National Student Volunteer Week 2021: Why Volunteering is a Great Step Forward For Your Career!
From the 9-15th August, it’s National Student Volunteer Week across Australia – hurrah!
National Student Volunteer Week 2021 (#NSVW21) acknowledges and celebrates student volunteers and promotes volunteering to students and young people across Australia.
If you haven’t volunteered before or are unsure how and why to get started, then this week is the perfect opportunity to learn more and find ways to get involved!
Why Does National Student Volunteer Week Exist?
National Student Volunteer Week (NSVW) exists to allow students to lead others in connecting to their community in valuable and proactive ways.
Students are provided with the chance to explore the personal and professional benefits of volunteering. This includes:
- Gaining work experience: If you want to start exploring different ways of working and use your time to make a difference, volunteering is a great way to learn about the workplace in positive ways.
- Increased confidence and self-worth: Giving back for good causes makes us feel good and a part of something bigger. Volunteering can help to build your confidence, motivate you and develop self-worth.
- Understanding your personal values: Learning more about the world around us and the challenges of others can help us to make informed decisions about the things that matter to us. This is the knowledge we can use to make a difference in positive ways.
- Gaining education around local and global issues: It’s easy to get lost in a sea of online content. One of the best ways to learn about what’s happening in your local and national communities is to be a part of it – volunteering is a fantastic learning experience.
- Building a support network: Having a strong support network is vital for our health. Volunteering is a great way to build an extended network and support others in proactive ways.
NSVW also recognises the considerable skills, ideas, enthusiasm, passion and time young people contribute through volunteering.
National Student Volunteer Week 2021 – Exploring the Theme
This year, the theme for NSVW is leadership, connection; kindness; community – the four things that the organisers see as crucial for successful volunteering experiences and four key things volunteers get from giving their time.
Leadership skills include planning projects, managing time, motivating individuals, giving feedback, and building teams. According to research, volunteering helps develop and improve these skills and other leadership qualities such as problem-solving, mentoring, and effective communication.
Leadership isn’t just about work skills and managing others, though. Volunteering can set you apart as a leader by simply leading by example. When you volunteer for causes you care about and help others; you demonstrate that you’re committed to others and capable of putting thoughts into action.
Connection to others and connection to ideas! Through your volunteer experiences, you have a chance to show you’re interested in causes bigger than yourself, and you’re willing to take action to make the positive changes needed.
Volunteering can also give you a better understanding of the issues you are working within and uncover gaps in the field. This knowledge can prepare you to enter a new area of work or, for those with an entrepreneurial spirit, may lead to developing your next business idea or inspire you to pursue fundraising or create a new volunteer organisation yourself!
Volunteering exposes you to people, ideas, and other ways of doing things you might not otherwise experience or choose to be a part of.
Learning about different ways of life from one of your upbringing helps to increase your social flexibility and expand your worldview. It will also raise awareness of other people’s issues and improve important social skills, like empathy and teamwork.
Volunteering might take you to a new part of your community you have never been to before and give you the chance to help others in ways you didn’t know they needed.
Volunteer programs can allow you to bring people in to your social network you otherwise wouldn’t get to meet. You’ll build many connections that can help you professionally and personally succeed in your community and beyond.
Three Ways to Get Involved This Week
- Check out some online events: NSVW is hosting several events throughout the week, including lots you can be involved with digitally! Check out the full list here.
- Plan your event: It doesn’t have to be huge to make a difference! Even starting a conversation at school and in class could lead to good things! For more ideas, check out this great list.
- Read our blog: If you want to find out more, our blog post all about volunteering is an excellent place to start and includes links to where you can uncover opportunities!