Favourite volunteer quotes

I came across a volunteer quote today that I hadn’t heard before: “Without volunteers, we’d be a nation without a soul.” Rosalyn Carter.

I love quotes about volunteers and giving. I decided today I would share with you my 10 favourites.

“Brave leaders are never silent around hard things.” Brene Brown

As leaders of volunteers, we often come across things that are hard to talk about. It’s too easy to let things slide and hope they get better on their own. They rarely do. Use Brene’s advice and speak up, no matter how uncomfortable it is.

“Volunteerism is the voice of the people in action.” Helen Dyer

How true this is. When people really care about something, they will act. Politicians should pay attention to this.

“The unselfish effort to bring cheer to others will be the beginning of a happier life for ourselves.” Helen Keller

This is something that all committed volunteers know. There is an incredible joy to be found in helping others.

“Anyone, anywhere, can make a positive difference.” Mark Sanborn

Too often we think we need to join an organization or become part of a movement to make a difference in the world. Not true. All you need to do is to act on the opportunities that are all around us.

“When the whole world is silent, even one voice becomes powerful.” Malala Yousafzai

Often, people won’t act because they feel that the problem is too big for one person to tackle. Take inspiration from Malala.

“As you grow older, you will discover that you have two hands; one for helping yourself and the other for helping others.” Audrey Hepburn

What makes this volunteer quote one of my favourites is that Audrey gives equal weight to helping ourselves. We can’t care for others unless we care for ourselves, too.

“Wherever there is a human being, there is an opportunity for kindness.” Seneca

You don’t need to go looking for people who are obviously in need. There are many people who could use your help in some way, even if they don’t specifically ask for it.

“We are here for a reason. I believe a bit of the reason is to throw little torches out to lead people through the dark.” Whoopi Goldberg

I love this one, not only for its wisdom, but also for the beautiful visual image it evokes.

“When we can’t see clearly for ourselves, we need others to speak greatness over us. People don’t need you to tell them what’s wrong with their lives; they already know. They need you to reassure them that they can still make it right.” Brianna Wiest

Our role as volunteers, and leaders of volunteers, isn’t to fix things for others. It’s to show them that, no matter what they’re going through, they can fix it themselves, and to support them while they do it.

“Service to others is the rent you pay for your room here on Earth.” Muhammed Ali

Human society developed to care for one another. It’s why we gain such satisfaction and joy from helping. Without the willingness to lift others up, society would collapse.

Quotes are tiny pieces of knowledge that, like seeds in fertile ground, sink into our minds and develop into wisdom. These volunteer quotes are some of the best “seeds” that there are. I hope you enjoy them.

This article is written by or on behalf of an outsourced columnist and does not necessarily reflect the views of Castanet.

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About the Author

Karen Knight has provided volunteer recruitment, engagement and training for not-for-profit organizations for more than 25 years.

Her professional life has spanned many industries, working in both the private and public sectors in various leadership positions.

Through her passion for making a difference in the world, she has gained decades of experience in not-for-profits as a leader and a board member.

Karen served in Toastmasters International for more than 25 years, in various roles up to district director, where she was responsible for one of the largest Toastmasters districts in the world.

She oversaw a budget of $250,000 and 300 individual clubs with more than 5,000 members. She had 20 leaders reporting directly to her and another 80 reporting to them—all volunteers.

Karen currently serves as vice-president of the board of directors for the Kamloops Therapeutic Riding Association.

After many years working and volunteering with not-for-profits, she found many leaders in the sector have difficulty with aspects of volunteer programs, whether in recruiting the right people, assigning those people to roles that both support the organization’s mission and in keeping volunteers enthusiastic.

Using hands-on experience, combined with extensive study and research, she helps solve challenges such as volunteer recruitment, engagement and training for not-for-profit organizations.

Karen Knight can be contacted at [email protected], or through her website at https://karenknight.ca/.

The views expressed are strictly those of the author and not necessarily those of Castanet. Castanet does not warrant the contents.

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