Everyone has volunteered at least once in their lifetime. I started volunteering when I was in high school because it was required … You know, to make college applications look good. Well, at least that’s what they tell you. But what they should actually tell you is:
Volunteering should be a norm, because it’s such a great thing to do for the community – and for yourself.
My name is Itzel Gonzalez and I’m a senior at Meredith College, double majoring in Public Health and Biology; I started as just a Biology major, but ended up taking on both. My plan A was to go to medical school and become a doctor, but I felt that I could do more than just diagnose people with bad diseases and illnesses. I felt like I needed to be the person who educates the public about preventing doctor visits and bad ailments. And, well, that’s why I decided to major in Public Health. Public Health is the study of health determinants and interventions to address health problems – or in layman’s terms, what causes illness and how to avoid it.
Being an intern at Activate Good has given me a new perspective of how someone can do good for their community and also do good for themselves. My responsibility at Activate Good is to promote how volunteering is beneficial to an young adolescents while also benefiting the community. Since January, I’ve found great information and learned a lot.
In high school, I always thought of volunteering as a requirement to fulfill, but it’s more than that.
It’s the science behind volunteering that is super cool!
When you help someone you have three hormones being released that make you happy and give you something you may call “helper’s high.” That term means that you are just so happy to help others that it makes you want to continue to help. (Trust me, it’s a thing.) Plus, it helps reduce stress, which then helps reduce the risk of having depression, cardiovascular disease, and low self-esteem.
Stress can come in many forms and result from many things, ranging from trying to make friends to trying to get into college to finding a work-life balance, and more. Many teens do not know how to manage stress, or don’t take time to manage it. But here at Activate Good, we want to help teens to be healthy and help build up a healthy community around them.
Activate Good helps individuals find volunteering positions for teens and adults alike. ActivateGood.org allows teens as young as age 13 to create volunteer accounts, search for opportunities, register for those opportunities, and track their volunteer hours. With more than 380 local nonprofit partners on the website, there’s surely something for everyone.
They also actively match groups to proper volunteer opportunities on request. Schools can even get involved by facilitating special service projects for classes and campuses, or adopt Activate Good’s Community Service & Leadership curriculum as an elective class option. This summer, students can participate in one of two week-long service leadership opportunities – Activate Good’s first ever Teen Leadership & Service Program.
Activate Good also hosts signature events and days of service, like Teen Days of Service and Family Volunteer Day, and creates curated event lists for other occasions.
Save the dates!
Mother’s Day Weekend & Father’s Day Weekend
This two events are where we invite our nonprofit partners to curate family-friendly volunteer opportunities. It’s a great way to bond with mom/dad or remember. Activate Good helps by decrease the time of searching for volunteers opportunities.
9/11 Day of Service
A good opportunity to honor those lost on September 11, 2001, is to come and be part of this national day of service, mobilizing volunteers to engage in good deeds.
Family Volunteer Day
This day rallies families to volunteer by providing opportunities for them to help their local communities. Activate Good brings together people from around the Triangle to celebrate the power of families that volunteer together.
About Activate Schools
Activate Schools is an Activate Good initiative to empower the next generation of young volunteers and community leaders. What does this look like? Educational offerings for teens and families, opportunities for discussion and youth leadership, annual days of service, volunteer projects with Activate Good and our nonprofit partners, and more!
Activate Good believes we can help make volunteerism part of the local lifestyle by integrating volunteerism into everyday institutions like schools and workplaces. Learn more about Activate Good and join our mailing list for monthly volunteer highlights and more.