A Family’s Guide to Volunteering
You’ve probably heard that giving—not receiving—is the secret to happiness unceasing. In your bid to instil this important value in your children, do you often encourage them to donate some of their pocket money or toys to charity? But how about presenting them the opportunity to do their part to give back to society? Ever considered volunteering?
Volunteering in Singapore: What is it and why it's good for the family
Volunteering, when done as a family, comes with a myriad of benefits. Those who have tried it can vouch for the fact that it is one of the most satisfying, fun, and productive ways to bond as a family. Apart from helping beneficiaries, volunteering helps your family grow closer as it involves teamwork and communication. Giving back to society helps children learn to be compassionate and persevering. Beyond that, seeing their parents put others before self would better help them understand the needs of others. Volunteering also develops their social skills such as interpersonal communication.
Unfortunately, one of the reasons many families don’t end up volunteering is because they don’t know if they have what it takes. The thing is, everyone has something to give. All you need is the heart and time for it.
Many people also have no idea how to get started on volunteering. If you’re in that situation, we’re here to help. From how to go about it, what to do and where to go, we’ll help you and your family get started.
Getting Started with Volunteering in Singapore
Step 1 – Understanding What You Want to Do As a Family
Every family has different interests and there is a variety of ways to contribute. It is important to think about your family members’ personalities and traits before finding a common cause to volunteer for. Do you have bubbly and energetic children who love to socialise? They would be perfect to bring cheer to the seniors at old folks’ homes! Does your family have a soft spot for animals? Then volunteering to care for animals at a shelter would be the way to go! It’s important that everyone is on the same page before you start planning what to do.
Remember, you don’t need to have specific expertise to volunteer. Think of how you and your family can make a difference based on your common, everyday traits.
Step 2 – Knowing Your Beneficiaries
Before you venture into volunteering, you must have a thorough understanding of the organisation of your choice, the help that is required, and the beneficiaries. Spend some time researching and don’t jump into it blindly!
SG Cares – All Your Volunteering Questions Answered
Thankfully, there is now a one-stop app for your needs. The SG Cares app is a personalised tool for you to embark on your journey of giving. With it, you’re presented a consolidated view of all the volunteering opportunities for which you can sign up on-the-go. What’s more, your search results can be filtered by location so you can find opportunities near to you.
The app also offers a multitude of resources for you to learn about volunteering, allows you to discover others’ volunteering experience to draw some inspiration, and tracks the number of hours and donations you have made to visualise your cumulative impact of giving!
The SG Cares app will help you and your family get started on your volunteering journey!
SG Cares Partners & Beneficiaries
The SG Cares app has a comprehensive list of beneficiaries and partners that you can work with. In fact, when you download the app, you will be prompted to identify your area of interest, which can narrow down your search from a broad range of categories. There really is something for everyone, whether you’re into doing your part for the arts scene or are concerned about animal welfare.
We’ve highlighted three categories to help you get started.
1. Children & Youth
Got the passion to engage youths? Do you enjoy outdoor activities? Are you energetic with a lively personality and good communication skills? If so, select the ‘Children & Youth’ category where you’ll find opportunities to work with organisations such as YMCA, Children’s Cancer Foundation and Bethesda Care Services, to name a few. Some of the activities you and your family can participate in include donation drives, conducting sports and enrichment workshops, and many more.
2. Animal Welfare
Do you have a soft spot for animals? Do your kids like pets but don’t have one at home? If helping furry friends is your cup of tea, then narrow your search down to the ‘Animal Welfare’ category and look out for opportunities to become a conservation ambassador, to raise awareness about animals and to collect donations. Lots of meaningful fun and learning with furry friends await you!
If you find meaning and purpose in bringing joy to seniors, then look no further than the ‘Elderly’ category. From karaoke sessions to being a medical escort, there is a host of volunteering opportunities for you and your family to take up. Seniors may enjoy listening to your kids’ stories and share their laughter too! Your time with the seniors would make a difference to their day. For all you know, you may take home some words of wisdom that can help you in raising your kids!
These are just a few of the many categories available on the SG Cares app. Opportunities are aplenty and you may wish to consider some relating to education, animal welfare, working with the disabled, sports or environment conservation. Once you’ve decided on your area of interest, be sure to check back regularly on new volunteering opportunities available.
Can’t wait to get started? Download the SG Cares app to start your giving journey as a family today. Remember, everyone has something to offer and together, we can build a more caring home for all!