This week is National Volunteer Week and it has me thinking about how I’ve been working with the volunteers of Hire Heroes USA for just over two years now. Our volunteer program is very unique; all activities are scheduled on an as-needed basis and we hardly ever get to see our 750 volunteers face-to-face… but I can tell you that our volunteers are awesome.
Yeah, yeah, I know. “Awesome” is totally overused, especially when it comes to describing volunteers. They are ALL awesome, right? Volunteers give freely of their time to do good or help others. But the volunteers of Hire Heroes USA are different because they truly inspire awe within me; just last year they gave over 3000 hours of their time. Every new volunteer who comes on board brings a wealth of knowledge that can help a military veteran or spouse with their job search in a multitude of ways.
Our volunteers participate in skills-based volunteering, an innovative approach that utilizes a person’s experience, expertise, and skills to achieve the mission of an organization. Hire Heroes USA staff members provide a foundation for a job seeker through a professional resume, coaching, and motivation (among other things). Volunteers complement that foundation by offering industry insight, interview practice, guidance or a sounding board to U.S. military members, veterans, and military spouses. They have unprecedented access to professionals in almost any industry who are willing to share, connect, and support.
What I love most about Hire Heroes USA is that our mission of empowering military members, veterans, and spouses to succeed in the civilian workforce leads to results that you might not think of right away. Meaningful work, enough money to pay the bills, being able to take care of your family… these are all benefits that come out of that mission. Helping our clients land great jobs can reduce the ‘typical’ negative outcomes you often hear about related to veterans, things like homelessness, suicide, or untreated mental health issues.
Hire Heroes USA volunteers choose to volunteer in a role that is both challenging and meaningful; they change lives with the support they’re providing. I am so grateful to each volunteer for choosing to give their time and talents to Hire Heroes USA. Their contributions to this organization are absolutely vital to its mission and its success. And they’re awesome. #NationalVolunteerWeek #NVW
*Written by Lindsey Acciarito, Volunteer Coordinator *