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How do you choose a cause to support?
This is a question I am considering at the moment. The most important thing to think about, I think, is what is important to you. There are many causes, charities and organisations who support a variety of causes whether it be people, research, animals or the environment. Have you or someone important to you been impacted by an issue or illness? Is there an area that you want to learn more about? What do you enjoy doing? What would you like to give? How much time do you realistically have to give?
Having searched Google for volunteering opportunities I have come across a number of responses for people of all ages, young people, under 18 and up to 25 as well as many opportunities for those of us who are 25 and older. I have found a number of organisations that promote volunteering and provide search engines that link voluntary opportunities and volunteers in their areas of interest and location. A well known organisation is do it.org Do-it.org. If this does not feel like the right approach for you, or you cannot find opportunities that interest you, you can always research local organisation within your community and contact them directly to enquire about voluntary opportunities. Sometimes they do not advertise roles on websites such as Do-it.
What is next for me?
I mentioned that recently I have been asking myself the question of how to choose a cause to support, and although I have done it before, I feel as though I am at a place where I am questioning what is next for me. Where do I go from here?
I will continue to volunteer with the Night Shelter until the project closes in March for the year. If I follow my own advice and think of causes that I am passionate about, I think of individuals with disabilities, children and adults. I believe that individuals with disabilities should be valued within society for who they are and what they can achieve and contribute. I believe that society should be more disabled friendly and that adequate care and support should be provided that suits the individual, their needs and wishes. If you have seen some of my other posts you will be aware that my Grandad has a disability and I support my family in their caring role, perhaps this is where my passion comes from.
Another passion is family carers, from my own personal experience as well as what I observed while working as a home care assistant, being a family carer, although very rewarding, can be challenging and restrictive if you do not have the right, necessary support.
Next, the question of time. With my job at the moment I do not have a lot of free time, even if I leave work on time I won't get home until about 6.30. I could offer to volunteer for an evening a week from about 7-8 but is that needed or helpful to the organisation or the voluntary role? As I have done with the Night Shelter, I prefer at the moment to say I am available for a period of time at the weekend once a fortnight. This allows me to have some time off to relax, see friends and catch up on any household chores.
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Have you done anything creative to raise awareness of a cause?