One of the most fun things I’ve done in the last several years in my volunteer activities was in fact the simplest thing I ever did. I was asked to be a Chaperone for a weekend Choir Retreat. My job was simply to be there and make sure that none of the boys in my cabin went missing or got hurt.
The fun was that I got to be there to enjoy lots of singing, music, games, some karaoke, and one of the funniest set of Campfire skits I have ever seen. I had no job other than to be there.
This was one of those time where the simplest act of volunteering made something possible!
( _IHS Choir _ )
Before I get to far, Yes Men can be in Girl Scouts as Troop Leaders and Volunteer and I personally have been a Leader for over 10 years now.
I volunteer to be a Troop Leader to Middle and High School age girls in Girl Scouts. My roles have been as an advisor to Troops, Chairperson for a Council Wide Event, helping to develop new programming for 11 to 17 year olds, and assisting with Day Camps serving 6 – 17 year olds. I am big on volunteering but you don’t have to be.
Now, many of you will wonder why I do this there are several reasons but the three most important are:
- My being there makes adventures possible because without adult support there are no adventures.
- In spite of the rep that teens have in the media they are really great people, appreciative, generous, smart, considerate, and a lot of fun to be around.
- There are moments where a single event will make everything worth it. The look of recognition on a kid’s face when they realize that they CAN do it. The moment when the event/camp is coming to and end and kids will seek you out and personally thank you with words of appreciation and heartfelt hugs.
Volunteering is more than a duty… its more than something to to make you feel good.. Volunteering is something that goes beyond these things.
( _One of the side benefits of volunteering is that I get the privilege of being present for moments of discovery, joy, and friendship in the life of my daughter and that of the other girls. I have done my best to share these moment with their parents through photographs and stories about their daughters when we return from events. I include here a few photos from my years in Girl Scouts to show a few of the special moments. Moments in the Life of a Girl Scout Leader _ )
Regardless of your passion in life there is a volunteer opportunity for you.Volunteering to work with Kids
- Local Schools need tutors, class room aids, people to come in and share about their careers, and many other activities and tasks.
- Local Youth groups like Boy or Girl Guides/Scouts, Campfire need adults willing to support kids in any variety of activities and they have training opportunities to gain skills in things from First Aid to Outdoor Skills.
- Many Churches run youth programs that need help.
The thing to know is that its not a huge commitment. You volunteer once, you can volunteer to be “on call”, you can commit to more substantial activities. And volunteering can come from your passions and resources.
Do you love photography, do you quilt, do you orienteer, do you just have the interest to be there, there are opportunities for you. And sometimes the most valuable contribution you can make is simply being there because when you’re there they get to go.
I have been helping people from as far as back I can remember. From a shoulder to cry upon to far more material support in terms of loaning vehicles, taking people into my home, to simply gifting appropriate things to help them take the next step. The majority of the helping has been in the form of simply listening and being there. But there have been the odd exceptions like, serving papers on a deadbeat employer or driving 300+ miles to rescue a stranded friend.
Even today I volunteer as a Girl Scout Leader and take girls on outdoor adventures from caving to hiking to rock climbing.
Helping is a way of life for me and one of the most rewarding things I do on a daily basis. But then this can be the way of things for an INFP type person.