By Kenneth Cole
In honor of National Volunteer Week, I wanted to share some personal thoughts and perspectives from being “in my shoes.” For over 40 years, I have sought to engage with diverse communities who have interacted with my varied endeavors, and I have had the fortune of meeting some extraordinary people. In 2008, I had the privilege of interviewing 86 individuals for my book, AWEARNESS – Inspiring Stories About How to Make a Difference. Through interacting with these often uncelebrated and unsung heroes doing their part to improve the lives of individuals, communities, and our planet, I noticed there were some common lessons to be learned:
Regardless of how much time anyone had committed to serve, and regardless of the venture, the only regrets occasionally expressed were that they wished they had committed even more of themselves and had begun the journey even earlier. Also, in most cases, the person providing the service was often troubled, even conflicted, with the realization that due to the fulfillment they received from the experience, they may have been an even bigger beneficiary than those they were helping.
This week, I encourage you all to get involved, be it in a big or small way. Whatever you do—should you choose to join a movement or start your own, help your neighbor two doors away or your world neighbor two continents away—you won’t likely regret it.
Listed below are the charities my associates are volunteering with this week. Here’s hoping this small post inspires you to do your part, and remember, you can change your outfit, you can outfit change, or both.
Some of the organizations our KCP associates are volunteering with in the New York area include:
For those of you outside of New York, Volunteer Match is a resource to find volunteer opportunities nationwide: http://www.volunteermatch.org