Trends in Modern Volunteering
As new projects attract a larger variety of people than ever before, volunteering is widely discussed as a plausible solution to some of the significant economic and social problems of our society. The world of volunteering is constantly growing and developing, and new trends start taking place. For many, volunteering is still mostly established by the goals of the organizations that they support. This notion is changing – many companies no longer determine what kind of influence volunteers have on the community but let people decide who and how they want to help. Additionally, micro volunteering and involving children, ages 7-14, form as trends governing the future of volunteering.
Focus on the Individual
As volunteer organizations allow their supporters to determine their involvement, companies stimulate empowerment or the enhancement of people’s abilities to make independent choices and convert these choices into desired actions. Project leaders facilitate their volunteers’ interests, and provide a forum where people can impact their communities. Visioneers is part of this trend as it connects businesses to society and aims to inspire people to apply their talents to different community projects.
An expected challenge comes from this shift. Having a personal approach and helping individuals apply their talents can be time consuming. Many organizations also have limited resources, including physical capacity, insufficient funds and lack of time. However, the efforts can lead to long-term commitment of volunteers and thus larger benefits for organizations.
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Micro volunteering and the internet establish a valuable platform to support important causes, both locally and internationally. Micro volunteering can be as time consuming as people would like it to be. It is broadly defined as tasks that are usually done online to help a nonprofit, charity, or nongovernmental organization. Initiated in the 2000s, micro volunteering can involve a large variety of activities supporting society.
For example, writing letters to terminally ill children, transcribing manuscripts, completing articles, tagging photos from events, and conversing about projects are all considered micro volunteering. Micro volunteering will extend to thrilling opportunities for charity organizations to involve disabled and the elderly people who might lack mobility.
Another group of people that has been traditionally excluded from the world of volunteering is children. Nowadays, children are usually protected and not given the chance to contribute their ideas and talents. However, modern volunteering prompts us to examine our communities and find a previously unused sources of ideas and inspiration. Children can bring enthusiasm and creativity to growing projects.
Additionally, volunteering is a perfect way for children to be introduced as productive and engaged members of a community. Involvement in various projects can serve as an effective way to teach children values, stimulate their grown, develop life skills, improve society and encourage a service ethic.
Children who volunteer are less likely to become involved with risky behaviors as adults as they begin understanding the value of life from an early age. Volunteering also serves as experiential education, and lets children apply what they have learned in school. Involvement in a variety of projects further lets children increase their self-esteem and willingness to help the community. Volunteering teaches punctuality and reliability, and children can participate individually, in groups or with their families.
Involving children does require strict supervision of volunteer organizations but it is an investment in the future. As the world of volunteering constantly expands, companies have the responsibility to think strategically and engage citizens in a variety of ways.