We’ve heard it said “Who in their right mind would work for nothing?”
In the first place, volunteering is not work and in the second place, about half the population claims to have carried out some sort of volunteering at least once a year.
There are many reasons why people engage in voluntary work:
- To make friends and develop personal networks.
- To improve health and wellbeing, to relax and unwind, to increase self confidence.
- To improve self esteem, to do something worthwhile and have a sense of purpose.
- To make a difference, to improve their community.
- To have fun, to ‘give something back’, to feel good about themselves.
- To share their experience, skills, knowledge, time to benefit others.
- To learn new skills, to gain experience, to increase their knowledge.
- To take on a new challenge, to widen their horizons.
- To improve their job prospects, to ‘try out’ career options.
A survey by Reed Executive found that of the 200 leading businesses in the UK:
- 73% of employers would employ someone with volunteering experience over someone without.
- 94% of employers believe that volunteering can add to a person’s skills.
- 58% said that experience gained in volunteering can be more valuable than experience gained in paid employment.
- 94% of employees who volunteered in order to learn new skills said they had benefited in their job by being promoted, improving their salary or getting their first job.