It is nice volunteering because you can set your own hours. Most of the time organizations are very flexible with you. Also, you learn new things. For example, with the organizations I have volunteered for I learned new tricks on Microsoft Office to create flyers and to use programs I was not familiar with. I am learning how to become incorporated, how to apply for grants, and even have the opportunity to set up a table with a non-profit organization event (Take Charge. Get Tested. Event, June 27, 2009). The things I am learning while volunteering could cost a lot of money if I were to have learned these things in school!
My volunteering allows me to simply "get out of the house" sometimes!!! Time passes by so fast, I want to be able to account for it and feel as though I have done something productive with my time.
Volunteering allows me to successfully interact with other people and not always think about my illness. We could all sit at home and look at the walls and wonder what we're going to do next. We'd soon get very bored. Volunteering is like being proactive with my time, because I know I would get bored so, why not get something started?
My website, Embracing My Mind, was further in my heart and on my mind to create as a result of my volunteering. I was lucky enough to get hands on experience and guidance with my new "mentor" and boss.
Networking is essential to promoting programs. It is helpful to save business cards and to ask people if they know anyone who would be interested in your program, and to get personal referrals.
I enjoy getting different projects and meeting new people. What do you enjoy from volunteering?
To learn more about schizophrenia visit the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) or Schizophrenia Society of Novia Scotia (Canada). Also, check out a new support group, Embracing My Mind.