For Immediate Release: Feb. 26, 2019
Information Contact: Renee Bade
Idaho teens Sarah Picker of Boise and Alexander Knoll of Post Falls were awarded the 2019 Prudential Spirit of Community Award. The award program, in its 24th year, honors young people in each state for outstanding acts of volunteerism.
Picker and Knoll will be awarded $1,000 each, an engraved medallion and an all-expense paid trip to Washington, D.C., for four days of national recognition events along with the top two honorees for the other 49 states.
Picker, 17, a senior at Boise Senior High School, has raised and trained four puppies over the past seven years to be service dogs for the Boise chapter of Guide Dogs for the Blind. She became involved after her older sister read a book about a “puppy raiser” and decided to give it a try.
A 2013 study from the Corporation for National and Community Service found volunteers had a 27 percent better chance of finding employment than those who don’t volunteer. Many Idaho CEOs also see the connection between volunteering and future employment.
“We hire a lot of young people,” said Connie Miller, CEO of Icon Credit Union, board member of Big Brothers Big Sisters and on the board development committee for Girl Scouts of Silver Sage Council Inc. “More than anything, we look for the volunteer spirit.”
With that in mind, here in their own words, are several reasons why volunteering can help job seekers find work.
- Volunteering is a state of mind that shows more to employers than simply the actions you accomplish while volunteering.
Too often when people think of volunteering it’s simply regarded as a nice thing that some people do. One might think, “I just don’t know how to get involved,” or perhaps, “I need to look for summer internship opportunities, not volunteering opportunities right now.” If you are still trying to find summer work experiences or internships, maybe it’s time to re-think what it actually means to volunteer and consider taking advantage of the numerous opportunities available at non-profit organizations.
Volunteering vs. Internships
Why do teachers, parents and businesses encourage and promote students’ finding internships? One word: experience. Internships help students gain a better understanding of what different occupations are really like. While internships are a great way to begin building a resume, volunteering can serve the same purpose. According to the Corporation for National and Community Service, those who volunteer have 27 percent higher odds of finding employment compared with those who don’t. Still not convinced? Consider some of the following reasons for volunteering: