The Value of Volunteering

Volunteering can benefit you directly in many ways. Not only can it be a fulfilling experience and skill-building opportunity but including volunteer work on your resumé can help in your career or job search. Employers are interested in potential employees who are engaged, involved, interested in learning more, and who take advantage of growth and development opportunities.

These are just some of the many ways that volunteering can impact your career journey:

  • Volunteering can be a way to learn, practice, or try a new skill.  Include these experiences on your resumé, with a title and description.
  • Volunteering can provide a sense of purpose and community.
  • Volunteering can help provide you with references for your next opportunity.
  • Volunteering helps you find more information about the career path you are considering.
  • For some community minded career paths (i.e. Police Services, Firefighter), volunteerism may be required as an entrance requirement.
  • Volunteering is highly valued on post-secondary applications from education/teaching colleges to medical school.
  • Everyone knows someone! Volunteering expands your network, allowing you to make contacts and meet new people who may be able to provide valuable referrals when you are actively looking for your next job. The contacts you make can also be beneficial when applying for post secondary opportunities.
  • A volunteer experience helps you identify key strengths about yourself and may also provide insights on what you want to improve.
  • Volunteer experiences can help to fill any gaps of employment on your resumé.
  • Volunteer experiences build time management skills and allow for a continuous structure to your day.
  • Volunteering can build confidence in your ability to learn, complete, and achieve several different tasks.
  • A volunteer experience allows for community involvement which can improve well being.
  • Many employers have a social-minded culture. Including volunteerism on your resumé lets a potential employer know that you would fit into their work culture.
  • Applying for volunteer opportunities allows you to build and practice your job search and communication skills.

Get involved! Research volunteer opportunities in the same way that you would an employer to understand the organization, what they do, and what they are involved in. Look at their website and social media, check their current events, and speak to people you know who have experience with the organization.