HELP­ING OTH­ERS IS GOOD FOR YOU

Southern Gazette (South Perth) - - OPINION -

WE are for­tu­nate to have more than 600,000 vol­un­teers in WA and with­out their sup­port, our com­mu­ni­ties would grind to a halt.

They pro­vide vi­tal ser­vices that sup­port our dis­ad­van­taged, aged and dis­abled, they as­sist with con­ser­va­tion and en­vi­ron­men­tal projects, an­i­mal wel­fare and arts, and the list goes on.

We of­ten fo­cus on what vol­un­teers are giv­ing to the com­mu­nity.

In­ter­est­ingly, they too are en­joy­ing some won­der­ful ben­e­fits from their con­tri­bu­tions.

This week is Na­tional Men­tal Health Week (Oc­to­ber 8-15) and a great time to con­sider the fac­tual ev­i­dence that proves vol­un­teer­ing is good for both men­tal and phys­i­cal well­be­ing.

To reap the health ben­e­fits, peo­ple do not need to com­mit to days of vol­un­teer­ing.

Just a few hours makes a dif­fer­ence in hap­pi­ness and mood, with vol­un­teer­ing re­sult­ing in a “helper’s high”, a pow­er­ful phys­i­cal and emo­tional feel­ing ex­pe­ri­enced when di­rectly help­ing oth­ers.

Vol­un­teer­ing WA thanks our won­der­ful vol­un­teers and en­cour­ages ev­ery­one to vol­un­teer for the bet­ter­ment of their health.

There are thou­sands of ways to fol­low your vol­un­teer­ing pas­sion listed at www.vol­un­teer­ingwa.org.au, so dur­ing Na­tional Men­tal Health Week, get out and ex­pe­ri­ence a “helper’s high”, the most nat­u­ral way in the world to feel good.

TINA WIL­LIAMS, Chief ex­ec­u­tive, Vol­un­teer­ing WA.

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