Doing it right.

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I talk a big game. Or I pretend to. But I’m not nearly as confident as a lot of people make me out to be, and I’m far less helpful than I should be.

I’ve decided, at long last, to look into doing volunteer work. It’s been years since I did something unselfish that wasn’t for monetary gain or a physical challenge/race (last time I volunteered on a regular basis was 2003, I think).

Why I haven’t done it until now is because I am quite lazy. I could definitely find 5-10 hours a week to devote to something other than watching YouTube videos or staring at the ceiling not sleeping, but I get caught up in the ‘what skills would actually be useful to an organization? which ones need my help most? should I go local or international? what’s the most important issue that I would like to get involved in?’

Then I get overwhelmed and do nothing.

Women’s issuesare important. Human rights are important. Good nutrition is important. Proper housing is important. Heritage is important. I don’t know where to begin.

And I don’t want to get overwhelmed and do nothing, but all these things (and more) are important to me. How I decide where to devote my time and energy? Armchair activism isn’t enough, I’ve known it for years, so what should I do now?

3 thoughts on “Doing it right.

  1. elsewise

    Same approach as your fitness goals: schedule them in like any other priority. Perhaps devote a month or two to each of the causes that are important to you and, if something sticks and you find you’re unable to leave, all the better!

    • megan

      A lot of organizations don’t want you to do that; they require a greater commitment, because training volunteers is a big investment (the Gallery suspended its program because it was too expensive to train up new volunteers, for example). But maybe I will look into a few short-term, one-day events or similar.

  2. For what it’s worth, I like giving my time to local causes. I helped with a Habitat build a few years ago; I only went out for one day, but that was fine with them. Whether that’s the kind of work you want to do, though, is something else altogether. I have volunteered with the Food Bank, but I never get e-mails from them anymore, which is why I started up with the Kanata Food Cupboard.

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