The Health Benefits of Helping Others
When life becomes stressful, it’s not uncommon to rely on exercise, meditation, or self-care techniques in order to cope. While these are all great options, there’s a less well-known stress-relieving technique that has also been shown to improve both one’s physical and mental health. Helping others in need through volunteer work or charitable giving is a great way to recharge while making an important and lasting contribution to your community.
Altruism has always been seen as good for your soul, but research conducted by the Corporation for National & Community Service has revealed that charitable work can actually make one’s heart stronger as well. Some of the other established health benefits of charitable giving include lower blood pressure, lower stress levels and better physical and psychological well-being. Giving has been shown to increase a person’s overall happiness as well as their emotional connection to the community. Volunteering also offers an opportunity to further your career goals through networking or learning a new skill.
Nonprofit organizations across the country rely on volunteers to provide necessary labor and services so they can continue their important work in the community. Here at Ochsner, our volunteers serve in a variety of positions including patient care, greeting and support service areas, hospital administrative duties and other special projects. Each day, they help us by:
- Visiting with patients and assisting staff members.
- Serving as greeters and assisting patients and family members with finding their way around the hospital.
- Helping to deliver mail, magazines and packages to the intended recipients.
- Assisting Ochsner staff members with things like answering phones, entering data and filing documents.
- Assisting with pet therapy, music entertainment in our atriums and assisting with rotating art exhibits.
While certain individuals may not have the time or ability to volunteer, there is nothing more powerful than knowing that you have changed or even saved someone’s life. In addition to the selfless gifts of time and talent, generous individuals can enjoy the benefits of helping others through a donation to their favorite cause or charity.
At Ochsner, our donors are a critical part of our ability to pursue research, education and innovations in patient care and treatment. Ochsner donors have been responsible for improvements to critical care, increased participation in clinical trials and advancements in patient care.
No matter what your circumstances allow, there is a way for you to give back to a cause that’s important to you. In doing so, you will almost certainly accomplish more than just helping your fellow citizens and may even become healthier as a result!
Our generous donors and volunteers change and save lives every day. Learn how you can help support our mission.