1. It makes a difference
The path to total gender equality is still underway. As of 2020, women in Alberta still have the most significant gender pay gap in Canada. Some women earn as much as $31,100.00 less than their male counterparts, and 34% of single mothers live in poverty. This gap is even more pronounced for women who face multiple forms of discrimination.
Women also do twice as much paid work as men, including child-care, and are overrepresented in low-paying jobs. COVID-19 brought even more challenges to many women. One StatsCan report noted that pandemic job losses hit women harder than men.
However, here’s some good news:
In 2020, the Women’s Centre responded to more than 50,172 contacts from women, which means that 50,172 women had access to basic needs and a sense of community.
Undoubtedly, it would have been impossible for the Women’s Centre to connect with this many women without the support of our 750 volunteers.
2. It's good for you
Have you ever noticed that volunteering and connecting with others tends to make you feel good? Part of our vision at the Women’s Centre is for women in Calgary to benefit from a strong sense of community, as we believe women need strong social connections to thrive.
These connections are often made at the Women’s Centre through volunteering.
Time and time again, studies have shown that volunteering is beneficial for mental health. Additionally, it takes a positive toll on the body, even having potential impacts on your health.
A study noted by StatsCan found that: “Research has established links between social networks and health outcomes,” and that “a sense of community belonging is highly correlated with physical and mental health.”
3. Gain experience
Here at the Women’s Centre, we are passionate about women helping and supporting other women. Volunteering offers an excellent opportunity to help others while growing personally and professionally.
As per StatsCan: “About one-half (50%) of volunteers aged 15 to 24 who were employed said volunteering helped improve their chances of success in their job.”
Many people list volunteer work on their resumes to highlight their skills and personal values, which is another way in which volunteering can benefit women professionally.