Honoring Community Heart & Soul Volunteers During National Volunteer Month

By Community Heart & Soul

Great Falls Heart & Soul Team of volunteers engaging with residents of Great Falls, South Carolina.
Great Falls Heart & Soul Team of volunteers engaging with residents of Great Falls, South Carolina.
National Volunteer month logo

Community Heart & Soul® is a resident-driven process that makes room for everyone who wants to be involved in a community. Volunteers are vital to Community Heart & Soul, which is why we are so excited to honor local Heart & Soul volunteers during National Volunteer Month! We hope you enjoy hearing their stories in our Volunteer Voices video series.

Community Benefits from Participating in Community Heart & Soul

Heart & Soul towns experience a range of benefits from increased volunteerism to improved economic conditions.

Pat Lindsay-Harvey of Willingboro, New Jersey shares one example of how her community has benefitted from the process:

“Community Heart & Soul made sense because it was very methodical. It had a process, it had a procedure, which has really helped us get more of our residents involved. I can’t tell you how many people are more involved in community because of the Heart & Soul initiative. The people that never have done anything are now going to council meetings, they are filling out the citizen forms to get on committees. It has really helped.”

Pat Lindsay-Harvey of Willingboro, New Jersey

Hear from more Heart & Soul volunteers as they share the most meaningful benefits they’ve seen from the Community Heart & Soul process:

Why Volunteer with Community Heart & Soul?

There are many reasons to get involved with Community Heart & Soul in your small city or town whether you want to steer change in your community, bring in new voices, or share your own perspective.

Star Poole, a volunteer with Heart of Williamsport in Williamsport, Pennsylvania shares, “Having a volunteer position—even a couple months—will show you the meaning of being empowered and having ownership and being productive. A lot of people feel like they are missing something, or maybe there is a lack of something. Maybe your community is missing you, maybe they are missing your viewpoint, maybe they are missing your perspective. All you need to do is get out there and let people know it is there. That is what Community Heart & Soul really taught me.”

Volunteers from Heart & Soul towns highlight motivations for sharing their time and talents with the local Heart & Soul team in the following video:

Personal Gains from Participating in Community Heart & Soul

Volunteering with Community Heart & Soul is personally rewarding!

For Rich Rehman in Hammonton, New Jersey, the personal benefits of volunteering are plentiful. He shares, “It has given me the opportunity to meet new people, to form some new relationships, and make some new friendships through the process. It has also given me the satisfaction and the comfort of knowing that I am helping our community. I’m not just taking from the community, I’m actually giving back to the community, and that is something that is important to me personally.”

Heart & Soul team members from across the country share what they value about the Heart & Soul process and what they’ve personally gained from being involved:

Favorite Things about Volunteering with Community Heart & Soul

While many volunteers share their time with Community Heart & Soul to better their community and themselves, they often stay because the work is enjoyable and gratifying.

Camille Heart is a youth volunteer in Winchendon, Massachusetts. In talking about what she enjoys about the experience, she says, “I love how community-driven the Heart & Soul process is–the flexibility, the commitment of residents, and how inclusive we can make it. There is something in it for everyone—all ages, all demographics, from all walks of life. It is something for the entire community.”

Watch volunteers describe the fun, joyful, and most meaningful parts of volunteering with their community’s Heart & Soul effort:

Why Community Heart & Soul Is a Good Fit for My Time and Talents

Community Heart & Soul offers opportunities for everyone in the community to contribute their skills and voice in some way. In the final video of our Volunteer Voices series, volunteers reflect on why involvement with Community Heart & Soul was a good fit for their time, talents, and interests.

Fawne DeRosia, an artist based in Thomaston, Georgia was able to bring some of her artistic talents and resources to the Thomaston-Upson Community Heart & Soul team. “I was happy to use my talents in any way possible that would help out the Heart & Soul effort. I helped design the logo for Thomaston-Upson Community Heart & Soul. I was very happy to offer up my studio for meetings and brainstorming sessions.”

See ways other volunteers have connected their talents with Community Heart & Soul:

Interested in Volunteering?

There are many ways to get involved with Community Heart & Soul in your small city or town. Use our map to see if there is an active Heart & Soul effort in your community. If not, consider being the spark who excites others to begin the process. Our team is eager to talk to you about ways to get started, and how you can use a Community Heart & Soul Seed Grant to get funding to kickstart your efforts. Contact us to learn more.