ATHENS ORACLE

The Importance of Volunteering

Photos by Barna.com

Photos by Barna.com

Natalie Winston, PR Manager

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The basis of volunteering is the idea of giving back to the community, while also experiencing joy from giving to others. Many members of the Athens High Drive School community have been seizing opportunities to give back.

According to Volunteers of America, a non-profit organization, college admission officers like seeing students volunteer for personal reasons, it shows students have a real connection with the work that they are doing.

Volunteering has many benefits for the environment, people in the community, and the person as the volunteer. Volunteering can keep someone mentally stimulated, reduce stress, and provide them with a sense of purpose.

Researchers at the London School of Economics have even found that in people who volunteer weekly, 16 percent of them happier than when they were not volunteering. Having the opportunity to give back to the environment or community can give you a feeling of fulfillment.

“When I went to the Brown Bag Ministry, I went to hand them out and I realized, wow this is making a difference,” said Matthew Parker, senior.

This is not an uncommon feeling from students who choose to participate in opportunities to volunteer. Parker has been a volunteering with his church since he was in the sixth grade. Parker now volunteers with Teen Core of Cary, Athens Drive High School Key Club and National Honor Society.

Schools that have clubs and provide access to organizations where students can volunteer are allowing their students to give back and to find out what kind of volunteering interests them the most. Athens Drive offers opportunities to volunteer in many clubs including Appalachia Service Project which is a Christian Ministry Organization that focuses on improving the lives of individuals in the Appalachian Mountain region of the United States. They also offer opportunities to volunteer and record hours at Key Club, an international community service organization.

“Getting to know the other board members and the other people in the club, and really getting to see them do positive things in the community,” said Hairston, Key Club administrator.

Hairston is not the only one who likes the feeling and acknowledgement of good doing. Volunteering often gives people a feeling of completeness and happiness after they have done something helpful for their community. Hairston experienced this feeling in her childhood volunteering and now experiences it through guiding Key Club members in making a difference.

Hairston was a Girl Scout from ages six to seventeen, and has been volunteering for a large portion of her life. Although Hairston does not get to volunteer as much as she would like anymore, she has no doubt done her fair share for the community.

The Girl Scouts do a large amount of volunteering, and offer opportunities for others to volunteer in order to help out the girl scouts. Opportunities such as those provided by the Girl Scouts and other organizations such as Teen Core of Cary and church group volunteering are seized by students all throughout our school year round.

“A lot of people like to be involved in there community, which is why people do community service anyway. To be a part of a group that is doing something good and positive,” said Hariston.

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