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  • Jennifer Filzen

Volunteering is a Great Antidepressant

While everyone gets down once in a while, depression in the age of COVID-19 is another beast entirely. With shelter-in-place orders and families sequestered at home, finding ways to feel connected to others and your community can seem almost impossible. Thankfully, volunteering is a great way to help combat these feelings while helping to impact your communities.


Service to others can be one of the most potent forms of self-care available. Volunteering can improve mental health while contributing to society. By helping people form connections over shared causes, we can feel less isolated, which may help ease the strain on those with depression.


While we make those connections, we also change the way we think. By meeting new people and collaborating on a common goal, we begin to see the world from different perspectives. Another great part about volunteering is that many volunteering activities are outdoors and active in nature. By getting outside and being active in the environment, even with social distancing requirements, we improve our moods and get much-needed fresh air and sunlight. Volunteering with animals may also have similar effects.


Of course, some volunteering activities will be unavailable until shelter-in-place restrictions ease, but now’s the time to get active! Check out your local volunteering websites and see if you can even do remote volunteering. There are all sorts of volunteering activities you can engage in right now at all comfort levels. Whether you volunteer for a local political campaign by phone banking or help deliver food and groceries to the elderly in your community, do some research and get to it! It’s the best form of self-care when you can help yourself while helping your community.


If you'd like to donate your car to help someone recover from a natural disaster, reach out to cars2ndchance@gmail.com to donate a vehicle that runs, and clunkers4charity@gmail.com to donate a vehicle that does not. Check out their respective websites https://cars2ndchance.org/ and https://www.clunkers4charity.org/.

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