By Kate Marchant. In an age of self-care and becoming more aware of the impact of giving too much of ourselves to others, it may be difficult to understand why anyone would want to volunteer and give their time up for a cause. However, there are many benefits of volunteering, and those benefits range from minor to life-changing. Below are just some of the benefits of volunteering, but if you’ve had your own beneficial experiences of volunteering, please share them in the comments. Purpose Sometimes it can be hard to know what our purpose is in the world. Some people seem to know exactly why they’re here and what their mission is on Earth, but others don’t feel that level of certainty. But being a part of something that makes a positive change can really help to give you that sense of purpose and belonging. It can make you feel part of something and like what you do matters. Inspiration Volunteering for an organisation can be incredibly inspiring. Seeing the challenges that others face and how they overcome them with bravery, grace and joy can inspire you to face your fears and do something you’ve always been afraid of, or to make a scary and life-changing but ultimately rewarding change in your life. Inspiration is everywhere in the world of volunteering. Friendship When you volunteer for an organisation and you’re working with other volunteers, you’re often with people who are very similar to you, with similar values and interests, volunteering for a cause you both support. Many long-lasting friendships come from doing something positive together and from achieving a target or goal together, such as raising a set amount of money for the cause. Understanding If you volunteer for a cause very close to your heart, it can often lead you to meet people that make you feel very understood. For example, volunteers for organisations that support those who have lost a parent and have lost a parent themselves often feel that the understanding they receive from people in the organisation is like no other, as many people in their life just don’t understand the experience. Fitness Many organisations have events that you can get involved to promote fitness, such as a sponsored cycle, sponsored run or sponsored hike. It’s a great way to get fit and raise money for a good cause, but it’s also a great motivator to keep going and keep pushing on, even when it gets hard, because you know you’re making a huge difference for people that need support. Career Progression Volunteering can be a great way of gaining experience. Voluntary organisations often have positions available for photographers, graphic designers, artists, writers, social media marketers, video content creators and more. Try contacting a voluntary organisation to see if you can support them. Most organisations will allow you to use work for them for your portfolio or provide you with a reference. Sunny-side-up living!