What is Volunteer: Explore the Who, How, and Why of Volunteering on the Road to International Volunteer Day

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“Volunteer” holds deep meaning, inspiring great work. Volunteering is a selfless act of giving one’s time, energy, and skills to benefit others, a group. It is a helping behaviour that requires more commitment. By volunteering, individuals can positively impact the lives of others and the broader community while also gaining personal fulfilment and satisfaction. As we all know, International Volunteer Day is approaching and is celebrated on December 5th every year, and it’s coming. There’s no better time to delve into volunteering and explore its essence. In this article, we will guide you in understanding the who, how, and why of volunteering, shedding light on volunteers’ roles and their impactful work.

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Who is a Volunteer?

Volunteers are unacknowledged heroes who selflessly contribute their time, skills, and energy to positively impact communities, organizations, and the world. Volunteers can be anyone, such as students, professionals, retirees, and individuals from all walks of life, collectively shaping a better tomorrow through their acts of kindness. Volunteering is a voluntary act of an individual or group freely giving time and labour, often for community service.

Role of Volunteer

After learning about who is a volunteer now, let’s understand the role of a volunteer. The primary role of volunteers is to extend far beyond their tasks. Volunteers act as motivations for change, bringing spirit, expertise, and fresh perspectives. Volunteers are crucial in promoting community and solidarity connecting people with shared values and goals.

Volunteer Work: Impactful Contributions

Volunteer work spans a broad spectrum, addressing a myriad of societal needs. Volunteers contribute to positive change, from assisting in local shelters and food banks to participating in global initiatives for sustainable development. Volunteering is not an easy task. Volunteers help needy individuals through their utmost efforts. They often work with various NGOs in India to do more.

There are various types of volunteering. You can now learn about volunteering and gain knowledge.

Volunteering as utilized by service learning programsSkills-based volunteering
Virtual volunteeringMicro-volunteering
Environmental volunteeringEnvironmental volunteering
Volunteering in an emergencyVolunteering in schools
Corporate volunteeringCommunity volunteer work
Social volunteering or welfare volunteeringVolunteering at major sporting events
Medical VolunteeringSeva

How to Become a Volunteer?

After providing detailed information about volunteering in the previous section, it’s time to explain how one can become a volunteer and help those in need.

  • Identify Interests and Skills: Determining your passion and skills is significant.
  • Research Opportunities: You must look for local organizations or use online platforms.
  • Contact Volunteer Centers: You can inquire with local volunteer centres for assistance.
  • Check Requirements: Ensure you must meet specific volunteer requirements.
  • Reach Out to Organizations: Contact organizations directly and express your interest.
  • Attend Fairs/Events: Visit volunteer fairs or events in your community.
  • Volunteer at Local Events: Offer help at specific events or projects.
  • Complete Training: Take any required training sessions.
  • Be Reliable: Commit to your volunteer work and be reliable.
  • Seek Feedback and Grow: Ask for feedback to improve and explore more opportunities.

Why International Volunteer Day Celebrate?

The International Volunteer Day is celebrated annually on 5 December as mandated by the UN General Assembly. It provides a special opportunity for volunteers and organizations to commemorate their efforts, promote their work to their communities, non-governmental organizations (NGOs), United Nations agencies, government authorities, and the private sector, and share their values. Did you know the UN organization International Volunteer Day 2023 Theme is the power of collective action- if everyone did? Additionally, UNV coordinates a campaign to promote IVD annually, building on volunteers’ impact in communities, nationally and globally, for peace and development. This year, IVD recognized the power of collective action: if everyone volunteered, the world would be a better place.

International Volunteer Day 2023 Theme

As per the UNV official website, the International Volunteer Day (IVD) theme is that the world would be a better place if everyone volunteered. Imagine more than eight billion of us volunteering. Limitless possibilities for sustainable development – food and education for everyone, a clean environment and good health, inclusive and peaceful societies, and more. Volunteerism is an enormous renewable resource for worldwide social, economic and environmental problem-solving. As the world faces mounting challenges, volunteers are often the first to help. Volunteers are at the fore in crises and emergencies, often in testing and dire situations.


Why is Volunteering Important? 5 Reasons You Should Know

In the above section, we learned about why International Volunteer Day is celebrated and its theme. Now it’s time to understand why volunteering is important. It is important for various reasons and can positively impact individuals, communities, and society. In this section, you will get the top 5 reasons why volunteering is considered most important:

  • Community Building: One of the most important reasons for volunteering is to foster community and maintain social bonds. However, it brings together people who share common goals and interests, creating a supportive network within a community.
  • Social Impact: Volunteers contribute to addressing societal issues and making a positive impact on the lives of others. Volunteers play an important role in creating positive change and making society better.
  • Personal Growth: Volunteering provides individuals with opportunities and growth. It can enhance communication, teamwork, leadership, and problem-solving skills.
  • Health Benefits: Many Studies have shown that volunteering can positively affect mental and physical health.
  • Professional Development: Volunteering can provide valuable experiences that enhance one’s resume or contribute to career development.

Volunteer days, weeks and years

  • Global Youth Service Day
  • International Volunteer Day
  • International Year of Volunteers
  • Join Hands Day
  • Mandela Day
  • MLK Day of Service
  • Mitzvah Day
  • Random Acts of Kindness Day
  • Sewa Day
  • Make A Difference Day
  • World Kindness Day

Source: Wikipedia

International Volunteer Day

As we approach International Volunteer Day, let’s take a moment to appreciate the unsung heroes who generously give their time and energy to creating a brighter, more compassionate world. Whether you are an experienced volunteer or considering taking your first step, countless opportunities exist to make a meaningful impact on the road ahead. Let’s join the global movement of volunteers and work together to build a future founded on kindness and shared humanity.

On this important day, let’s re-commit to ensuring that all people can lend their energies to shaping a better future for all people and the planet we share. Let’s stand with volunteers, everywhere.

António Guterres

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

When is International Volunteer Day?

International Volunteer Day is celebrated on December 5th every year.

What types of activities can volunteers engage in?

Volunteer opportunities are various and can involve a range of activities. From working with local charities, assisting in environmental conservation projects, and participating in community events to contributing professional skills in education or healthcare, there’s a wide array of volunteer options.

What is the purpose of Volunteer Day?

The UN and grassroots organizations can collaborate to promote compassion and solidarity among government agencies, non-profits, community groups, academia, and the private sector.

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