Community service is performed by someone or a group of people for the benefit of the public or its institutions. Performing community service is not the same as volunteering, since it is not always performed on a voluntary basis. It may be performed for a variety of reasons: Career requirement, Community Social Responsibility, fulfillment of an academic program, requirement by a donor etc.
Community service is a great, effective way to help your community. There are all sorts of opportunities and ways to serve. Serving and giving your time towards community service is a commendable endeavor. Sometimes it is not enough to simply serve. The one serving needs to be able to take something away from the experience and be able to use any new found knowledge or interpersonal discoveries to improve their future servitude and the people around them. However, in order to gain the most out of community service, there should be an element of learning balanced with the serving aspect. By learning and serving all at the same time, one can improve their community and surroundings while learning life lessons and building character in ways that will help them to further impact the world in the future. How can we expect our children to know and experience the joy of giving unless we teach them that the greater pleasure in life lies in the art of giving rather than receiving.
I have been doing community services as an individual and also with organizations, church groups and other initiatives. When I founded the Makinika Afrika International Initiative in 2011, I was then a third year student at Moi University Eldoret-Kenya and I was feeling empty and inside me was an urge to touch and impact a life but did not know where to start. I went to Huruma grounds which is at the Eldoret Kitale road and it is there where I found a lot of young boys playing and others sniffing glue. I went to talk to them and we had a good time, it was very fulfilling and it’s at that place that I received a divine life assignment and founded this initiative. My slogan thereafter has always been “compassion is my passion, in service to mankind.”
Community Service-Learning is about leadership development as well as traditional information and skill acquisition. So therefore, the combination of people doing service and learning at the same time, teaches them how to be effective and, more importantly, how to be effective about what is important to them. It improves their overall experience and the amount of application opportunities they will gain from it. By adding service to learning, and balancing the two, community service can become more than just the simple act of serving. It takes small steps to create big change and this is what service-learning hopes to achieve. By being a classroom, a hands-on learning experience, and an opportunity to change the community, people are able to not only serve, but impact themselves as well.
Community service also allows those participating to reflect on the difference they are making in society. Some participants of a community service project may find themselves gaining a greater understanding of their roles in the community, as well as the impact of their contributions towards those in need of service. Because community service outlets vary, those who serve are exposed to many different kinds of people, environments, and situations.
With each new community service project, some participants may gain insightful experience in a variety of areas. Participants may also internalize the information that they found personally insightful for future use. While simply performing community service is valuable to the recipients, those serving often find it beneficial to pause and reflect on how they are changing society for the better. Schools often take students on community service projects in order for them to gain a greater understanding of how their individual actions affect the well being of the public. Participants may find that the giving of themselves to the public good may result in a more solidified view of self and purpose.
Those involved in community service learning may also find that after serving the community for an extended period of time, they have an advantage in real-world experience. Eventually, the skills and knowledge obtained while working with the community may be applied in future areas of work. Community service may also increase a participant’s social connectivity. Because most community service opportunities allow others to interact and work with other individuals, this service may help volunteers network and connect with others towards a common goal.
People gain the most from their community service projects when they volunteer their time to help people that they have never interacted with before. This direct contact allows people to see life from a different perspective and reevaluate their opinions of others. Many young people who get involved in community service come out with a more well-rounded worldview.
Another benefit in participating in community service is a greater understanding and appreciation for diversity. Appreciating other cultures and breaking down stereotypes is important to becoming a responsible citizen and better person. By participating in a community service project where interaction is required, personal relationships can begin to grow. These personal relationships allow people to have informal and consistent interactions that through time will often lead to a breakdown of negative stereotypes surrounding one or both people. These relationships can also lead to gaining more opinions and viewpoints surrounding various topics that help the participants to grow in diversity.
Learning to understand the needs and motivations of others, especially those who live different lives from our own, is an important part of living a productive life. This leads to a view of humanity that can help a person stay free of biased opinions of others and can lead to a more diverse and ultimately more productive and thought provoking life.
If you want to lift yourself up, lift up someone else. The good we do unto others will always come back in bigger measures.
No act of kindness, no matter how small, is ever wasted. That heart you touch no matter how simple the act is has a very great impact even to the society.
Everyone can be great because anyone can serve. You don’t have to have a College degree to serve. You don’t even have to make your subject and your verb agree to serve… You only need a heart full of grace. A soul generated by love. Godliness gives you the love, the kindness, the compassionate heart to serve others. It is one of the most beautiful compensations of this life that no man can sincerely try to help another without helping himself.
In my twitter handle @Ambstevembugua ,one of my daily topic is about compassion as that’s my passion. Seek to do good, and you will find that happiness will run after you. — James Freeman Clarke

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About the Author


Amb. Steve Mbugus is an enthusiastic Ambassador of Safety and wellness with in-depth training, safety advisory and Workplace Safety Behavior Change Coaching experience. He is the am the Founder and Executive Director of Makinika Afrika Int’l , a Health and Safety Training Firm in Kenya  and Group CEO  Nairobi Safety Shop Limited, the largest Security, Safety and Health Store in the East and Central Africa and Managing Director, Stewa Safaris Kenya Limited a Premier  Tours and  Travels Company in Kenya.

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