Value of community service in a student’s life
Many people hope for a better world, but few actually work towards it. In a world affected by inequality, poverty and environmental degradation, it’s great to see several young people trying to bring about a change. Many schools and colleges have made community service part of their curriculum. For example those doing the IB curriculum, or enrolled at St. Xavier’s College, Mumbai, commit to a specific number of hours of community service.
There are many opportunities for the youth to volunteer or work in the social sector. There are lakhs of NGOs ranging from small to large. You can choose to get involved full-time through Fellowships or part-time alongside work or college. Even if you’re stretched with college commitments, it is always a good idea to take some time out for someone else. Here’s why:
- Learn about different issues: Social work will give you an opportunity to learn experientially. You can explore your interests while working for the community. You can serve the community in different ways such as caring for the old and and teaching underprivileged kids. You can help plant trees or save water. You can travel to remote areas and help them with their resources. Whatever the issue might be, learning by doing is the best way to learn.
- Build your resilience: While trying to make a difference, you will encounter many challenges. Through this, you can learn to look at the brighter side. You will need to remain optimistic and keep everybody motivated even during hard situations. You will acquire the ability to have a vision and translate that into action. Since you will have to manage your school or college activities along with community service, you will learn how to work under pressure and prioritise your tasks. This will increase your ability to multi-task and problem solve. According to a UNDP report, teacher volunteers have become more employable.
- See better satisfaction levels: By giving of yourself, you will gain satisfaction and happiness. According to research from the London School of Economics, people who volunteer weekly are 16% more happy than those who don’t. Every drop makes the ocean. Even one person’s effort can make a difference to someone’s life. You can inspire others and eventually bring about a change at a larger scale. This will make you feel happy and fulfilled.
You should consider your time commitment, what kind of impact you want to make and the skills you possess before you choose the volunteering activity. So get inspired and start solving society’s real problems! You will get an opportunity to leave a better world behind.