Friday, March 30, 2012

Is it Time to Volunteer?

In our society today, it may be hard to consider taking time out of our busy lives to volunteer. The economy can limit one’s ability to make the choice of donating one’s time. We all have families to take care of, our own job responsibilities in our careers, children to care for which include their activities to support and attend, homes to maintain and repair - the list can go on and on.

However, the benefits of volunteering are endless. Finding the right match can give one new friends, allow one to learn new skills, or even advance in your own career. Volunteering can even improve your overall mental and physical health!

The true fact is that a volunteer can be the glue that holds an agency or organization together. Not only are you making a connection with your community, but you are also benefitting yourself and your family as well as the cause that you are choosing to volunteer for.

Some of us are more outgoing than others who may have a difficult time meeting new people. Volunteering provides that opportunity to get to know others with common interests as our own. Once you begin to meet new people, it is easier then to reach out further and make even more connections. Volunteering can help you build on your skills that you already have and in turn benefit the community by your contributions. It’s a great way to explore your passions and is a positive way to escape from your every-day routine at home, work or school.

Some may volunteer as a family. This is an option for those who maybe feel guilty if they are not home with their own family spending time with them - especially given today’s fast paced society where everyone is always busy and one needs to work hard at being more creative in finding ways to spend quality time together. Children learn by example. Having parents who show by example the positive outcomes that result from volunteering one’s time will in turn instill the same kind of mind set in the children who grow up in this kind of environment.

Dove, Inc. started with volunteers and it would not be here today if it were not for our volunteers!!! We are forever grateful to each and every one who has so richly blessed our organization over the years. We have formed friendships, started programs, served people in need, strengthened our communities, provided safety to those who were afraid and hurting, reached out to the homeless, held a child’s hand, improved our own neighborhoods, taught life skills in the schools, answered a phone call, caught us up on our filing, delivered meals to the shut-ins, called bingo at the nursing home, etc...etc...etc. When you volunteer, you give part of yourself. You all have done just that. And we at Dove thank you - from the bottom of our hearts!!!
If you would like to volunteer for Dove, call Barb Blakey, Director of Volunteers and Community Relations, at 428-6616. We look forward to meeting you and invite you to become a part of Dove’s family.
                                 Teri Ducy, Domestic Violence Program Director

Training is available for individuals interested in educating themselves on the issues surrounding domestic violence. The training will take place April 30, May 2, 3, 7, 9 and 10, 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., in Decatur at Dove, 302 S. Union, Dean Simcox Conference Center. This training is approved by ICADV (Illinois Coalition Against Domestic Violence) and facilitated by Dove and other community agencies' staff members. There is a $150 fee for the training.

To register, contact Barbara Blakey at (217) 428.6616. A pre-registration phone interview needs to take place by noon on Tuesday, April 24 and there is a registration meeting on Thursday, April 26 at 1:00 p.m.

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