I used to believe that community service brought more self-gratification than it did to others around you. People always say how community service is about helping others out and what a big difference in the world you are making by devoting your time for others instead of yourself. However, the hospital I volunteered at was filled with kids performing community service because it would look good on their college resume or because it was a requirement from their school to volunteer a certain amount of hours.
However, one day, as I was discharging a patient, I realized how much of a difference volunteering in a hospital can have on people. She told me how crappy her stay at the hospital was, but it put a smile on her face to see such a young person devoting their time to helping out others and making their stay at the hospital better by talking to them and listening to them.
Ever since that occurred, it would frustrate me to hear how the volunteers would complain of how tired they were that they had to do such a remedial task. Some of them didn’t realize what a big difference they were making. It was true that delivering medication and charts to nurses and doctors wasn’t the most exciting thing in the world, but there was a lot more to community service than those tasks. I hope that soon enough all people who volunteer would realize what a difference they are making.