Youth Forward Scholarship 2017 – Volunteering in Nature

Name: Nicholas Woolfolk
From: Richmond, Virginia
Grade: 11th
School: Thomas Jefferson High School
Votes: 0

Nicholas
Woolfolk

Volunteering
in Nature


Nature
is a place of freedom, beauty, and simplicity; however, due to humans
the beauty in nature has decreased steadily. Pollution is a serious
problem that affects everyone in the world, which is why the area I
chose to volunteer in is nature. I wanted to see a change in my local
community through picking up trash; and a lot of it. As a Boy Scout I
am used to doing conservation projects my whole life so I transferred
the skills I’ve learned into making a positive outlook. Usually I
volunteer an hour per week on the weekend due to schoolwork and
extracurricular activities I participate in. Even though it is only
an hour it is an exhausting hour. Most of the time I go to Bryan
Park, a local park down the street from where I live, and pick up
trash in the streams or off path locations. I put all the trash into
a huge plastic bag and dispose of it properly after I am finished.

My
responsibility as a volunteer is to attend public parks and clean up
the environment. Sometimes I will try to convince friends or fellow
Boy Scouts to attend with me. The hardest challenge I have faced
being a volunteer would have to be balancing my International
Baccalaureate courses with volunteering. During the week and weekends
I have a plethora of work that needs to be completed. Thankfully, I
know how to time manage which is a life saver.

The
satisfaction I receive from working in my local community is very
humbling. I feel honored and have a great self-image after each hour
of hard work. Holding a trash bag full of trash makes it ten times
better because I know I am actually making a difference in my
community. That right there is the one thing I’ve learned from my
volunteer position; is that anyone can make a difference. Even if it
is a small difference you took the time, put in the effort and
received a result that will positively affect you and the nature
around you and your peers.

In
the future my activities will realistically mean little to the world
but huge in my mind. Global warming and pollution are globally wide
problems that need globally wide solutions. However, I am looking
forward into a brighter future that deals with a cleaner planet.
Forward looking is a term that means looking at future events or
problems and being prepared with a solution or knowledge as to what
to do. My personal goal through my volunteer hours and activities is
to create a safer, cleaner and more presentable environment in my
community. If I were to come back in 10 through 30 years my volunteer
activities would have made a difference locally but not globally. In
Bryan park pollution would definitely not be as big as it would be if
I didn’t pick up trash; but that is only a minuscule part of the
entire Earth.


Join our Facebook group "Volunteers for a Better World".