In My View: Volunteering
Published 09:21 on 9 Dec 2021
As I come to the end of my 5 year tenure on the board of Chichester Chamber of Commerce and Industry, the last 2 of which were as Chair, it has led me to reflect somewhat on the power of volunteering.
Everywhere I look and nearly everyone I speak to volunteers their time in some way, to organisations and causes that relate to their lives, value and philosophies. I really do believe that our communities are built on and run by an army of volunteers. Without which our communities would not be as rich as they are.
Volunteering at Chichester Chamber of Commerce has given me great opportunities for personal development. Working with the other volunteer directors on the board as well as the delivery team with their huge amount of knowledge and experience, I learnt from them. It gave me confidence in public speaking, both on-line and in the real world, I learnt more about people management and engagement, crisis management, recruitment and strategy, to name but a few.
This is the great thing about volunteering, it is always two way. The more you give, then the more you get out of it. Whether that is skills, knowledge, personal contacts, personal fulfilment or to feel part of a community. Volunteering has to be a win win, without volunteers then many organisations would cease to exist, many people would go without and things wouldn't happen. But, without the volunteers getting something from it, then it would be hard to find people to fulfil these roles.
For me though, the most important thing about volunteering at Chichester Chamber of Commerce was giving to, and, being part of the community of businesses and business people, whether they were from the not for profit sector, private sector or public sector. The businesses that make the Chichester District a fantastic place to live and work.
If you are looking for ways to volunteer then the Chamber can certainly help. Our membership is diverse and includes many not for profit organisations who I am sure would love to hear from you. It is a win for everyone, but most importantly it is a win for our communities.
Author: Gareth Sear, The Business Hothouse, former Chair of the Chichester Chamber of Commerce and Industry
Published in Chichester Observer: Nov 2021
Last updated 13:42 on 11 May 2022