Perhaps the first and biggest benefit people get from volunteering is the satisfaction of incorporating service into their lives and making a difference in their community and country.
The intangible benefits alone—such as pride, satisfaction, and accomplishment—are worthwhile reasons to serve. In addition, when we share our time and talents we:
• Solve Problems
• Strengthen Communities
• Improve Lives
• Connect to Others
• Transform Our Own Lives
Benefit Your Health
Over the past two decades we have also seen a growing body of research that indicates volunteering provides individual health benefits in addition to social ones. This research, which is presented by CNCS in a report titled “The Health Benefits of Volunteering: A Review of Recent Research,” has established a strong relationship between volunteering and health: those who volunteer have lower mortality rates, greater functional ability, and lower rates of depression later in life than those who do not volunteer.
Comparisons of the health benefits of volunteering for different age groups have also shown that older volunteers are the most likely to receive greater benefits from volunteering, whether because they are more likely to face higher incidence of illness or because volunteering provides them with physical and social activity and a sense of purpose at a time when their social roles are changing.
Some of these findings also indicate that volunteers who devote a “considerable” amount of time to volunteer activities (about 100 hours per year) are most likely to exhibit positive health outcomes.
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Tips for Volunteering
Below are general tips for individuals interested in volunteering, as well as broken down by specific age category.
Other Important Links
Military Family Month
Art & Essay Contest teaches healthy communication skills
Military children draw and write about unique challenges
Details and Information:
Co-sponsored by GEICO, the annual Armed Services YMCA Art & Essay Contest allows children to express their military lifestyle and serves to remind us of the sacrifices our men and women in uniform, and their families, make each day for our country. Entries for the art contest depict the theme, “My Military Family” or "My Day at the ASYMCA," while the essay's theme is either "My greatest challenge as a military child has been.." or "How the Armed Services YMCA helped me."
The contest is officially launched every November and is open to all eligible children of U.S. active duty or retired service members. Winners of both the art and essay contests are announced in April and have their winning entries displayed at 34 Armed Services YMCA branch and affiliate locations, as well as military bases worldwide during Military Family Month each November.
Winners also receive a special Apple brand product prize to help military children continue creating and expressing themselves.
Entries for the art contest should depict the theme, “My Military Family” or "My Day at the ASYMCA." The art contest promotes art among children in grades 1–6 of active duty or retired (with 20+ years of service) members of the Army, Marine Corps, Navy, Air Force, Coast Guard and National Guard/Reserves families.
This year’s the essay contest's two themes, "How the ASYMCA has helped me," or "My greatest challenge as a military child has been.." encourages military children to use creative writing to express how they conquered the challenge or how the ASYCMA was a part of their life.
Reminder: all artwork and essays become the property of the Armed Services YMCA.
Submissions for the ASYMCA Art & Essay Contest should be submitted by March 16, 2018.
Details and entry forms
Rules, instructions, & entry forms can be found by clicking the rules & entry form button.
Sign up for email notifications
The details of the annual contest are released in November. Sign up now so you don't miss the deadline to enter.
Last year's winning submissions: