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volunteer in community

Volunteer in your community. METRO photo

Over the years, this paper has had the pleasure of telling countless stories of members of our community going out of their way to give back and take the time to volunteer. Readers will see in our papers this week that the Guide Dog Foundation is looking for puppy raisers, surely a rewarding and noble role for animal lovers.

We encourage anyone inspired by that story to, as always, consider volunteering. Realistically, we know that most of us do not have the time and bandwidth to raise a puppy for someone else. That doesn’t mean we shouldn’t all do our part to make the world a better place. 

Help someone in the grocery store who can’t carry their bags. Offer to shop for an elderly neighbor or simply stop in to check on them. Volunteering can take many of these forms.

Volunteering is meant to benefit others, and that should be the goal. Signing up for something simply to make oneself feel better, or pat oneself on the back won’t benefit anyone. However, it is often us who feel better, fulfilled and rewarded after doing something for others.

We are lucky to live in a prosperous area. Many of us have been fortunate enough to never know the struggle of not being able to feed our families or pay for gas. Several members of our community aren’t that lucky. The old saying, “We rise when lifting others,” applies here. The more time we take to help those less fortunate, the better off we will be.

It can be difficult to find the correct opportunity for volunteering, in trying to figure out what speaks to our passions. Keep a watchful eye in our papers, social media and among our neighbors for new opportunities, and as mentioned make our own. 

To all of the members of our community that already volunteer, we thank you. We know it can be difficult to find time for ourselves, let alone others. We also know that it’s worth it.

As summer comes near, we hope our readers will see volunteerism as another regular activity to do with our kids, and other friends and family. All we need is ourselves. Start by thinking about what drives us, whether that be animals, hunger, children, the arts, education, the environment and so on. Once we establish that, volunteering for a dedicated cause will connect us with other like-minded neighbors, another added benefit to signing up to volunteer.

We hope readers will consider the benefits we have outlined as to exactly what volunteering affords us. We look forward to the possibility of sharing the stories of generous volunteers, old and new.