How I Volunteer, Despite Being an Introvert

Volunteer_Introvert.jpg

by Sarah J., a Humility Homes and Services, Inc. Volunteer

I did it. I now volunteer at Humility Homes and Services, Inc. Homelessness has been on my mind for a long, long time. But………I’m an introvert.

Until June, 2018, I was a non-volunteering chicken. My kids were older now, my family supportive of my desire to help. I drove my friends nuts talking about wanting to volunteer. There was that insistent voice inside my head saying: GO HELP. But what if I was turned away? Making that phone call, meeting the helpers, seemed so intimidating.

So I went the way all fretting introverts go. I gave myself a pep talk.
You want to volunteer so much. It is a huge void in your life. You want to help those experiencing homelessness.
You. are. calling. Today.

I set up a meeting with the volunteer coordinator. I worried. Do I have any skills? Will I waste everyone’s time? How uncomfortable.

The volunteer coordinator was friendly and welcoming. She took me around Humility Homes and Services, explaining the many ways the nonprofit functions and how they are combatting homelessness in the Quad City area. Whoa. I had so many questions and was listening so intently, I forgot to be nervous! I’d come to the right place; my whole world opened up. They really helped people here, people in tough situations. The coordinator used the words quality and dignity. They have social workers, government funding, private financial donations, and real life, practical items such as clothing, shampoo, and household goods ready to give to participants who are striving towards a better life.

I help in the warehouse, sorting donations. (I can sort!) I take items out to the Fresh Start Donation Center and help keep the sections tidy. (I can organize!) I work alongside amazing people who allow me to ask questions and make mistakes. The volunteers and workers are incredible! They train me, they are patient, they are funny, they are real.
I. love. this. place.

I help because I need to. Because I can. Because when I volunteer, something in me feels complete. I just feel so, so happy. Mind you, I don’t help to feel good, it’s just a side benefit.
I help because there are so many people who need people to be a part of the solution.
I help, I help, I help.