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Volunteering is never a waste of time

My name is Angel Beno, I am 24 years old, and I work for Raleigh Tanzania as a skills-based volunteer project officer. In 2015 I took part in a livelihoods project which was designed to educate and fund young people so they can establish and develop their own businesses. I took part in this project in my village of Lulasi as an entrepreneur. After finishing all the training, I succeeded on getting the funding for a business. However, I turned it down so I can also be a volunteer and share what I have learnt with other young people.

When I decided to be a volunteer, I knew what I wanted to do and achieve, however I didn’t realise I would get so much back in return.

I started my volunteering journey in 2015 with Raleigh Tanzania as a volunteer on a water sanitation and hygiene (WASH) project, an amazing experience which made me continue volunteering in another level which was team leading.

Volunteering as a team leader made me grow so much as a person. One of the skills I have learned was decision making, because in any decision I made, it was never about thinking what is best for me, but always thinking of what is best for the whole team. Not only did volunteering achieve my goal of sharing what I learned as an entrepreneur with other young people, but also, I gained self-confidence and a developed a trust in what I can do. For example, in my whole life I never dreamed of ever becoming a project officer, however the volunteering experiences I’ve had has helped me reach where I am and what I am doing right now. This is due to a combination of confidence, self-belief, setting goals, hard work and no unnecessary complaints, as well as the ability to do something without expecting anything in return. Not only did the experience teach me to be understanding with everyone but also to be patient, which is something that everyone really needs, either at work or in our daily life.

For anyone out there who doesn’t see the value of volunteering, go out and register as a volunteer with any volunteering organizations, because it may take you to the person you wish to be in the future with all the experience you will get.

I always like to use this quote: “The one I want to be started off just like me”. You can be that person you wish so bad to be. So step up and become the volunteer, because it is never a waste of time.

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