The Benefits of Volunteering

By Nina Sargent, National Military Family Association Volunteer, USCG Sector Juneau, Alaska

Together we're stronger

Do you ever feel like you might miss out on something? As far back as I can remember, I wanted to see it all, be part of the mix, and experience everything. I have spent a lot of time enjoying life by participating in what was going on around me.

At one point, I realized I was volunteering to help with almost every activity, fundraiser, and special event. You name it—I would be there and part of the action! If there is a meeting, I am making suggestions; a party, count me in for the planning committee; a bake sale, baking is my favorite! I love knowing what’s happening in my community and supporting causes that are important to me.

Volunteering has never felt like an obligation or something I have to do, but rather happenstance. I want to help out, so I raise my hand or add my name to the committee.

Over the years, volunteer experiences have led to other opportunities like meeting new friends, obtaining paid jobs, networking for the future, free t-shirts, and even a visit to the White House. It feels a little selfish in retrospect. I help others and get rewarded in return! I have been connecting with my community, reaching out to others, finding my way through life, and being a part of the team. It confirms that I haven’t missed much.

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