Why do I volunteer

  • Published
  • By Master Sgt. Justin Medeiros
  • 341st Space Wing Plans and Programs
Since I was old enough to play outside, I have had a ball in my hands and been infatuated with sports. As a kid, I played just about every major sport there was available to play - football, basketball, baseball, volleyball, you name it, I did it.

I made a lot of friends and I steered clear of temptations around me because I was involved in something that was important to me.

One of the most important aspects of sports is the coach. I remember every good coach (coaches I liked and enjoyed playing for), as well as every not-so-good coach (coaches that were too strict or just didn't take coaching very seriously). I remember how both types of coaches influenced me and my life.

As an adult, I decided to volunteer as a coach because I wanted to show kids that playing sports can be fun and to also pass on my knowledge to them. I have enjoyed playing sports my whole life, so I figured, "Why not pass that feeling on to someone else?" Although I am a paid, high school coach now, I have volunteered to coach youth baseball, football, basketball and volleyball off and on for most of my adult life. I never coached for the championship, although my teams have won a few. I coached for the kids and for the enjoyment they got from the game. There is nothing like the feeling I get from watching a child smile when they do something positive. Watching children make new friends and communicate with other kids made every coaching experience special for me.

To be a coach, just like anything else you may volunteer for, takes time and patience. You give up a lot of your off-duty time, it can take you away from your own family and it can be as frustrating as it is rewarding. What you need to decide is what volunteering means to you, personally.

Volunteers don't get monetary compensation for what they do, but your payment will come from somewhere else. Mine always came from the kids.

The enjoyment I got from watching them made it all worthwhile to me. Have you ever seen a child's smile when their mom or dad sees them do something special? I have, and believe me, there is no feeling like it.

Volunteering is not about what you do, it is about why you do it. If you want to feel special about yourself, give it a try. I promise you, no matter what it is that you volunteer to do, you will not regret it when you experience what it does for someone else. 
'Day of Caring' volunteers needed

Looking for a volunteer opportunity that will let you experience those rewarding feelings? The perfect venue is just around the corner.

The "Day of Caring" has been held for many years in conjunction with the annual Combined Federal Campaign and this year, it takes place Oct. 12.

Its success relies heavily on the volunteer support from Malmstrom. Last year, more than 150 Airmen came forward to lend a hand. Volunteers will spend the day assisting the elderly and needy residents of Great Falls get their yards and homes ready for winter. Chores range from raking leaves and trimming shrubs to vacuuming carpets and washing dishes, to cleaning storm windows and getting them hung, to a variety of other odd jobs. "Teams" of volunteers work together to accomplish requested tasks - no one goes out there alone.

If you aren't much on housework or yard work, Meals on Wheels will also need volunteers to deliver the noon meals that day. It offers the regular delivery staff a chance to take a day off.

Refreshments will be available in the morning and a complimentary chili feed will be provided for lunch.

Here's a recap of the important information:
WHO: Anyone from Team Malmstrom, including family members
WHAT: "Day of Caring" Volunteer Opportunity
WHEN: Oct. 12 starting at 8:30 a.m.
WHERE: Meet at the main Post Office, 215 1st Ave N., where "assignments" will be given out
WHY: Because it is the right thing to do!

For more information or to sign up to help, call 2nd Lt. Tamara Wyatt at 731-2851 or e-mail her at tamara.wyatt@malmstrom.af.mil. There is also a volunteer sign-up sheet located on the 10-day share drive in the folder entitled CFC2007, subfolder "Day of Caring."