“We are all here on earth to help others; what on earth the others are here for I don't know.” –W.H. Auden
Few things can be deemed as ‘priceless moments’. But having a group of six tiny-tots screeching the Alphabet Song to you with an accompanied impromptu dance is one of them. So is watching a timid twenty-year old woman, married off at the age of thirteen, receive her first income for her hand-woven shawl, and even having a swarm of teenage girls recite Sukumar Ray’s Aabol Taabol happily from memory. It’s true what they say, being a part of someone else’s victory is indeed one of the most humbling and purified experiences in a world of constant cynicism and self-doubt, and that’s what volunteering at an NGO will bring to you – peace and humility.
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So without further ado, here are five reasons why you should volunteer at an NGO.
“I choose to rise up out of that storm and see that in moments of desperation, fear and helplessness, each of us can be a rainbow of hope, doing what we can to extend ourselves in kindness and grace to one another. And I know for sure that there is no them – there’s only us.” – Oprah Winfrey
Your first day volunteering at an NGO will snap you out of the gold-plated hue you’ve been basking in. It will make you realise how lucky you are, instigate you go and thank your parents for having your back through and through. It will make you understand how self-involved human beings can be by abandoning those closest to them and make you think about how petty all of your problems are in comparison. It will make you revaluate your whole life and priorities and look at everything with a new, refreshed perspective.
“One child, one teacher, one book and one pen can change the world.” – Malala Yousafzai
The women, children and elderly will look towards you for guidance and knowledge, and it is your responsibility to make sure that you give your absolute 100 percent to making it worth it, for them. Volunteering at an NGO will instil the qualities of a true leader in you, which is great for those founding a business or heading any kind of organisation because it teaches you to work as one with your team and think of them before yourself. Your end goal will be the success of your team for the people relying on you rather than any individual gains, and that, by itself, is the first step to being a true leader.
“With a generation of younger folks who have thrived on the success of their companies, there is a big opportunity for many of us to give back earlier in our lifetime and see the impact of our philanthropic efforts. – Mark Zuckerberg
From a purely socio-economic point of view, you get to meet the real game-changers of the society. You get inspired by their success stories and have the options of brainstorming with them to create concepts, campaigns and movements that will help change the face of society and bring empowerment to the less fortunate classes. This could be the beginning of a (symbiotic) beautiful friendship.
“The truth of the matter is: you can create a great legacy, and inspire others, by giving to philanthropic organizations.” – Michael Bloomberg
Volunteering at an NGO will make you become one with the people. Pretty soon, you’ll be thinking of ‘them’ before ‘me’ and looking round the clock till the hour when you can go and meet them. It will make you discover a whole new side to yourself, one that wants to help just to see a child’s face light up in the brightest smile or watch an eighty year old believe once again in the power of humanity.
“We’re all in this together. Each and every one of us can make a difference by giving back.” – Beyonce
Working at an NGO will give you the exposure of working with a diverse range of people. Hailing from different social backgrounds and with their individual stories, you may have little to nothing in common with them except the most important thing- the desire to reach the same end goal. That’s what makes a team, a team. Individual wants aside, it is the collective effort of a team of people – however alike or different – who are the determining make or break factors in any kind of project or business. This is where you will understand the true meaning of unity and team-spirit.
So if you do have a lot of time to spare this Dussehra and you’re looking to spend it on a worthwhile experience, volunteering at an NGO is the perfect way to do it.