Youth Forward scholarship 2016 – Why I Volunteer

Name: Alexa Nault
From: Indianapolis, IN
Grade: 12th
School: Cardinal Ritter High School
Votes: 0

Volunteering is one of the greatest aspects of my life. It has opened
me up and allowed me to meet so many new people. It also shows you
the vast amount of different situations and cultures within your
community. In the past, I have volunteered at Anna’s House, a local
food pantry, and the Indianapolis Veterans’ Affairs Hospital. I
chose the food pantry because I’d gone for school and after one
time, I enjoyed it so much I just kept going! I spent lots of time
volunteering at the Veterans’ hospital because I wish to be a
doctor one day and being in that environment would benefit me as well
as those I was helping. Currently, I am volunteering at the Humane
Society of Indianapolis 2-3 times a week. I love it there! I am a
huge animal lover and I truly believe these dogs need just as much
help as us two-legged creatures. Walking them and getting them to
destress after long nights in their kennels is great to see. Watching
their tails go from shy to excited always puts a smile on my face.
Not only the dogs, but also those that come in to adopt make me love
what I do. Seeing people, who need a companion so badly, come in and
find the perfect mate is so rewarding. I truly believe everyone needs
a four-legged friend.

At Anna’s House, I typically volunteered once a week for a few hours, but it
was difficult because I couldn’t drive for the majority of that
year. I volunteered there for about 4 months. My responsibilities
varied. Often I took food to those visiting our free restaurant. It
was nice to give those that cannot afford a night out, a special meal
away from home. At the Veterans’ hospital, I went 2-3 times a week,
with about 6 hours a week. This went on from August 2015- December
2015. While I was there, I was a nurse’s aide. I cleaned exam
rooms, sorted papers, filled envelopes, and occasionally answered
phones. Now, at the Humane Society, I get anywhere from 4-7 hours a
week. I’ve been there since December 2015. During these hours, I
walk the dogs mostly, but I also clean out kennels and make sure they
all have water in their bowls!

My biggest challenge I’ve come across thus far is the workers at the Humane
Society. I know in my heart what I am doing is great and important,
but when I am there I do not feel appreciated by the workers. They
are not welcoming or very friendly at all. I will stay with it
because I love it so much, but being with those kind of people has
been a challenge.

The satisfaction I get from volunteering is purely the joy I see in other people. It
is great to interact with so many different kinds of people with so
many different backgrounds. Helping them have a better day is so

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