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The importance and benefits of giving back to your community

Volunteering your time to support a cause or finding a way to help those less fortunate is something you will never regret. It will enrich your life, familiarise you with your community, and connect you to people and ideas that will positively impact your perspective for the rest of your life. Helping your community is an opportunity for you to grow as a person, to better understand how you fit into the world around you.

The COVID pandemic has left many without jobs and unable to keep a roof over their heads.  I am sure you have noticed how many more people are begging at intersections or how many more people ring your doorbell asking for help.  Now is when we need each other most. We need to help each other in whatever way that we can.

What are some of the benefits of giving back?

Donating your time to support those around you is extremely beneficial, both for you and your community. It is statistically proven that people who volunteer or give back regularly are healthier both physically and mentally. Individuals who have volunteered throughout their lifetime typically live longer and have better psychological well-being. In addition to health benefits, it gives people a sense of purpose. The fulfilling feeling of giving back and contributing to society is unparalleled.

Dedicating time to help others will teach you patience, kindness, and resilience. If you are volunteering in the community you will not only improve your communication abilities by working alongside a diverse team of people, but you will also gain a plethora of other experiences that will help you as you navigate your future. Volunteering may even help you discover a new passion or interest.

Set an example and have the courage to be kind in a crisis

Setting an example is not the main means of influencing people it is the only means.  Be kind and offer of your time and give where you can and those around you will do the same.  Set an example for your children and teach them the importance of kindness and compassion to others.  You never know when you will be in need of someone’s kindness.

How can you get involved in your community or give back?

  1. Donate blood – Blood reserves are very low at the moment.  If you don’t have spare money or food to give this will only cost you a few minutes of your time and will save lives.
  2. Do a spring clean and donate unwanted items to a charity shop.
  3. Visit a local animal shelter and volunteer to play with the animals or with other tasks.
  4. Make a sandwich or two when you are heading out to the shops and donating them to people in the need on your way.
  5. When doing your shopping buy an extra loaf of bread or a few rolls and give them to someone in need on your way home.
  6. Jars Of Hope.  Make Jars of Hope (see instructions below) and donate them to a cause in your area that is collecting them (Google will help you find them).  Or keep the Jars of Hope at home and give them out to people ringing you bell asking for help or hand them out when you go out.

The Jars Of Hope initiative aims to provide families with an easy to make a meal, and one that can feed four people.

You can help by simply filling any glass bottle with a 1/2 cup of rice, 1/2 cup of soup mix, 1/2 cup lentils, 1 unwrapped stock cube and 1 packet of soup mix.

Create a label with instructions: Add 2 and a half litres of boiling water, keep stirring and enjoy.