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As a busy mom, you probably don’t think you have time for one more thing on your plate. While you might have good intentions, you may not make time to volunteer — although you should.
You want to set a positive example for your children, but performing acts of kindness provide benefits beyond instilling moral values. Here are nine reasons moms should find time to volunteer and the perks they’ll reap by doing so.
1. You Expand Your Science Knowledge
Do you know what to do if you and your child encounter a mountain lion on a remote hike? You would if you volunteered at a nature center near one of their habitats.
Museums, science centers and state and national parks always need help to guide tours and perform maintenance. You’ll meet like-minded adults — a huge perk when your friendship circle consists of other moms — and you’ll learn something new each time you report for a shift.
2. You Get Insight Into History
You read about things like the Spanish flu pandemic in school, but what was it like to live through it without the advantage of homeschool and telecommuting? If you work with a senior who still remembers, you could gain valuable insight.
Nursing and residential care facilities often need volunteers to drive community members to appointments and provide meaningful social activities. You can bring smiles to faces who might not see many other visitors and get an inside glimpse into historical events when those you work with share their stories.
3. You Improve Your Math and Accounting Skills
It’s a frequently heard complaint — schools don’t teach critical skills like how to file taxes. As a result, thousands of people turn to community tax help each year for help submitting their 1040 returns.
You get much more than the chance to help others — you learn a valuable skill that can translate into cash. The skills you acquire let you hang out a shingle as a bookkeeper, a gig that can provide sweet secondary income or even replace your nine-to-five.
4. You Get Your Hands Dirty
Maybe the thought of volunteering indoors holds little appeal while COVID-19 remains a risk. Why not get out and do good in the great outdoors?
If you don’t have a community garden in your area, start posting on bulletin boards to generate interest. If your children are old enough not to wander into traffic, you and your crew can adopt a stretch of highway to keep tidy — you’ll get a groovy sign with your name on it in exchange for your efforts.
5. You Get Your Body in Motion
Lack of exercise leads to countless medical woes each year. Working out prevents scores of diseases while helping you maintain healthy body weight.
Volunteering forces you to get off your couch. If time is your main objection to helping others, mom, why not select an active opportunity? Shelters always need folks to take their homeless hounds for daily walks.
6. You Improve Your Cooking Skills
If you consider yourself a regular Martha Stewart in the kitchen, then you know you need all the tips you can get. What? That’s right — even the top minds in any industry learn from others.
Those who adore cooking can find plenty of soup kitchens anxious for volunteer help. Plus, you get to meet others who love nurturing their fellow humans through food — hello, recipe swap.
7. You Create Cleaner Play Areas for Your Kids
Does your local playground resemble the outskirts of a landfill? The tiniest tykes will play with anything, but their toys shouldn’t consist of trash.
Take along some bags and bins and launch a cleanup — others may notice and take part. Turn it into a game and see who can shoot a basket using a pair of grabbers.
8. You Set a Positive Example
Think about what your child does when you perform household chores. If you are like many, they probably imitate you doing anything from baking to vacuuming.
Kids tend to behave the way you see you act — regardless if you give them instructions to the contrary. “Do as I say, not as I do,” rarely works. If your kid sees you volunteering, they’ll be more likely to get involved.
9. You Reap Warm, Fuzzy Benefits, Too
Guess what? When you give, you get back — and not in a vague, altruistic way. Science shows you increase the levels of neurotransmitters like serotonin and oxytocin, which improve your sense of well-being.
If you feel down, volunteering is one of the best ways to improve your sense of self-esteem. It also teaches you that no matter how bad you have it, someone always has it worse — you learn to count your blessings.
Moms Should Find Time to Volunteer for These 9 Reasons
As a parent, you want to set a positive example for your children. Volunteering offers one way to do so — all moms should find the time and reap the benefits.