Discover the Benefits of Volunteering for Seniors

Posted on January 1, 2023

There are endless ways to give back, volunteer your time or services, and support your local community. While you are helping others, there are also benefits in it for you!

Tennessee is known as the “Volunteer State,” so it is only fitting that our team at The Pavilion Senior Living shares some of the benefits that volunteering provides, as well as a few ways that you can give back in the new year.

Provides a Feeling of Purpose

At The Pavilion Senior Living, we believe that living with purpose is one of the keys to healthy aging. Once we enter retirement, however, it can become more difficult to discover our renewed purpose.

Often, we focus our identity on our role as a parent or by our job title, but once our children have grown up and we are no longer trying to further our careers, it is time to find a new purpose and sense of identity.

Volunteering can help you discover an activity that provides you with a feeling of purpose and leads to fulfillment in your life.

Prevents Social Isolation and Loneliness

Maintaining meaningful connections with friends, family, and peers plays an important role in our overall health and wellness, as socialization can improve cognitive function, increase longevity, and contribute to higher self-esteem. However, our opportunities to engage with others can become more limited as we age.

Fortunately, volunteering gives you more opportunities to socialize and connect with those around you. Depending on what types of volunteer opportunities you participate in, you will naturally be around other individuals to connect with and bond over shared interests and passions.

Promotes Mental Health

The Mayo Clinic Health System states, “Research…has shown that volunteering leads to lower rates of depression and anxiety, especially for people 65 and older. Volunteering reduces stress and increases positive, relaxed feelings by releasing dopamine.”

By volunteering, you are not only helping others, which in turn makes you feel good, but you are also keeping your mind active. Stimulating your mind is one of the best ways to promote brain health and delay cognitive decline.

Additionally, there are endless volunteer opportunities available, meaning you have the potential to continuously learn new skills for a lifetime. This challenges your mind and keeps your cognitive functioning sharp!

Ways to Give Back this New Year

Cater to Your Strengths

If you are naturally good at something or have a hobby, find a way to turn that into a volunteer opportunity.

For example, if you love to knit, consider knitting hats or scarves and donating them to those in need. You could turn this into a more social event as well! Gather others who enjoy knitting and form a group or club that knits together.

Another example could be if you have knowledge on a particular subject or skill, volunteer to teach it. For instance, you could volunteer to teach others how to knit. An additional opportunity could include volunteering to tutor children in a specific school subject.

Beyond volunteering your time, find ways to give back to local or national organizations. For example, instead of birthday gifts, many people choose to have family and friends donate to a specific organization. Facebook has even created a specific feature letting users easily set up a birthday fundraiser on their personal Facebook profile.

Get Involved in Your Senior Living Community

Our senior living communities throughout Tennessee always welcome friends, family, and guests to help and volunteer in our activities and community events.

See what areas your community needs additional help in and volunteer to get involved! This could be anything from helping organize a community activity to spending time with another resident who wants more social connection.

Volunteering can look different for everyone, and there are many opportunities for you to get involved and give back in a way that suits your comfort level and personality. This is a great way to make a significant difference in your life as well as wherever you are helping out.

If you would like to learn more about our senior living communities in Tennessee and the volunteer opportunities we have available, please visit our website or contact a member of The Pavilion Senior Living team.