I've been volunteering at various organizations for years now. (Schools, libraries, large events, etc.) Many people do not understand why I volunteer. People have said things to me like, "Why do you keep volunteering? You should work." or, "You've been volunteering with them for so long now, tell them you demand pay now." and even, "Can't you take the day off once in a while? It's so tedious to always go there. It's not like you're getting paid" As cliche as it sounds, I find the experience of volunteering to be quite rewarding. I used to volunteer at the library for two years. I've always loved reading, writing and any sort of literature. Furthermore, the library is one of my favourite places in the world. Even though I was not an employee, it felt great to know I was contributing to an organization I care so much about.
Growing up, I had two dream jobs:
Dream 1. To be a veterinarian
Dream 2. To be a best selling author
I decided very early on to give up dream 1. As soon as I found out being a vet meant you have to be good at math, and you'll have animals dying on your table, I didn't think I could handle it. (Dream 2 is still in the works). My reasons for wanting to be a vet was because I love animals, and I like to think of myself as an animal activist. I've always wanted to do something to help them. What could be more rewarding then helping someone who is unable to help themselves? Although I never succeed in that dream, I did start volunteering at a local animal shelter a couple of months ago. Our duties as a volunteer are to spend time with the animals, cuddle with them, play with them, and give them companionship. I do not get paid for what I do...I get something better; love from the animals. They show appreciation by cuddling up to you, purring at you, barking at you, and occasionally rubbing all over you. Had I become a a vet my goal would be the same as my goal as an animal shelter volunteer; doing something which benefits the animals.
I think it is important for people to see the bigger picture. Life is not all about money. Sometimes just the experience and knowing you did something good to help someone can be payment enough.