Monday, October 26, 2015
By Lisette Voytko, Task & Purpose
After deployment, members of U.S. armed forces return home with impressive skill sets, a desire to help others, but for some, a lack of purpose outside of the military. Veteran service organizations such as The Mission Continues and Team Rubicon provide community service opportunities to veterans, while digital publications like Task & Purpose provide them with a voice. And the purpose of community service is a pursuit veterans provide tremendous value to. According to a recent study, veterans volunteer 30% more community service hours than civilians. Not yet convinced? Here are 10 more ways veterans excel at community service:
1. We’re ingrained with an incredible work ethic.
Taking initiative and having a bias toward action is what we learned from Day 1 in the military. Assessing situations and making moves are what keeps the ball rolling, and prevents additional problems caused by inaction. And that means our community service has the maximum positive impact.
2. We’re dedicated to the task at hand.
Even though we left the service, we don’t stop work until the work is done. We trained for physical and mental endurance, which are required to get community service projects done on time and on budget.
3. We have a natural calling to serve a higher purpose.
We love helping people. Even though we’ve separated from the military, we still want to be a part of something bigger than ourselves, to be a part of the solution. Community service helps us continue to serve that higher purpose.
4. One word: precision.
We drilled for hundreds of hours to have maximum control over our physical bodies and mental capacities, to perform our best whether on sentry or in combat. We know the protocol for executing tasks, and we don’t cut corners in the interest of saving time or effort. In community service, we get it done right the first time around.
5. We know how to keep our commitments.
Community service helps us continue practicing the oath we took in the military. We didn’t leave our fallen comrades behind then, and we put others’ needs over our own now.
6. Paying it forward is everything.
When it comes to our families, we’re close-knit groups who weathered long deployments that kept us far apart. We understand the importance of love and support in difficult times. With community service, we want to provide aid and smiles to anyone who needs them.
7. Our professionalism is top notch.
In the military, keeping calm and maintaining our bearing means the difference between life or death in extreme circumstances. In community service, it means our ability to help isn’t hindered by our environment.
8. Respect. We have so much of it.
Everyone matters, especially the men and women who served our country. The shared experience of serving bonds us with all veterans, regardless of deployment or military occupational specialty.
9. Leadership, leadership, leadership.
Leading with trust and integrity yields amazing results. Veterans know these two qualities empower a team and create the highest potential for success.
10. Honor above all.
As veterans, we still want to provide courage, faith, and hope to those who need it most. That’s why we served in the armed forces, and why we serve our communities today. Our goal is that the foundation on which the United States was built remains strong for the next 50 years and beyond.