Student volunteerism and its benefits

By Hazwan Hilmi

“Everybody can be great. Because anybody can serve. You don’t have to have a college degree to serve. You don’t have to make your subject and your verb agree to serve… You don’t have to know the second theory of thermodynamics in physics to serve. You only need a heart full of grace. A soul generated by love.”– Martin Luther King, Jr.

Volunteer is one thing that everyone can be. It is not limited to any group only but it is open to everyone. By doing volunteer work, being paid is not the goal but the most important thing is volunteering gives you an opportunity to change people’s lives, including your own.

The quote from Martin Luther King Jr. tells us that, to be volunteer is not a job that require a good achievements and how much skills that you have but, to be a volunteer just need to have a ‘heart full of grace’ which means the sympathy, concern or sincerity to help people in need. Even this kind of job is open to all, there are limited in number as to who are committed to be volunteers because they are not ready to serve people without fast reward like money. So, this article will share with you what are the benefits that we can get by doing volunteer work. Plus, this article may help you to be a really good volunteer and to be a volunteer with a good intention and mission.

There are so many benefits that we can get by joining volunteer work. First, we can get a bunch of new skills and added values in our life. The example of skills that we can get are communication skill, time management skill, human interaction, and leadership skill. Through volunteer work we are dealing with outside people whom we do not know them. So, if we frequently join volunteering activities we will always have to communicate with them. We can sharpen our communication skills that will benefit us especially for university student.

In addition, our time management skill also can be improved. When we have this kind of job, we will start to manage our time carefully. The more jobs you have the more efficient your time management will be. Sometimes people like to spend their time on things that are not beneficial, but to be a good time manager is to have quality time filled with quality works.

Moreover, through volunteering also, we can develop our leadership skill. A good leader must have both formal and informal knowledge. Formal knowledge is the things that we learn in the class. We have the assessment, we are examined and we also learn from text books. In contrast, informal knowledge is when we get the knowledge through some practices and the experience and human interaction when we put ourselves in people’s shoes.

There are so many added values that we can get through volunteering such as, sympathy, empathy and how to be sincere in whatever we do and all of these are not classroom syllabus. The most important values that everyone should learn and have when doing volunteering is to be sincere. Do not complain when faced with adversity. Al-Quran has mentioned about the importance of sincerity in doing something.

“Whoever desires the life of this world and those are the ones for whom there is not in the Hereafter but the Fire. And lost is what they did therein, and worthless is what they used to do. Its adornments – We fully repay them for their deeds therein, and they therein will not be deprived. (Al-Quran: Huud: 15-16).”

In Islam, everything that we do will be rewarded based on our intention. How sincere we are. So the main challenge to be volunteers is not being paid in what we are doing so that we can easily complain when we face the hardship. So, we believe that the best reward that we want to achieve is the reward for the hereafter. Always steadfast and maintain our sincerity and intention so that we can seek the reward from The Most Merciful, Allah.

The second benefit that we can get through volunteering is experience. Experience is something priceless. Experience will help us to be one of the best candidates if we are competing in the job market. For example, there is one situation where two candidates apply for the same position in the company and what makes them different? The first candidate has a good GPA in his study but have no experience while another one has the same GPA with a lot of experiences. Who will be selected? The answer is the second one.

So, we can see that, experience is everything. Volunteering is an experience that we can get it for free. That free experience will get us bright future. A company will be looking for someone who has the experience and are multi-skilling.

The last benefit that a volunteer will get is joy. We can get joy when we do volunteering. We will feel so happy when we get the chance to help people, to see people smile and to reduce someone’s burden. At first, we will feel tired for sure, but at the end of the work or when we see the outcome of our work, we will feel so happy and excited. People will always remember our help. In addition, after a new achievement that have been done previously, we will feel eager to help other people. That is the power of volunteering.

In conclusion, volunteering is something that everyone can do but not everyone is willing to do. It requires a good heart of people. Someone who is really ambitious to help others. Although we cannot get the fastest reward from people, we will get the most precious thing that not everyone can get – skills, experiences and joy. Volunteering will help us to be matured in our styles of thinking and also to be a better person in the community. ***

photo taken from STEADFAST SUNSHINE PROGRAM- a program that give cheer to the kids in hospital

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16 thoughts on “Student volunteerism and its benefits

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