Do you remember the day that you did something nice for someone, and their face lit up with joy and gratitude? When I joined YVC two summers ago, I experienced this many, many times. Through practicing altruism, I felt happiness like never before. I love feeling ecstatic before a service project, and with volunteering, the feeling just keeps on coming.
My favorite service project was when Plymouth YMCA made dog and cat toys for the Michigan Humane Society. We spent the first half of the day making the toys with the Farmington YVC, and then we did some service learning at the Humane Society. We were able to meet two lovely dogs, and we visited the kittens as well. We watched them happily play with our newly made toys. It was super fun making the toys with two YVC communities and seeing the impact it made as well!
I think that this just goes to show that anyone and everyone (human or otherwise) can benefit from work done by a volunteer with a good heart. Carving out a small, expendable time slot to make someone happy is more worthwhile than you might think. In addition, being a volunteer is just a blast! When I went to YVC Summit in October, I met many new people, and we had so much fun together! We did a group service project and some workshops. Volunteering is a chance to give back to your community and get to know it better as well.
Giving anything, from a wrapped gift to the gift of your time benefits everyone involved. As youth volunteers, we empower others to follow our journey, connect with each other, and make the world a better place. There are many ways to give your time, so get creative! You can visit your local senior home and give company to those living there. You can mow, rake, or shovel your neighbor’s lawn. You can organize huge cabinets cluttered with junk (a personal favorite of mine).
All in all, every small thing makes a difference. I truly believe that everyone should seize the opportunity to do nice things for others. So, let’s make it happen!
*Images were originally published on the Plymouth Family YMCA, a YVC host agency, Facebook page.
Hi! My name is Shruti Balla and I am going into 8th grade in the 2019-2020 school year. Although I live in Canton, Michigan, I am part of the YVC program in Plymouth, Michigan. I started YVC last summer, and I joined YAB that same fall. I have a strong interest in serving those around me, which was the most compelling factor in my decision to join YVC and YAB. Generally, I enjoy reading fantasy and fiction. Some of my other hobbies include playing sports, computer programming, and spending time with my friends. Sometimes others view me as eccentric, but they also describe me as knowledgeable, supportive, and kind. Now, as a member of IYAB, I am finally able to extend my sphere of work and bring new, innovative ideas to the table. It’s a wonderful opportunity to be in IYAB, and I hope I can connect with other members and have fun!