Our Impact 2: Building compassion through volunteering

Compassion is about relieving suffering in others

Our volunteers say they are motivated by putting their compassion for others into practice.

They want to connect to the humanity in other people and to a sense of purpose in their own lives.

Moreover, through volunteering, they discover that these attributes become even stronger – they are given the space that allows the human compassion in them to flourish.

Volunteers say:

‘I think that I am open hearted and open minded and the other volunteers seem the same…. The underlying kindness doesn’t change. I’m amazed about that especially in this work. It makes me want to be better and kinder’

‘I try to do good in my life, and here I can actually see that I am doing good’

‘Care is compassion, here we all feel for people… I want to die happy that I’ve done my bit for others’

‘This work is fulfilling…When I wake up I want to do it, I never had that feeling in any other job I’ve done’

‘All the people here care… I can’t really change the political situation but I can do a bit to help… If you have a bit of human compassion in you, then you will find a cause’’

‘I have found that the best approach for volunteering is expect nothing. I mean nothing! It is not what you want to get out of it, instead it is just give, give, give….I’ve found a passion for what I am meant to do’

Refugee Support is structured by a professional, resilience-based strategy, which is integrated alongside other relief operations. Through this model, the volunteers’ compassion bring positive outcomes.

One volunteer, with many years experience with different relief organisations, said, ‘Refugee Support gets it right. It delivers. If there is a transaction [between volunteers and the refugees who come to the Dignity Centre], it is one of mutual respect’

This is the second in our series of articles from Dr Jonathan Newman a social anthropologist and market researcher who conducted fieldwork in the Chisinau Dignity Centre in February 2023.

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