Zennials should be volunteering more

Photo courtesy of Jim Henderson, Wikipedia

With the holiday season approaching, many people tend to get caught up in their own lives. It’s a busy time of the year with family coming over, saving up money to spend on gifts and the end of the semester approaching for college students.

As Zennials, a mixture of Generation Z and millennials, we are highly active in politics, social issues and climate change. As a generation, we can also impact the less fortunate by volunteering or donating, which does not have to be time consuming or expensive.

Volunteering doesn’t mean traveling to a country far away, giving a large check or donating clothes to a drop-off box. Although all of these are respectable actions to help the less fortunate, there are more fulfilling ways to be involved.

Volunteering your time can be very rewarding internally, but can also have tangible benefits. A study performed by Career Builder says 60 percent of hiring managers see the act of volunteerism as a valuable asset when making recruitment decisions.

Not only will volunteering give you a sense of purpose, but companies respect students who choose to give their time to the less fortunate.

As stated before, there are so many ways to help others without ever having to donate money. A Scouts leader, Keith Hoodiman, 43, works with organizations such as Toys for Tots and various town donations.

“I don’t like to give charities money because I never know what that money was spent on,” Hoodiman said. “There is something more personal about meeting the people that you are helping and seeing the gratitude that they have for you. I am a Scout leader for 7-year-olds and they really love to help the less fortunate.”

As a generation that is consumed by activism, it is important to give back to others. A study done by the national service said that only four percent of college students 25 years or older volunteer each year.

This stat shows that as a generation we are not as involved. Actually, individuals between the ages of 35 and 54 are the most likely to volunteer their time, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

The first thing to do is to find which organization you want to be apart of. When volunteering your time or goods, it’s important that you do research on the type of charity you are donating to. Not all charities are equal and knowing what you are going to be responsible for is important.

If you do choose to volunteer, you want to make sure that you actually have the time and understand what is expected of you.  

Giving back to others, regardless of if they are less fortunate or not, gives you a sense of humanity. Learning to have sympathy for people in difficult situations will give you a better understanding of how easy it can be to fall into needing help from others.

No matter where you donate your time or goods, always remember that other people really appreciate your help. In a society that is filled with selfishness, let us be the generation that gives back to those who need it.