Have time on your hands this summer? Summertime is a great time for many, especially students who may have a few months of free time, to volunteer and reap its rewards. Spend this summer volunteering - you won't regret it!If you’re one of the lucky ones with more time on their hands in the summer, consider keeping your skills (whether life skills or more academically driven) sharp, or gain new ones, meet new people and have new experiences.

Think of all the positives to be gained from spending your summer gaining valuable volunteer experience versus, say, sitting by a pool. Some students need to volunteer as part of their high school requirements. There are many reasons to volunteer this summer but here are a few that could benefit you, not just this summer but for the rest of your life:


Foot in the door

Volunteering can be a great way to get into an area of interest in your life – and to learn new things. If you have an interest in humanitarian projects or emergency management, volunteer in this area to help build necessary skills to eventually work in this area. Poolside: you may learn (again) you need to re-apply sunscreen to avoid sunburn throughout the day.


Gain experience

Experience gained through volunteering not only benefits your character, but it also looks good on your resume. It shows future employers how dedicated you are in your interests and highlights the various skills you picked up along the way. Poolside: you may gain a few pounds from consuming the chips sitting beside your lounger.


Diversity bonus

Volunteering shows an interviewer that you are willing to help your community, diversify your skills and can work well in a team. Volunteering can provide a different set of skills and shows what interests you have outside of work. It demonstrates commitment and compassion and this experience can help you build your resume. Poolside: you may have a tan to show.


Team player

Not only are you willing to help out others by volunteering your time, but it shows you are willing to join a team to make an impact. Working in a team is a crucial skill and many employers look for that in their candidates. Volunteering can also provide a lot of great training opportunities that you might not otherwise get sitting in a friend’s pool this summer, for example.

Enjoy some time by the pool this summer but spend more of your time helping yourself and others.

Find a volunteer opportunity near you: www.redcross.ca/volunteer

 
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