Did you know that volunteering can be good for your health? Yes, knowing you’ve helped someone may leave you with a warm, fuzzy feeling inside, but it can actually enhance your well-being too.
- Improves your mental health and functioning. Volunteering reduces your risk of depression and loneliness by increasing your social interaction and strengthening your connection to the community. Volunteering in mentally stimulating activities, like tutoring or reading, also improves your memory and thinking skills.
- Increases your physical activity. Depending on the activity you choose (e.g., baking, sewing, working with children or helping in a food shelter), volunteering keeps you physically active.
- Improves your emotional health. Volunteering can give you a sense of meaning and purpose in life. Whether it’s volunteering in a school, community organization or at a hospital (hint, hint), voluntarily giving your time and effort improves your mood and self-esteem.
- Reduces stress. Volunteering and knowing you’ve made a difference by helping others or an organization can be calming and relaxing.
- Improves your physical health. Research has shown that volunteering on a regular basis can help lower your risk of developing high blood pressure which contributes to heart disease, stroke and premature death. While this may not be directly related to volunteering alone, due to the above benefits (e.g., increasing your physical activity and lowering stress), volunteering does play a role in reducing this condition.
If you’d like to make a difference in the community and your health through volunteering, join Carroll Hospital’s volunteer team. Learn about volunteer opportunities at the hospital or call Volunteer Services at 410-871-7280 for more information.
Pictured: Volunteer Lisa Welsh works on a window display in Carroll Hospital Auxiliary’s Candy Striper Gift Shop