The best way to find yourself is to lose yourself in the service of others.

– Gandhi

Today I worked in a communal garden with a group of CRS alums. All wonderful people that are always willing to do something for someone else. This weekend in March has become a national volunteering day and we helped to build a fruitgarden today. I love volunteering. Because it takes true motivation and inner strength. (And also some physical strength in this case.) Three reasons why I love volunteering.

You’re not alone.

Volunteering can easily be done alone, but more often you work together with a group. It’s a common achievement. You’re not the only one. People are there to support you and to help you. It’s a team effort. Like today in the communal garden. The tall men lifted the planks and the beams and the tiny girls climbed up the ladder to screw the planks and beams together. They needed each other and support each other. Both with their own strengths and talents.

Differences disappear.

Volunteering binds people together. From all different backgrounds. The doctor with a successful medical practice, the legal advisor, the high schooler and the guy with a criminal record reintegrating into society. It doesn’t really matter who you are of where you are from. We can all hold a broom and sweep the floors. Old or young, with blond or black hair, male or female. We all just become people that are willing to help someone else.

Motivation is real.

It’s not because of the money. It’s not because of that one free Saturday without obligation. It’s about truly wanting to be somewhere that matters to you. Because you are passionate and enthusiastic for a project or organization. Maybe gardening isn’t your favourite thing, but digging holes is. Maybe nailing planks isn’t your thing, but preparing lunch is. You do something because you love it, not because you have to. And that is the best way to find yourself.