Today, I interviewed the presidents of two community based organizations in a small town in the Poconos. I was very impressed with both men and found their commitment to the community to be genuine and invaluable. One gentleman has been in the community since he was an infant and his family has been living in the area since 1876. The other was a transplant to the community from a large city and started getting involved as soon as he and his wife moved there.
What impressed me the most is that both men appear to be tireless. What irked them the most was that the notion of voluntarism has disappeared in many respects and that it is hard to get people involved anymore. Both spoke of the aging population of community volunteers and the need to get students involved in the community again. I say I could not agree more, while I struggle with the notion that I, too, am hardly good at volunteering for anything. When my son started school, I tried to get involved in the PTA, but found that I was not part of the established group and did not feel welcome. So, I stopped. I should not have, and I regret that now.
What do you feel about volunteering? Do you volunteer or are you involved in any CBO’s?