Volunteering in the community

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Health Assured team

17 September 2020

It’s easy to take the first few steps into volunteering. Giving up your time for the benefit of others is a great way to give back to the communities around you. You can really make a world of difference with just a small donation of your time—even as little as an hour a week. 

With COVID-19 still hanging about, there are many, many ways you can offer your time and skills to help others.  

  • You could shop for food and medicine, especially for elderly or clinically vulnerable friends and neighbours. This doesn’t just mean physically going to the shops—some older people may be unfamiliar with online shopping, and helping with that could be a great relief. 
  • You could deliver food and medicine. You don’t need a huge van to do this—you can even do it on foot, if you just take packages of medication short distances. 
  • You could volunteer to work at a food bank, or a homeless shelter. These are places under particular strain during the pandemic for various reasons—your help will be greatly appreciated. 
  • You could put your name on a vaccine research study list. Researchers need volunteers for testing the efficacy of the vaccines they develop—while the idea of being injected with an experimental vaccine may sound daunting, this is one of the safest and most scrutinised areas of medical research. 
  • You could contact your local council, and see what opportunities they have. 
  • You could donate blood—maybe not the first thing that comes to mind when you think about volunteering. But blood banks always need fresh supplies, and COVID-19 has made this more difficult. You could make all the difference. 

Why volunteer? 

  • You’ll gain confidence. When you get involved in something with no expectation of reward, you know you’re doing it for the right reasons. And because of that, you’ll get a great sense of self-worth. If you really put yourself out there, and volunteer for things you’re not familiar with, you’ll find yourself achieving even more confidence. 
  • You’ll learn new skills. There are countless opportunities to volunteer in equally countless walks of life. You’re bound to find something that’ll teach you new skills and abilities—and even if that doesn’t sound like something you’re looking for, volunteering adds experience to the things you already know you can do. 
  • You can try a different path. If you’re feeling a little stuck in a rut, volunteering works as a great way to test the water, and see if you enjoy other avenues of work. You might not find your choice of volunteering work to your liking—that’s fine. At least you tried. And you didn’t risk anything in doing so. 
  • You’ll meet new people. Volunteering tends to throw together all sorts—you’ll meet people with their own stories, desires and reasons for doing what they do. And you’ll have something in common—you both chose to do the work you’re doing. 
  • You’ll improve the lives of others. Arguably the most important part of the whole thing—volunteering uses your skills and abilities to make a positive difference. 

 Who can volunteer? 

Anyoneas long as you’re careful, and consider social distancing/shielding guidelines. Even those who are extremely clinically vulnerable can volunteer to work on the phone—this could be tracking contacts, answering queries about testing or even simply volunteering to call vulnerable, lonely people for a chat. 

Any questions or concerns? Contact Health Assured for expert guidance today, or consult our industry leading smartphone app My Healthy Advantage, available now to Health Assured customers. 

 

 

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