Let each man be judged by his deeds, I have paid my price to live with myself on the terms that I willed.
--Rudyard KiplingSubmitted by Nancy Sutter, Volunteer Coordinator for Peel Children's Centre
The gain a man witholds from his brother becomes his own deprivation.
--UnknownSubmitted by Karen McCumber
Here's to all volunteers, those dedicated people who believe in all work and no pay.
--Robert OrbenSubmitted by Charlie Ripple, VISTA Volunteer, Community Housing Partnership, Minnesota/USA
He who upsets a thing should know how to rearrange it.
--Sierra Leonean ProverbSubmitted by John Stankiewicz, President, Northern Ohio Valley Area Search and Rescue, WV, USA
When spider webs unite, they can tie up a lion.
--Ethiopian ProverbSubmitted by John Stankiewicz, President, Northern Ohio Valley Area Search and Rescue, WV, USA
Give yourself fully to your endeavors. Decide to construct your character through excellent actions and determine to pay the price of a worthy goal. The trials you encounter will introduce you to your strengths.
--Epictetus Submitted by Cassie Diaz-Bello, Assistant Staff Counsel for the ABA Center for Pro Bono, Illinois USA
You must give some time to your fellow man. Even if it's a little thing, do something for which you get not pay but the privilege of doing it.
--Albert SchweitzerSubmitted by Jacki Lansman
If you want happiness for an hour -- take a nap. If you want happiness for a day -- go fishing. If you want happiness for a month -- get married. If you want happiness for a year -- inherit a fortune. If you want happiness for a lifetime -- help someone else.
--Chinese ProverbSubmitted by Jacki Lansman
In every community, there is work to be done. In every nation, there are wounds to heal. In every heart, there is the power to do it.
--Marianne WilliamsonSubmitted by Alan D. Finney, Volunteer Coordinator-KUHF Radio, Texas, USA
It is not the critic who counts, not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood, who strives valiantly, who errs and comes short again and again because there is no effort without error and shortcomings, who knows the great devotion, who spends himself in a worthy cause, who at best knows in the end the high achievement of triumph and who at worst, if he fails while daring greatly, knows his place shall never be with those timid and cold souls who know neither victory nor defeat.
--Theodore RooseveltSubmitted by Liz Mirzaian, Manager, Department of Volunteer Resources, California Science Center, Los Angeles, California
We are not called upon to do all the good possible, but only that which we can do.
Always do right. This will gratify some people and astonish the rest.
--Mark TwainSubmitted by Cindy McMahon, Coordinator, Volunteer Center of Asheville & Buncombe County, NC, US
Even if you are on the right track, you'll get run over if you just sit there.
--Will RogersSubmitted by Joan Perry, DVS, Bon Secours-St. Francis Hospital, Charleston, SC
All that is necessary for evil to flourish is for good men to do nothing.
--Edmond BurkeSubmitted by Elizabeth, KY/USA
Nobody made a greater mistake than he who did nothing because he could do only a little.
--Edmond BurkeSubmitted by Jackie Bowers, The Salvation Army - Territorial Volunteer Services Director - Central Territory, Illinois
Do all the good you can, by all the means you can, in all the ways you can, in all the places you can, at all the times you can, to all the people you can, as long as you ever can.
--John WesleySubmitted by Jenny Gerard, United Way, Georgia, USA
A volunteer is a person who believes that people can make a difference - and is willing to prove it.
--UnknownSubmitted by Mike Corbin, Membership Chair, Metropolitan Detroit Volunteer Administration Network
With a sweet tongue and kindness, you can drag an elephant by a hair.
--Persian ProverbSubmitted by Mike Corbin, Membership Chair, Metropolitan Detroit Volunteer Administration Network
Not being able to do everything is no excuse for not doing everything you can.
--Ashleigh BrilliantSubmitted by Mike Corbin, Membership Chair, Metropolitan Detroit Volunteer Administration Network
There are three ways of trying to win the young. There is persuasion, there is compulsion, and there is attraction. You can preach at them: that is a hook without a worm. You can say, "You must volunteer," and that is of the devil. You can tell them, "You are needed." That appeal hardly ever fails.
--K. Hahn, Readings from the Hurricane Island Outward Bound SchoolSubmitted by Sarah Oliver, Asst. Regional Director, Women in Community Service, Washington, USA
We must view young people not as empty bottles to be filled, but as candles to be lit.
--Robert H. ShafferSubmitted by Tammy Herron, Director of Volunteers, American Red Cross, Kingsport Chapter, TN USA
The essence of volunteerism is not giving part of a surplus one doesn't need, but giving part of one's self. Such giving is more than a duty of the heart, but a way people help themselves by satisfying the deeper spiritual needs that represent the best that is in us.
--Kathleen Kennedy TownsendSubmitted by Marcia Livingston, Consultant, Washington Mutual Bank, WA USA
Volunteer activities can foster enormous leadership skills. The nonprofit professional volunteer world is a laboratory for self-realization.
--Madeleine KuninSubmitted by Marcia Livingston, Consultant, Washington Mutual Bank, WA USA
Ain't Nothin' to It, But to Do it!
--Maya AngelouSubmitted by Selena, Volunteer Illini Projects, Inc., IL
We cannot live for ourselves alone.Our lives are connected by a thousand invisible threads, and along these sympathetic fibers, our actions run as causes and return to us as results.
--Herman MelvilleSubmitted by Phyllis J. Dorr, Volunteer and Intern Program Manager, Museum of Health
If you want to touch the past TOUCH A ROCK. If you want to touch the present TOUCH A ROSE. If you want to touch the future TOUCH A LIFE.
--UnknownSubmitted by Elaine Sonmor, Program Coordinator, Successful Mothers Support Program, Battlefords Health District, Saskatchewan, Canada
Plant flowers in others' gardens and your life becomes a bouquet!
--UnknownSubmitted by Lisa Letto, Coordinator, Nutrition Resource and Volunteer Centre, College of Pharmacy and Nutrition, University of Saskatchewan, Saskatchewan, Canada
It is from the numberless diverse acts of courage and belief that human history is shaped. Each time a man stands up for an ideal or acts to improve the lot of others or strikes out against injustice, he sends forth a tiny ripple of hope, and crossing each other from a million different centers of energy and daring, those ripples build a current that can sweep down the mightiest walls of oppression and resistance.
--Robert F. KennedySubmitted by Carol Freed
One is not born into the world to do everything but to do something.
--Henry David ThoreauSubmitted by Nan Hart, Director, RSVP and The Volunteer Center, Vermont, US
I slept and I dreamed that life is all joy, I woke and I saw that life is all service. I served and I saw that service is joy.
--Rabindranath TagoreSubmitted by Stacey Claire M. Carantit, Volunteer Coordinator - Conestoga View Nursing Home, Lancaster, PA
The measure of a life is not its duration, but its donation.
--Peter MarshallSubmitted by Cynthia McClure, Ph.D, Clinical Director, Southwestern Virginia Mental Health Institute, Virginia
We can't do much about the length of our lives, but we can do plenty about its width and depth.
--Evan EsarSubmitted by Cynthia McClure, Ph.D, Clinical Director, Southwestern Virginia Mental Health Institute, Virginia
Refusing to ask for help when you need it is refusing someone the chance to be helpful.
--UnknownSubmitted by Lorena Poppe, Program Coordinator, Pride, Inc., North Dakota
I am only one, but still I am one; I cannot do everything, but still I can do something; and because I cannot do everything I will not refuse to do the something that I can do.
--Edward HaleSubmitted by Amy Charpentier, Stetson University Circle K International President, Stetson University, Florida
The main quality of leadership..........is courage! If you can dream it, you can do it!
--Walt DisneySubmitted by Bill Weller, Director, Partners in Self Sufficiency, Clearwater, Florida
I am of the opinion that my life belongs to the community... and as long as I live, it is my privilege to do for it whatever I can. I want to be thoroughly used up when I die, for the harder I work, the more I live. I rejoice in life for its own sake. Life is no brief candle to me. It is a sort of splendid torch which I have got hold of for a moment and I want to make it burn as brightly as possible before handing it on to future generations.
--George Bernard Shaw, Irish PlaywrightSubmitted by Mellisa Ferland, Community Center Building Committee Chair, New Hampshire, USA
The best and most beautiful things in the world cannot be seen or even touched. They must be felt with the heart.
--Helen KellerSubmitted by Robin McCartha, RSVP of Richland and Lexington Counties, SC/USA
I have never been especially impressed by the heroics of people convinced that they are about to change the world. I am more awed by ... those who ... struggle to make one small difference after another.
--Ellen GoodmanSubmitted by James Noonan, Volunteer Program Manager, The Horizons Initiative, Boston, MA
First, there's the job-where the goal is simply to earn a living and support your family. Then there's the career--where you trace your progress through various appointments and achievements. Finally, there's the calling-- the ideal blend of activity and character that makes work inseparable from life.
--Robert BellaSubmitted by Marcia Ferris, Program Manager w/ NSSC, Brainerd MN USA
A candle loses nothing of its light when lighting another.
--Kahlil GibranSubmitted by Lauren Quaile, Bonner Scholar - University of Richmond
Where apathy is the master, all men are slaves.
--UnknownSubmitted by Anonymous
All that we send into the lives of others comes back into our own.
--UnknownSubmitted by Dorothy Thompson, SCP Director-The Salvation Army, NJ, USA
Remember, we all stumble, every one of us. That's why it's a comfort to go hand in hand.
--Emily KimbroughSubmitted by Ed Madara, Director, American & NJ Group Self-Help Group Clearinghouses
If you ever need a helping hand, it is at the end of your arm. As you get older you must remember you have a second hand. The first one is to help yourself. The second hand is to help others.
--Audrey HepburnSubmitted by Ed Madara, Director, American & NJ Group Self-Help Group Clearinghouses
A bit of fragrance always clings to the hand that gives roses.
--Chinese ProverbSubmitted by Ed Madara, Director, American & NJ Group Self-Help Group Clearinghouses
To ease another's heartache is to forget one's own.
--Abraham LincolnSubmitted by Ed Madara, Director, American & NJ Group Self-Help Group Clearinghouses
When you stop giving and offering something to the rest of the world, it's time to turn out the lights.
--George BurnsSubmitted by Anna Soulek, Student, Wyoming, USA
This is the true joy in life being used for a purpose recognized by yourself as a mighty one being a force of Nature instead of a feverish selfish little clod of ailments and grievances, complaining that the world will not devote itself to making you happy. . .
I am of the opinion that my life belongs to the whole community and as long as I live it is my privilege to do for it whatever I can. I want to be thoroughly used up when I die. For the harder I work the more I live. I rejoice in life for its own sake.
Life is no brief candle to me. It's a sort of splendid torch which I've got to hold up for the moment, and I want to make it burn as brightly as possible before handing it on to future generations.
--George Bernard ShawSubmitted by Harvey LeCato, Certified Trainer, Sertoma Int'l, Colorado
It is not enough to merely exist. It's not enough to say, 'I'm earning enough to live and support my family. I do my work well. I'm a good parent.' That's all very well. But you must do something more. Seek always to do some good, somewhere. Every person has to seek in his own way to make his own self more noble and to realize his own true worth. You must give some time to your fellow man. Even if it's a little thing, do something for those who have need of a man's help, something for which you get no pay but the privilege of doing it. For, remember, you don't live in a world all your own. Your brothers are here too.
--Albert Schweitzer Nobel Peace Prize winner, 1952 Submitted by Gene Budbill, Snohomish County Chapter, American Red Cross, Washington, USA
I did not find the world desolate when I entered it. My fathers planted for me before I arrived, so I plant for those who come after me.
--TalmudSubmitted by Mike Corbin, Membership Chair, Metropolitan Detroit Volunteer Administration Network
-- Marquis on a street corner Submitted by Fr. Bryan Bayda, The Welcome Home, Manitoba
Help one another; there's no time like the present and no present like the time.
-- James Durst, poet/songwriter/troubadour Submitted by Sarah H. Elliston, Sr Associate, Volunteer Resource Center , Cincinnati, OH, USA
Great opportunities to help others seldom come, but small ones surround us every day.
-- Sally Koch Submitted by Terry Mack, Manger of Volunteer Resources, The Support Network, Edmonton, Alberta, Canada
If every American donated five hours a week, it would equal the labor of twenty million full-time volunteers.
-- Whoopi Goldberg Submitted by Ann Rubin, Manager of Volunteer Services, Hospice of Michigan
Each one of us should lead a life stirring enough to start a movement.
-- Max Lucado, in On the Anvil Submitted by Anonymous
No act of kindness, no matter how small, is ever wasted.
-- Aesop Submitted by Judy P. King, Director of Volunteer Services, Georgia
There is only one thing worse than training your volunteers and having them leave - and that's not training them, and having them stay.
Submitted by Eileen Macmillan, American Friends of the University of Edinburgh, CA
There are two kinds of gratitude: The sudden kind we feel for what we receive, and the larger kind we feel for what we give.
-- Edward Arlington Robinson Submitted by Katherine Morton, Volunteer Program Coordinator, AIDS Calgary Awareness Association, Calgary, AB Canada
Remember that when you leave this earth, you can take with you nothing that you have received - only what you have given: a full heart, enriched by honest service, love, sacrifice and courage.
-- St. Francis of Assisi Submitted by Claire Rochon, Manager, Fund Development, Street Kids International, Canada
Unless your department has a budget infinitely greater than most, you will not get rich being a volunteer director/coordinator, but your life will be indescribably enriched by the people you meet and work with. A wise lady once told me that when you find your ideal job, you will do it for less than they pay you and when you find your calling you will do it for free. This is my ideal job. I hope you find yours.
-- Martin Tichenor, Volunteer Director for a medium security prison in Missouri, written to a newly "appointed" volunteer coordinator Submitted by Linda Lowe, Volunteer Coordinator, City of Thornton, Thornton, CO, USA
How wonderful that no one need wait a single moment to improve the world
-- Anne Frank Submitted by Sue Staggs, State Director, Tomorrows Leaders Today, Texas
Live as if you were to die tomorrow. Learn as if you were to live forever.
-- Gandhi Submitted by Devi Singh, India, AP (Hyderabad)
I have the audacity to believe that people everywhere can have three meals a day for their bodies, education and culture for their minds, and dignity, equality and freedom for their spirits. I believe that what self-centered people have torn down, other-centered people can build up.
-- Martin Luther King Submitted by John Richards, Aquinas College, Perth, Australia
I have an almost complete disregard of precedent, and a faith in the possibility of something better. It irritates me to be told how things have always been done. I defy the tyranny of precedent. I go for anything new that might improve the past.
-- Clara Barton Submitted by John Richards, Aquinas College, Perth, Australia
Make the most of yourself, for that is all there is of you.
-- Emerson Submitted by Linda Steed, Volunteer Coordinator, Long Term Care Ombudsman Program, Shawnee Alliance for Seniors
It's good to be blessed. It's better to be a blessing.
Submitted by Kathy Carter, Volunteer Coordinator of Foster Care Citizen Review of Palm Beach County
Here is a test to find whether your mission on earth is finished: if you are alive, it isn't.
-- Richard Bach Submitted by Mike Corbin, Membership Chair, Metropolitan Detroit Volunteer Administration Network
There are only two rules to change: One is to begin; the second is to continue.
Submitted by Sue Staggs, State Director, Tomorrows Leaders Today, Texas
There are three kinds of people: Those who make things happen, those who watch things happen, and those who say, 'what happened?'
-- Casey Stengel Submitted by Sue Staggs, State Director, Tomorrows Leaders Today, Texas
You have to become involved to make an impact. No one is impressed with the won/loss record of the referee.
-- John Holcomb Submitted by Sue Staggs, State Director, Tomorrows Leaders Today, Texas
Whatever you do may seem insignificant, but it is most important that you do it.
-- Gandhi Submitted by Douglas Eggleston, Director, Emergency Services - American Red Cross, VA
As many arrows, loosed several ways, come to one mark...so many a thousand actions, once afoot, end in one purpose.
-- William Shakespeare Henry V, Act I, Sc.2 Submitted by Sue Smith, Great Works Regional Land Trust, ME
Past the beggar and the suffering walks he who asks, 'Why, oh God, do you not do something for these people?' To which God replied, 'I did do something, I made you.'
-- Sufi saying Submitted by Mike Corbin, Membership Chair, Metropolitan Detroit Volunteer Administration Network
You've got to think about 'big things' while you're doing small things, so that all the small things go in the right direction.
-- Alvin Toffler Submitted by David Ontonovich, CDHVS, National Coordinator, Volunteer Resources - Canadian AIDS Treatment Information Exchange
The significant problems we face cannot be solved at the same level of thinking we were at when we created them.
-- Albert Einstein Submitted by Jill C. Howland
You can't leave footprints in the sands of time while sitting down.
-- Nelson Rockefeller Submitted by Mary St. John, Grants Admin., Pets & People Humane Society, Inc., Oklahoma USA
Be the change that you wish to see in the world
-- Gandhi Submitted by Brian Cugelman, IYV Webmaster, UNV , Germany
If your heart is full, it shouldn't matter if your pockets are empty.
-- Karen Dawson, Volunteer at Clay Elementary School Clay, WV Submitted by Beth Anderson, AmeriCorps*VISTA, West Virginia
The greatest virtues are those which are most useful to other people.
-- Aristotle Submitted by Marilyn Gitsidis, Program Assistant, Seniors Support Services, Hellenic Home for the Aged, Toronto, Ontario, Canada
A man never stands as tall as when he kneels to help a child.
-- Knights of Pythogoras Submitted by Tara Huxley, Camp Director Boys and Girls Club Community Services of Calgary, Alberta, Canada
The most pathetic person in the world is someone who has sight, but has no vision.
-- Helen Keller Submitted by Raven Alexander, Student Director, Florida Atlantic University Volunteer Center, Florida
To keep a lamp burning we have to keep putting oil in it.
-- Mother Teresa Submitted by Mike Corbin, Membership Chair, Metropolitan Detroit Volunteer Administration Network
Noble deeds and hot baths are the best cures for depression.
-- Dodie Smith Submitted by Mike Corbin, Membership Chair, Metropolitan Detroit Volunteer Administration Network
You can't build a reputation on what you are going to do.
-- Henry Ford Submitted by Mike Corbin, Membership Chair, Metropolitan Detroit Volunteer Administration Network
Don't wait for the last judgement - it takes place every day.
-- Albert Camus Submitted by Mike Corbin, Membership Chair, Metropolitan Detroit Volunteer Administration Network
Every society honors its live conformists and its dead troublemakers.
-- Mignon McLaughlin Submitted by Mike Corbin, Membership Chair, Metropolitan Detroit Volunteer Administration Network
Far better it is to dare mighty things, to win glorious triumps, even though checkered by failure, than to take rank with those poor spirits who neither enjoy much nor suffer much, because they live in the gray twilight that knows not victory or defeat.
-- Theodore Roosevelt Submitted by Robin Popik, City of Plano Volunteer Program, Texas
It is better to shoot for the moon and miss, than shoot for nothing and hit it.
Good ideas remain ideas - unless we act upon them.
Submitted by Andy Fryar, Vice President - Volunteering Australia, Australia
Some people see things as they are and say 'why', I look at things that never were and say 'why not'.
-- Robert F. Kennedy Submitted by Emma, North Carolina, USA
Knowing is not enough; we must apply. Willing is not enough; we must do.
-- Goethe Submitted by Dorman Stanley, CONTACT Lubbock, Texas
The best way to find yourself, is to lose yourself in the service of others.
-- Ghandi Submitted by Jackie Lonning, Co-VP of Scheduling, Student M.O.V.E. (Mobilizing Outreach Volunteer Efforts), Storm Lake, IA, USA
Destiny is not necessarily what we get out of life, but rather, what we give.
-- Cary Grant Submitted by Diego Ojanio Franco, Chairman, The Cedarwork Project, Inc., Quezon City, Philippines
One of the things I keep learning is that the secret of being happy is doing things for other people.
-- Dick Gregory Submitted by Linda Hutchinson, Volunteer Coordinator, Victim Services Program, Mountain Comprehensive Care Center, Kentucky USA
A civilization flourishes when people plant trees under which they will never sit.
-- Greek Proverb Submitted by Judy Gross, Volunteer Coordinator, Central Blood Bank of Pittsburgh
We are all like one-winged angels. It is only when we help each other that we can fly.
-- Luciano de Crescenzo Submitted by Lori Ropa, American Water Works Association, Denver, CO USA
Volunteerism is the voice of the people put into action. These actions shape and mold the present into a future of which we can all be proud.
Submitted by Helen Dyer, Parks Funding and Volunteer Coordinator, Teller County, CO Division of Parks
Life is never so busy that there is no time to serve.
Submitted by Sharon Tan
I don't know what your destiny will be, but one thing I do know: The only ones among you who will be really happy are those who have sought and found how to serve.
-- Albert Schweitzer Submitted by Deborah Stroup, Coordinator of Volunteers, Wolfner Library for the Blind and Physically Handicapped
He who does nothing for others does nothing for himself
-- Goethe Submitted by Susan E. Koch, Luther Crest Vol. Dir., PA.
Put yourself in someone's shoes" is a common phrase. But it is not a common thing that we do everyday. We are, most of the time, self-centred. Especially in this modern, fast-paced life. It is only when we stop for a moment and give our time to others, that we realise the true meaning of empathy.
Submitted by Abdul Manan Bin Hassan, ASP, PRIS DEPT, Changi, Singapore
Most of us in volunteer programs now realize that those 1000 points of light of George Bush #1 are really 500 candles burning at both ends and the only thing to trickle down from Reganomics was budget cuts.
Submitted by Nita Moser, Volunteer Coordinator, Battered Women's Project
A verse to start community meetings:
"A healthy social life is found only, when in the mirror of each soul the whole community finds its reflection, and when in the whole community the virtue of each one is living."
-- Rudolf Steiner, Austrian Philosopher and Scientist Submitted by Sybille B. Hahn, Executive Director, CANES Home Support Services
The mode in which the inevitable comes to pass is through effort.
-- Oliver Wendell Holmes Submitted by Mike Corbin, Membership Chair, Metropolitan Detroit Volunteer Administration Network
Be ashamed to die until you have won some victory for humanity.
-- Horace Mann Submitted by Mike Corbin, Membership Chair, Metropolitan Detroit Volunteer Administration Network
First say to yourself what you would be; and then do what you have to do.
-- Epictetus Submitted by Mike Corbin, Membership Chair, Metropolitan Detroit Volunteer Administration Network
I'm in the business of loving the hell out of people
-- Mother Waddles Submitted by Mike Corbin, Membership Chair, Metropolitan Detroit Volunteer Administration Network
They don't care how much you know, until they know how much you care.
Submitted by Desire'e Larson, Women's Way, North Dakota Breast and Cervical Cancer Early Detection Program
You have not lived until you have done something for someone who can never repay you.
Submitted by Lisa Clegg, Coordinator, M.O.V.R.C. Foster Grandparents Program
Unless someone like you cares a whole, awful lot. Things aren't going to get better, they're NOT!
-- Dr. Seuss, The Lorax Submitted by Sue Nelson, Agency Relations Director, Volunteer Jacksonville, Inc.
The deeds you do may be the only sermon some persons will hear today.
-- Saint Francis of Assisi Submitted by Mike Corbin, Membership Chair, Metropolitan Detroit Volunteer Administration Network
Better one friend with a dish of food than a hundred with a sigh.
-- Yiddish Proverb Submitted by Mike Corbin, Membership Chair, Metropolitan Detroit Volunteer Administration Network
Let us not love with words or tongue but with actions and in truth.
-- I John 3:18 Submitted by Mike Corbin, Membership Chair, Metropolitan Detroit Volunteer Administration Network
If you can't go where people are happier, try to make people happier where you are.
-- Ashleigh Brilliant Submitted by Mike Corbin, Membership Chair, Metropolitan Detroit Volunteer Administration Network
I shall pass through this world but once. Any good therefore that I can do or any kindness that I can show to any human being, let me do it now. Let me not defer or neglect it, for I shall not pass this way again.
-- Mahatma Gandhi Submitted by Mike Corbin, Membership Chair, Metropolitan Detroit Volunteer Administration Network
Let ... individuals make the most of what God has given them, have their neighbors do the same, and then do all they can to serve each other. There is no use in one man, or one nation, to try to do or be everything. It is a good thing to be dependent on each other for something, it makes us civil and peaceable.
-- Sojourner Truth (c. 17971883), African American suffragist and abolitionist. As quoted in History of Woman Suffrage, appendix—ch. 19, by Elizabeth Cady Stanton Submitted by Lois Gaetz, Director, St Cloud Area Faith in Action, MN/USA
To the world you may be one person, But to one person you may be the world.
Submitted by Anonymous
It is one of the beautiful compensations of life, that no man can sincerely help another without helping himself.
-- Ralph Waldo Emerson Submitted by Dominica Larkin, Volunteer Coordinator, The Duke of Edinburgh's Award, Canada
We ourselves feel that what we are doing is just a drop in the ocean. But the ocean would be less because of that missing drop.
-- Mother Theresa Submitted by Jenni
The broadest, and maybe the most meaningful definition of volunteering: Doing more than you have to because you want to, in a cause you consider good.
-- van Scheier (from Building Staff/Volunteer Relations) Submitted by Claudia Collier, Director, Volunteer Center of the YMCA
Throughout your life, there is a voice only you can hear. A voice which mythologists label "the call." A call to the value of your life. The choice of risk and individual bliss over the known and secure.
You may choose not to hear your spirit. You may prefer to build a life within the compound, to avoid risk. It is possible to find happiness within a familiar box, a life of comfort and control.
Or, you may choose to be open to new experiences, to leave the limits of your conditioning, to hear the call. Then you must act.
If you never hear it, perhaps nothing is lost. If you hear it and ignore it, your life is lost.
-- Jennifer James Submitted by Debra English, Volunteer Coordinator, HealthPartners
The heart of a volunteer is not measured in size, but by the depth of the commitment to make a difference in the lives of others.
Submitted by DeAnn Hollis
Those who say it cannot be done should not interrupt the person doing it.
-- Chinese Proverb Submitted by Alane Hill, Project Director, Friends Foster Grandparent Program
The winds of change shall not discourage the volunteer.
Submitted by Lorna Wilson
To laugh often and much; to win the respect of intelligent people and the affection of children; to earn the appreciation of honest critics and endure the betrayal of false friends; to appreciate beauty; to leave the world a bit better whether by a healthy child, a garden patch or a redeemed social condition; to know that even one life has breathed easier because you have lived. This is to have succeeded.
-- Ralph Waldo Emerson Submitted by Fiona Dawe, Executive Director, YouthNet, London, England
Which is more subversive—and corrosive—to believe in altruism or to see it simply as a cloak of self interest? Even if altruism did not exist, it would be necessary to believe in it. Pessimists in power are prone to despotism.
-- Frank Prochaska in Schools of Citizenship: Charity and Civic Virtue, Civitas: Institute for the Study of Civil Society, London, 2002 Submitted by Susan Ellis
It's easy to make a buck. It's a lot tougher to make a difference.
-- Tom Brokaw Submitted by Cathie Waugh, Volunteer Coordinator, Habitat for Humanity, Colorado
Being a man or a woman is a matter of birth. Being a man or a woman who makes a difference is a matter of choice.
-- Byron Garrett, staff member of Arizona's Governor Submitted by Nicolette Ryan, Volunteer Coordinator, Central Arizona Shelter Services
It is only through the eyes of others do you see yourself. It is only through the work of your own do you find the difference in others.
Submitted by Foo Ji-Wei, Volunteerism Through Oneself, Nanyang Technological University, Welfare Services Club, Singapore
If you have come to help me, you are wasting your time. But if you have come because your liberation is tied up with mine, then let us work together.
-- Lill Watson, aboriginal activist Submitted by Keith Goheen, Volunteer Coordinator, First State Community Action Agency, Delaware USA
You make a living by what you get, but you make a life by what you give.
-- Winston Churchill Submitted by Elise Slobodin, Planning Executive, UJA-Federation, New York USA
No person was ever honored for what he received. Honor is given by what he gave.
-- Calvin Coolidge Submitted by Joe Hammontree, 4-H AmeriCorps VISTA, Shiawassee MSU Extension, Michigan, USA
Too often we under-estimate the power of a touch, a smile, a kind word, a listening ear, an honest compliment, or the smallest act of caring, all of which have the potential to turn a life around.
-- Dr. Felice Leonardo Buscaglia Submitted by several colleagues
To serve, not to be served.
-- The charge to service for AARP members from Dr. Ethel Percy Andrus, AARP founder Submitted by Carolyn Hunter, ASD, AARP Utah, USA
Don't ever question the value of volunteers. Noah's Ark was built by volunteers; the Titanic was built by professionals.
Submitted by Dave Gynn, Coleman Professional Services, Ohio, USA
Volunteering is the ultimate exercise in democracy. You vote in elections once a year, but when you volunteer, you vote every day about the kind of community you want to live in.
-- Sue Premo, WI Submitted by Marjorie Moore, Minds Eye Information ServiceBelleville, IL, USA
There are many wonderful things that will never be done if you don't do them.
-- Charles D. Gill Submitted by Caitlin Rohrer, Girl Scouts - Trillium Council, Pennsylvania
The highest reward for a person's work is not what they get for it, but what they become because of it.
-- John Ruskin Submitted by Caitlin Rohrer, Girl Scouts, Trillium Council, Pennsylvania
If you insist on measuring yourself, place the tape around your heart rather than your head.
-- Carol Trabelle Submitted by Caitlin Rohrer, Girl Scouts, Trillium Council, Pennsylvania
At the end of our life our questions are simple: Did I live fully? Did I love well?
-- Jack Kornfield Submitted by Caitlin Rohrer, Girl Scouts, Trillium Council, Pennsylvania
Success in life has nothing to do with what you gain in life or accomplish for yourself. It's what you do for others.
-- Danny Thomas Submitted by Jack Gomez, Girl Scounts of Shagbark Council, Illinois
Paul Revere earned his living as a silversmith. But what do we remember him for? His volunteer work. All activism is volunteering in that it's done above and beyond earning a living and deals with what people really care passionately about. Remember, no one gets paid to rebel. All revolutions start with volunteers.
-- Susan J. Ellis Submitted by Susan in response to a workshop participant who heard Susan say this and wanted it shared.
Silence equals nonexistence. If I don't raise my voice, it's like I never existed.
-- Margaret Cho, Comedienne Revolution Submitted by Jennifer Smerud
When we honestly ask ourselves which person in our lives means the most to us, we often find that it is those who, instead of giving much advice, solutions, or cures, have chosen rather to share our pain and touch our wounds with a gentle and tender hand. The friend who can be silent with us in a moment of despair or confusion, who can stay with us in an hour of grief and bereavement, who can tolerate not knowing, not curing, not healing and face with us the reality of our powerlessness, that is a friend who cares.
-- Mercy Mission Kenya Submitted by Henri Nouwen
Help yourself. Volunteer.
So what's holding you back? Volunteer today.
Don't just stand there. Volunteer.
Do the right thing. Volunteer.
Submitted by Ahmed Amin
Never doubt that a small group of committed people can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has.
-- Margaret Mead Submitted by Maureen Stenquist
Volunteering is not a choice, it's a responsibility.
Submitted by Ashley E. Hyder
Someone asked the anthropologist Margaret Mead (1901-1978), "What is the first sign you look for, to tell you of an ancient civilization?" The interviewer had in mind a tool or article of clothing. Ms. Mead surprised him by answering, a "healed femur". When someone breaks a femur, they can't survive to hunt, fish or escape enemies unless they have help from someone else. Thus, a healed femur indicates that someone else helped that person, rather than abandoning them and saving themselves. Isn't that what we in philanthropy are all about? Healing femurs of one sort or another?
Submitted by Leslie Paige
Volunteers are seldom paid; not because they are worthless, but because they are PRICELESS!
Submitted by Jana Baker
Treat people as if they were what they ought to be, and help them become what they are capable of being.