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Giving to others can enrich daily life

By Staff Editorial
On March 2, 2018

It would be safe to say many possess a bit of “save the world” mentality.

There are those who want to push past limitations and achieve the “impossible”. There are also individuals who want to break down barriers and go up against something much bigger than themselves. 

Typically, these people take risks and share the desire to inspire and provoke change.

As college students, the possibilities seem endless when the thought of making a difference comes to mind, so where does one start? 

Through volunteering in your area, efforts can be locally focused that allow one to help others, the environment and even themselves along the way.

But… why volunteer? Why put more on your plate when there’s already so much on it to begin with?

Volunteering gives people vast opportunities to get out and about in their communities. 

By consciously moving among your neighbors and local businesses, you’re able to connect with people who you wouldn’t particularly interact with on a daily basis. 

There is learning to be had about the wonders each town holds between the modern and dated buildings alike, around each corner, and so forth. 

Meeting and talking to individuals with interesting tales to tell about their youth as well as the cities and country sides they grew to love over the years brings pride and is a memory of times past.

Most volunteer organizations are designed to help those in need and are non-profit, meaning they don’t receive salaries for work and whatever money they have goes towards the overhead of running the organization itself. 

The common consensus is the relationships you build with one another and those in the community are worth much more than any paycheck. 

Other than being able to explore new areas of your community, those that volunteer reap benefits for themselves in the long run. 

Through volunteering, college students are able to apply for and receive certain scholarships and other outside money not available to those who do not.

Educational institutions can also inspire action. Recently, the Cedar Rapids campus of Kirkwood Community College participated in the popular and very successful student-based organization known as Dance Marathon. 

Several universities across Iowa contribute to this year-round event, which is under the umbrella of the nationwide charity Children’s Miracle Network. The University of Iowa boasts the third largest Dance Marathon in the nation. 

Students and staff come together for a 24-hour dance “party” to raise money and celebrate children who have survived and continue to fight against cancer while carrying on the spirit of those who have passed. 

Participants are encouraged to raise a minimum of $500 with proceeds going to help families whose children have fallen ill. 

This is one example of how giving a little time can make a difference without a lot of effort and in some cases, can even be fun.

If you or someone you know wants to learn more about how to get involved in Cedar Rapids and Linn County, you can visit http://www.linncounty.org for more information.

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