Volunteering is never a waste of time.

23rd December 2019

My name is Angel Beno, I am 24 years old, and I work for Raleigh Tanzania as a skills-based volunteer project officer. I joined livelihood project in 2015 a programme that is designed to educate and fund young people, so they can establish and develop their own businesses by utilising what they have and how to best use it. Luckily this project was introduced in my village (Lulasi village), and since this project is delivered freely, I decided to join and be one of the entrepreneurs. After finishing all the training, I succeeded on getting the funding, however, I turned it down, so I can also be a volunteer and share what I have learnt with other young people.

When I said I will be a volunteer, I knew what I wanted to do and achieve, however I didn’t know what I will get in return. I started my volunteering journey in 2015 with Raleigh Tanzania; I was working on another one of Raleigh projects, Water Sanitation and Hygiene (WASH), an amazing experience, which made me continue volunteering in another level which was team leading. At the age of 21, I became a team leader, leading a diverse group of 28 young people from UK and Tanzania. Volunteering as a team leader made me grow so much as a person; one of the skills I have learned was decision making, because in any decision I made, it was never about thinking what is best for me, but always thinking of what is best for the whole team. Not only did volunteering achieve my goal of sharing what I learned as an entrepreneur with other young people, but also, I got so much more in return, such as self-confidence and trusting what I can do. For example, in my whole life I never dreamed of ever becoming a project officer, however the volunteering experience has helped me reach where I am and what I am doing right now, and this is due to a combination of confidence, self-belief, setting goals, hard work and no unnecessary complaints; doing something without expecting anything in return. Not only did the experience teach me to be understanding with everyone but also, being patient, which is something that everyone really needs, either at work or in our daily life.7

For anyone out there who doesn’t understand the importance of volunteering, I would advise them to register to any volunteering organizations, because you may not become like me but you can became whom you wish to be in the future with all the experience you will get. I always like to use this quote “The one I want to be started off just like me” – you can be that person you wish so bad to be. Volunteering is never a waste of time.

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