“Volunteering is the ultimate exercise in democracy. You vote in elections once a year, but when you volunteer, you vote every day about the kind of community you want to live in.” Anonymous
What kind of community do you want to live in? Because every time you raise a hammer at Habitat, you’re not just building and improving places to call home, but you’re building strength and self-reliance in a myriad of ways!
1. Learn valuable life skills
Never held a hammer before? On that Habitat build site, that’s okay! Whether you are a master electrician or a total newcomer, you’ll leave from your volunteer experience with new experience and confidence–from caulking to shoveling to communicating with new friends in your community, these are skills you get to take with you off the build site. Plus, there is evidence that volunteering is good for your health!
2. Create lasting friendships
Because the connections you make on the build site are REAL! From the compassionate Crew Leaders to hearing the stories of Habitat families, you’ll create connections built on teamwork, shared values, and sweating side-by-side.
3. Invest in your community
Every job matters. From answering phones in the Habitat office to raising the walls on a new Habitat home, every effort counts. One of our homebuyers described it like all the cells of the body working together–the house is the body, and every volunteer is a small, essential piece, contributing to the health and success of the whole.
4. Make change you can SEE
Sometimes it’s hard to see the bigger picture when you volunteer. But at Habitat, you literally SEE the difference you’re making, whether you volunteer one Saturday a year or every single week. In the words of Habitat volunteer and Tucson poet laureate TC Tolbert, “You start building in the morning, and 6 hours later you can literally see the work that’s been done. It’s so satisfying.”
5. Support your physical and mental health
Volunteering is good for you–and the research proves it! The Doing Good is Good for You Study reveals 75 percent of U.S. adults feel physically healthier by volunteering, including a reduction in stress and an increase in self-confidence and pride. Building with Habitat will also keep you physically active, building strength in body as well as community.
6. Build hope for the future
Many Habitat homebuyers were at one point fearful. Fearful that rent would go up and they’d be forced to move. Fearful that their children weren’t safe in their own neighborhoods. Fearful that a life of stability and self-reliance would never be within reach.
But every time you volunteer with Habitat, every time you build homes side-by-side along Habitat families, you’re saying, “You’re not alone in this. I believe in you.”
The act of volunteering gives families hope. That a home isn’t some faraway fantasy, but a reality. Physically within reach.