the key to future success.
Spending time volunteering also can help people make valuable connections in the community. Networking in this way is a great benefit because it allows people to meet and work with others in the “real world” to make an immediate difference in the world.
There are also benefits of volunteering and community service in terms of health and wellness. People don’t typically think about this, but volunteering can be very good for one's physical and mental health. Because volunteer endeavors and community service projects often involve physical activity (e.g., clean-up of public green spaces, etc.), they result in things like improved cardiovascular health and lower blood pressure for many people. Mental health benefits of volunteering often include a decrease in overall stress and anxiety as well.
There are numerous volunteering opportunities in Austin, TX, whether you are interested in supporting literacy initiatives, serving in soup kitchens, or helping the homeless. For example, one of the top Austin nonprofits helping the homeless is Art from the Streets. This partnership of concerned community members gives people living in homelessness a way to develop as artists, offering a safe location for them to create and opportunities to display and sell their artworks at the organization’s annual art show, as well as online. Run by a volunteer board of directors and other volunteer supporters, Art From the Streets provides these transient artists access to a pathway to self-determination by means of the sense of achievement, social connections, and income generated through the pursuit of their art. For more information about ways you can help, reach out to the Art From the Streets team to learn more.
Art From the Streets is an Austin, Texas-based 501(c)(3) non-profit organization that was established in 1991 to give transient people a way to develop as artists and to use their creativity to climb out of homelessness. Purchasing artwork supports the artists directly. Donating to our program helps us to offer a free Open Studio for the homeless and at-risk.