Social service, volunteering, NGO....these are all ways of giving back to the society we live in. We all take from the society, so in our life, we should also give back.
Until 15 years ago, this was a novel concept for me. The only volunteering I had done was in Ethiopia for a short period of time, when I used to read for about one hour a week to the blind. And I thought I was doing that because I had time on my hands and had nothing else to do. But now I know how valuable that reading must have been for the blind who were listening to me. I wish I had done more.
Depending on what one feels comfortable with, one can do personal service, i.e. give time and skills to a cause; or give money to a cause. Whatever is suitable.
I have done both - time and money so I have experience with both. It is a personal decision for anyone when they are ready for social service. This is something cannot be compelled, it is something that comes from within oneself.
I sometimes wonder if I would be doing so much of it if I had a family. I would be busy with them and not have time to give. But in America I see that volunteering is a sometimes a family affair. Volunteering is part of the school education. Kids learn it at a young age. How neat!! I will say that I have never met any Indian during any of my volunteering events - never! Maybe they and I go to different events.....Although in India there are thousands of NGOs (don't know how many are authentic); but in US, there are hardly any NGOs by Indians. Nothing good or bad about this...just an observation.
I am writing two blogs on my experiences. I am not done with volunteering or donating money. It is an ongoing process. Part 1 is on Time Donation and Part 2 is on Money Donation