Things you should know before you volunteer

After several years of volunteering there are some things i would like to share.

  • Expectations -If you ever have any expectations – keep their realistic .Or you will feel let down after you complete volunteering.
  • Avoid Bigger Organisation – Most big organisation have so many people who want to volunteer ,that you can be made to feel like another brick in the wall.You may see them paying someone else to do the same work you are doing (because that person ASKED )
  • Organisation also usually never quantify/reward hard work put in by the volunteer.So do it because you feel you like to do it and know you are helping someone.
  • The org can erase your hard work if they find some thing better “think” something better has come their way.
  • Lesson learnt -If you volunteer DO NOT have any attachment to your work Having NO expectations will allow you not to feel bad when you make something for the org and see it erased/destroyed shelved when the next volunteer comes around.
  • Do not feel let down if the organisation does not take your suggestion to improve. Most organisations even the best ones are very old fashioned or cannot imagine how cutting edge technology would help them . Though some of them may implement those same suggestions 10 years down the line.
  • Big NGOs get a LOT of funding (read money) – but have a habit of saying “we do not have any money to pay you for your work” . So if you feel you have time to do the work free do it. Remember the NGO can and will pay someone else if they really want to get that work done.  Do not fall into the trap where you feel sorry for the NGO . If you feel they are a rally poor ngo counter check this with their balance sheets (sometimes these are also poorly maintained – even with the big ngos with no proper disclosures)

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