Volunteering or giving back by helping others not only benefits your community, but can also have significant health benefits for you too. According to a variety of studies including this one conducted in 2013 found that 94% of people surveyed say volunteering improves their mood and 96% felt volunteering enriches their sense of purpose in life.
Some of our bloggers have shared their experiences giving back to their communities and why they encourage others to do the same:
“As a student or alumni of Mohawk College, we often go out into the community while in school or after graduation to give back to our community. In fact, as Canadians we are naturally inclined to give back in this very organized manner and 56% of Hamiltonians volunteer – which is above the national average.” – Margaret Lintott
“Those mandatory 40 hours of volunteer work in high school must have really worked on me. It instilled in me a lifelong passion for helping others and taught me the value of donating ones time to a good cause.”
“You can never start volunteering too early and are never too old to stop” – Kat Cullen
“Every city must also find the balance of focus for community outreach and resources for the many social service agencies and programs that are in a constant state of need. Hamilton is no exception. I recently had the opportunity to lend an afternoon to a group of not-for-profit agencies at the annual Hamilton Spectator Media Relations Boot Camp. Acting as one of the ‘PR Camp Counselors’ for the day, I helped explore potential opportunities for the agencies to pitch their unique stories to reporters. This effort taught me about how our community is working; and about the tremendous amount of work being done in so many neighbourhoods throughout the city.” – Brent Kinnaird
“Volunteering is an excellent experience and allows you to use a variety of skill sets. Dedicating any time to a charity organization will help to tighten the sense of community in your neighborhood, and connect you to a wide variety of people in you area.” – Amber Richardson