Wellbeing through Volunteering
The personal benefits of volunteering are often overlooked. We already know what a massive difference volunteering makes to the lives of people in need. But those who engage in voluntary work find it personally transformative too, and on so many levels. Here are five good reasons why volunteering in service to others can boost your well-being mentally, spiritually and physically.
Volunteering Beats Feelings of Isolation
Humans are social beings. We were built to thrive in communities, where we support others and receive support back. But the world we live in today seems to have us more and more isolated and motivated only by self-preservation. This isn’t natural and is one of the biggest causes of depression.
When you volunteer in service of others you become part of a meaningful cause and community. Also, volunteering gets us out there, enabling us to nurture new and existing relationships.
Volunteering is a Sunnah
Service to others for the sake of Allah (SWT) is an Islamic tradition that seems to have fallen by the wayside of our modern lives. We need to remind ourselves that we are the people of a prophet who carried bricks on his back to build masjids.
We all know this Hadith when a Bedouin came upon a gathering where our Prophet (PBUH) was serving milk to the companions and asked: who is the master of these people? And our Prophet (PBUH) replied, ‘The masters of a nation are the ones who serve their nation…’ (Daylami, Musnad, II, 324).
Today, most people assume that when we achieve a position of leadership, we deserve to be rewarded by being served by others. Whereas service goes hand in hand with leadership. There are untold rewards to be gained from reviving the Sunnah of service, which enables social unity and prosperity.
Volunteering Beats Depression
The mental health benefits of volunteering have been proven. Spending time in service to others releases dopamine, reducing stress, anxiety and depression. People who volunteer report that they feel more positive through a sense of meaning and appreciation.
The social nature of volunteering also plays a big role in improving mental health. As does the physical activity that’s often involved. And because our minds and bodies are so strongly connected, feeling better mentally also means feeling better physically – and vice versa.
Volunteering is an act of Gratitude
For Muslims, the importance of Gratitude – Shukr cannot be overstated. But did you know there are three different kinds of Shukr?
- 1. Shukr Bi’l Qalb – Gratitude of the Heart
- 2. Shukr Bi’l-Lisan – Gratitude of the Tongue
- 3. Shukr Bi’l-Badan Wa’l Arkan – Gratitude of the Limbs
The first form of Shukr is when we feel grateful in our hearts for all that Allah (SWT) has blessed us with. The second form is when we express our gratitude to Allah (SWT) verbally. The third form is showing gratitude to Allah (SWT) by using/applying His blessings in service for His pleasure. This could involve volunteering the time, energy, wealth, skills and physical strength we were blessed with, to help others for the sake of Allah (SWT).
And [remember] when your Lord proclaimed, “If you are grateful, I will surely increase you [in blessings]; but if you deny, indeed, My punishment is severe.” (Holy Qur’an 14:7)
Don’t forget that service to others is also simultaneously a form of Sadaqah as is every good thing we do from a smile to a harmful thing we pick up from the street.
Volunteering Builds Confidence
Most volunteer activities involve setting ourselves a challenge. But challenges come in different forms for different people.
Some of our volunteers run marathons or climb mountains. Others organise charity coffee mornings. Regardless of how big or small, voluntary work requires us to push our limits, get out of our comfort zone and learn new skills. At the very least, we break out of our routine to do something different. All of this inspires a sense of achievement and builds confidence.
Being part of a meaningful cause is incredibly rewarding. Giving selflessly and knowing that your efforts are helping others inspire a sense of self-respect and self-worth.
Want to Volunteer for Imran Khan Cancer Appeal this winter? It’s a sure-fire way to beat the winter blues by getting out there and getting active. And there are so many ways!BECOME A VOLUNTEER
For inspiration, check out our fundraising ideas below. And get in touch. Our dedicated volunteer liaison officer can give you guidance. We can also provide Imran Khan Cancer Appeal merchandise (t-shirts, collection buckets, leaflets stationary etc.) to support your efforts.
We also have a wide range of volunteering initiatives you can get involved in throughout the year, like our outdoor events and charity challenges. Why not sign up now and start your training and fundraising this winter? Click below for our 2024 schedule of Events and Challenges.
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