Three cheers for volunteersVolunteering has many benefits, and I oughta’ know!
By: Bernie Hughes, The Daily Telegram
Volunteering has many benefits, and I oughta’ know! Are you old enough to remember comedian Herb Shriner using that line, “I oughta’ know”? I’ll never forget the pride he used to vocally emphasize that line, which was followed by “because I’ve been all the way to Indianapolis!” He was an Indiana country boy and proud of it, and that became his iconic line.
But back to volunteering and its many benefits. It is especially true at this time of the year in Superior. On April 28, RSVP (Retired and Senior Volunteer Program) had an excellent luncheon and program at Barker’s Island. On May 12, the ARC (Aging Resource Center) held its event at the UWS Rothwell Student Center. In addition to outstanding meals — the introductions of area dignitaries, short remarks, entertainment, recognition awards, etc., made these events memorable occasions.
I mention these gatherings not because they are the volunteers’ primary motivation for their volunteer service, but because they are truly appreciated.
The most important benefit for gratuitously volunteering is the self-satisfaction that comes with helping great citizens of this area in a time of their need. Every one of us who has helped someone in need knows that inner feeling of satisfaction that comes with knowing that you’ve done something more important than just bringing pleasure to yourself. I imagine everyone in Douglas County knows that special good feeling that comes with assisting family, friend, neighbor or even a stranger in need. On the other hand, those of us who volunteer on a regular basis get that reward day after day. If you aren’t already volunteering, you might wish to give it a go.
Many people have put into words what I have been inadequately trying to get across in my preceding remarks:
Hubert Humphrey put it this way:
“The moral sense of a society is how it treats those who are in the dawn of life, the children, and those in the twilight of life, the elderly, and those in the shadow of life, the needy and the handicapped.”
Booker T. Washington said:
“Living is the art of living. Loving is the art of caring. Caring is art of living. Sharing is the art of living. If you want to lift yourself up, lift up someone else.”
Winston Churchill put it in very few words:
“We make a living by what we do, but we make a life by what we give.”
John Wesley wrote the following and may have been speaking of volunteers:
Do all the good you can.
By all the means you can.
In all the ways you can.
In all the places you can.
At all the times you can.
To all the people you can.
As, long as ever you can.
My final attempt at some humor may not be appropriate for a volunteer discussion, but the woman that wrote this “Women’s Love Poem” is looking for a very high-quality volunteer:
Before I lay me down to sleep
I pray for a man who is not a creep,
One who’s handsome, smart and strong
One who loves to listen long,
One who thinks before he speaks,
One who’ll call, not wait for weeks.
I pray he’s gainfully employed,
When I spend his cash, won’t be annoyed.
Pulls out my chair and opens my door.
Massages my back and begs to do it more.
I pray this man will love me to no end,
And always be my very best friend.
Bernie Hughes, Ed.D., is a retired educator who resides in Superior. He can be reached at Bernie1@cpinternet.com.