with Emily Fox, VCU class of 2013
Over the last few months I have been volunteering some of my time to help around at VisArts. Like all new experiences, volunteering here has taught me a few things about The Visual Arts Center of Richmond and volunteering.
Here are five things you might get out of volunteering at VisArts:
1. Meet new people
At school or at work you’re generally surrounded by people like you, who have similar interests and similar motivators. Volunteering at the Visual Arts Center of Richmond you get a chance to meet a diverse group of people who have had different experiences than you. Volunteering here has given me the chance to get to know people who I would not normally cross paths with. At Craft +Design Show I worked with a woman who was much older than I and had some stories to tell. It was refreshing to talk to her and get a different perspective on daily observations. Volunteering gave me the opportunity to learn something new from her and the other volunteers who, although being very different from each other, have all been driven to creativity and the want to help others be creative.
2. Help the Community
Volunteering at VisArts is a great reminder that it is a non-profit and a lot of things cannot be done without the help of volunteers. For the most part all the work that I have done at VisArts has been in the background, in the office, but even though I am not directly working with the children in the outreach programs, I can see how my work is making a difference. It might just be office work but I can see how even a volunteer at VisArts becomes a part of the team working toward the end goal of giving children a safe place to express themselves.
3. Get to know VisArts
Volunteering at VisArts has given me a chance to really get to know the place and the people here and learn more about the good work they do for others in our community. While volunteering at the Craft + Design Show, I was able to walk through the exhibits of artists from around the country and from right here in Richmond. I was able to see some of the amazing work from the VisArts’ instructors; a sampling of what they teach in their classes, and I was really inspired by their work. Getting a taste of VisArts by volunteering at an event showed me what can be created here and has inspired me to take a class.
4. Stay Busy
Every now and then I have some free time to spare, when relaxing I often feel that I could probably be doing something better with this free time. Volunteering at VisArts is a great way for me to feel productive when I have some down time. It keeps me busy but without all the stress that can come from school or work. It gives me a chance to think about something else other than school and a time to get to know new people; it’s a chance for me to feel productive where I know the help is needed.
5. Gain Experience
As a soon-to-be college graduate, I am often told that having ‘previous experience’ will really help out when entering the job market. Volunteering with VisArts to work on event flyers, the website and social media has given me the experience I need when applying to jobs in the future.
I recommend volunteering at VisArts to anyone wanting a fun, stress-free way to support your community and the arts while enjoying the company of a diverse group of people in a vibrant environment.
Classes that Landed on Emily’s Bucket List