#WATWB January 2020 -Volunteering Can Help

Welcome to the first We Are The World Blogfest #WATWB  post for 2020!

This month our co-hosts are:

Damyanti Biswas,

Shilpa Garg,

Lizbeth Hartz,

Sylvia Stein, and

Mary Giese.

Please hop on over and look at their posts and any others with #WATWB.

Coming off a conference and in the thick of funerals, I thought I’d not make it this month.  But…. here we are!

I’m leaning on the good ole ABC Life News reporting.

Australian journalist Siobhan Hegarty has provided a story on young people and volunteering.  Right on topic too, for a colleague and I were sharing, on our way back from our conference, how volunteers are truly magnanimous people in the face of adversity.  We were thinking of our State Rural Fire Service (NSW RFS).

Hegarty’s story features a number of examples.  Like Rebecca Cole who joined the SES at age 18.

During the recent bushfires in NSW, Rebecca went on food drops and volunteered at the Queanbeyan fire control centre, operating the radios overnight and logging information for firefighters.

She says being able to volunteer with the bushfire relief effort stopped her from feeling helpless in the wake of the natural disaster.

“It’s so important to be a part of something bigger than yourself.”

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Picture accessed from ABC News life, 23 January 2020. Supplied by Rebecca Cole.

 

Another example includes WIRES (Wildlife Information, Rescue and Information Service).

Hegarty’s report reminds us that long term help matters too. Some agencies may not be able to take our help straight away but following up is a great idea.

She reminds us all that volunteering can help us feel like we are making difference.

According to Lucas Walsh, an education professor at Monash University, volunteering can lead to better mental health and social connectedness.

It may also help alleviate existential anxieties about the future.

“Getting involved in a meaningful activity will help improve your feeling about the challenges arising from droughts, fires and climate change”, he says.

You can see Hegarty’s full article here.


Follow #WATWB  and check out some other posts too!

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