Volunteering leads to a stronger community, says local Tisha Morgan, who spotlights a charity near and dear to her heart this month
Volunteering leads to a stronger community, says local Tisha Morgan, who spotlights a charity near and dear to her heart this month.
When you think of volunteering, what usually comes to mind? Some of you may think about the giving of time without compensation. Others might think of the overall good it does for our community and the organization involved. Some also may think of the positive impact it has on you and your family.
Hopefully, you’ve thought about giving back to your community in one form or another or already have an organization that you volunteer with. Volunteering can lead to so many positive changes, like problem solving, improving lives, connecting with others, strengthening a community—the list goes on.
This month, we are focusing on an organization that’s near and dear to my heart––Free Arts of Arizona. I am a current Free Arts volunteer and have been with them for almost a year now. Volunteering with Free Arts is truly one of the best things I have ever done, and I feel privileged every day to do so. I started volunteering because I was looking for something that I could do to really make a difference. Little did I know that volunteering does just as much for volunteers as it does for those they’re helping. Volunteering is a total life changer for all parties involved.
What is Free Arts?
Free Arts for Abused Children of Arizona is a nonprofit organization that brings the healing powers of the creative arts to abused, neglected, and homeless children by partnering with over 100 group homes, treatment centers, and shelters in Maricopa County. By recruiting creative volunteers to share their talents in the visual arts, music, theater, dance, creative writing, and other artistic projects, Free Arts helps children build self-esteem by unlocking their imaginations. Many of the children they serve have been removed from their families because of abuse or neglect and have been placed by the state into a group home. Still other children live with one parent in a domestic-violence shelter or with both parents in a homeless shelter. Some children live in residential treatment centers where they work to conquer painful issues of physical and sexual abuse, substance abuse, and violence. All of the children need the chance to express their hopes, fears, frustrations, and emotions. The creative arts give children a way to identify their emotions and express them through a positive medium. They give children the tools they need to improve self-esteem and social skills; most importantly, artistic expression gives children a voice. Do some research, talk with your family and friends, and maybe you will find that you, too, have a calling to help others and become a volunteer.
For more information on this worthwhile organization, visit freeartsaz.org.