Rachael: Richer for the experience

Rachael completed a Bachelor of Business (Marketing and Public Relations) in 2013, is an Aussie, a passionate marketer, a food enthusiast and a keen traveller.


My very good friend Harriet moved to Cambodia for 6 months to volunteer with RAW Impact and from having a previous volunteering experience in South Africa and absolutely loving it, I jumped at the chance to visit her.

Although I was excited, I couldn’t have imagined what this adventure would be like and how the experience would so reaffirm the incredible benefits of volunteering.

Reward yourself by rewarding others.

In the dictionary, the definition of volunteer is, 'be a person who freely offers to take part in an enterprise or undertake a task.'

My definition would be, 'to volunteer is to have the privilege to take part in something bigger than you and be rewarded by the impact you've made no matter how big or small'.

During my trip to Cambodia, RAW Impact provided me with the opportunity to volunteer for their tremendous mission and cause, alongside my friend Harriet.

 

It was extremely motivating to work with such a dynamic, inspiring and dedicated team where everyone is working towards the same goal and takes such pride in their work.

It was also an amazing opportunity to combine two of my great loves, marketing and helping people.

While on this adventure in Cambodia I struggled to understand how I could uphold the motto I always try to live by, ‘treat others how you would like to be treated’, because there are so many people in need.

But by working with RAW and gaining a greater understanding of their purpose and all their incredible projects, I realised that I was right where I needed to be.

There is nothing quite like putting your all into something and expecting nothing in return, apart from an overwhelming feeling of contentment and accomplishment.

AND

Not only was the volunteering rewarding, the Cambodian culture was too! I loved everything about the culture, from the delicious food to the people.

The energy on the streets in this great country is contagious and the welcoming nature of the people is nothing short of incredible.

 

To anyone considering volunteering I would say, find the right fit for you and go for it. Embrace the experience whole-heartedly, no matter where you are.

Not sure how to find the best fit for you or where to start?

Here are my tips:

  • Write down what you’re passionate about and keep that in mind while doing your research.
  • Work out where you want to go. Whether it’s finding an opportunity in your area or doing some travel, both will boast many benefits.
  • You want to dedicate yourself fully to the work, so figure out what time you can commit to and lock in some dates.
  • It’s hard to know just what you will be exposed to, so try to keep an open mind through the process.
  • Get ready! You have a remarkable experience ahead of you.

Remember that by helping others you will be rewarding yourself, so what are you waiting for? It’s a win-win!

To get your research started, here are some opportunities to develop your leadership skills at USQ.


Related:

Heppy: Volunteering: A key to unlock your potential and provide personal growth

Kara: The perks of volunteering on the RSC

Phoenix Cartoons Episode 6: Volunteering