It turns out an oft-cited New Year resolution, volunteering, is not so readily discarded as that of losing weight. In the US in 2013, 62.6 million adults volunteered 7.7 billion hours and the estimated value of that service is $173 billion. The benefits of volunteering and the altruistic giving of time are well documented. The activity provides an antidote to depression and a boost to well-being, qualities that are difficult to define but easy to recognize and easier to live with.
Those folks who have donated time in the Dunn Gardens understand the significance of volunteering for a cause that makes your heart sing—it is why docents, event caterers, parking guards, ‘weeders’, photographers, ‘tent erectors’, and board members keep coming back year after year. The adjective that leaps to the top is satisfying. It is akin to the feeling you get when a two-year old gives you a slobbery kiss with his arms around your neck. No one can take it from you.
As is true of most nonprofits Dunn Gardens keep records of the time volunteers donate. It provides evidence of wide support when making grant requests and pleading a cause. And the Gardens understand that not all volunteer work is fully reported which makes those of us who work at the Dunn feel humble. 2015 will be a year when volunteers are needed, perhaps even more than usual, since we will be proudly celebrating one hundred years of being. We hope you will consider the Dunn as somewhere to volunteer. We can promise you satisfaction and it will be an easier resolution to keep than losing weight!