Will Work For Free
A Blog About My Experiences in Volunteer Work

Why I Feel Good About Volunteering… And Beyond!

You hear it all the time; volunteer work is very rewarding, it is a great way to give back to your community, if you have the time to help then why don’t you?

These, in my opinion, are all valid statements.  Volunteer work is rewarding, it is a good way to give back, and if you have the time you should help.  But not everyone does, even if they may want to.  Maybe they think the whole thing sounds a little to hippy-dippy and not really their scene, maybe they don’t know where to go or what to expect, or maybe they just don’t realise how much fun you can have and what you can learn.

I will admit, my first time doing volunteer work for a non-profit in San Francisco was to craft a story for my magazine class.  Like a journalist, I wanted to get in there and capture a scene, to be an outsider looking in and then transcribe it to paper.  It was a organization I was fond of, don’t get me wrong; but I may not have ever gone if it had not been for needing 2,500 words and ten human sources. 

Well, shit, even my second time was for the purpose of a story; but I swear since then, I have been going on my own accord.  The only journalistic agenda I had was the inescapable, hard-wired one in my head.  Oh yeah, and now this blog.  But that’s different.

It’s fun.  There are cool people, some cute girls, food, beer (sometimes), I learn a lot about what I am doing; and I get the satisfaction one can only gain from a day of manual labor.  (note* my first time was not manual labor, but a fundraising event for Nature in the City)

So now I’m sharing my experiences; shedding some light and transparency on the world of volunteer work in hopes that I make it sound cool, so that other people will be tempted to give it a shot.

There is no shortage of volunteer opportunities in San Francisco.  The city is ripe with compassion and go-getter attitudes.  Those two attributes combined have bred several organizations that put together monthly, weekly and even daily opportunities for people to give their time in the name of helping people and nature.  And like my self, others are spreading the word and sharing their excitement through news letters and blog posts.

Nature in the City is a non-profit organization that works to maintain native ecology and remove invasive plants from fragile habitats within San Francisco. They are the first organization I hooked up with and they continue to offer volunteer work and promote themselves through their newsletters and volunteer notices.

Rebuilding Together SF is another non-profit that I have recently stumbled upon. Several of their volunteers keep blog entries about the work that they do. Here are a few links to some of their recent entries.

Rebuilding Together and the Ghostbusters

It’s That Time Again… Or Is It?

Wonder What To Do About Graffiti?

I’m excited that so many people are willing to offer their time to help people. In a world that I feel is so tainted by the human condition, it is refreshing to know that people care about each other, about nature and about separating themselves from the hypocrisies and cruelties that dominate mainstream media and in a lot of ways, day-to-day life.


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