Newark Parks Foundation values health and community. Therefore, relationships, exercise, and sleep FIRST, then volunteer what time you are able—no apology necessary. All of us have careers, kids, household chores, and hobbies, and so our availability will ebb and flow and at varying times throughout the year: if you’re feeling stress, not joy, scale back your volunteer efforts.
How you make time for volunteering is an individual and family decision, but feel free to read our volunteering tips for ideas. When all else fails, there’s always coffee or chocolate.
Ask for Help
If you have something in your personal life that’s keeping you up at night and that requires some extra hands (or ears), reach out to your fellow Board members/volunteers for support. That’s what community is for! If in a given month you don’t have time for formal outreach, remember that outreach includes talking with friends and family about our Foundation’s mission—and is often the best form of outreach.
City governments are supposed to meet the needs of its citizens, but it’s up to us to communicate our needs. If you have any doubt, just ask yourself why the park amenities and opens spaces you desire don’t exist. Families are hard-pressed for time, especially those with little ones. It’s those families who regret not having these capital projects years into the future when their kids are teens. We hear from those parents often: “My kids would have loved something like that.” The answer to this dilemma is to spread the load—to recruit more families to get involved and to accept—without judgement—what time volunteers do have to contribute.