“VOLUNTEERS”…..the new wealthy!

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“VOLUNTEERS”…..the new wealthy!


It took me a little over a century to get it…..

I use to say “when I become wealthy (noticed I said “when”) I’m going to give back to my community and people who are poor”….just that simple and straight forward. I started saying this as early as approximately 10 years old, and while I haven’t come close to becoming wealthy it’s taking me a long time to figure out that “Giving Back” is being “Wealthy”.  When you ask most people “What would you do with the money after winning the lottery”? Many would say AFTER taking care of family and self they would give money to charity, which overall I think is GREAT however 99.9% of us will never win the lottery….oh well there goes the charity.

Earlier in my life I use to volunteer a great deal but I admit it was typically at the direction of someone else (e.g. parents, job etc), the act of volunteering was not something I gave much “Mental Priority” too. I always felt at the time that I could be doing something else….and possibly if I became “Wealthy” I can just give this clothing shelter a check. I’m being totally honest. This post is NOT about someone who’s just the BEST person on earth or the 2nd coming to Mother Theresa, NO it’s the self-realization that the only thing that matters in life is NOT always YOU. Yes, I have had the proverbial “Epiphany” later in my life and maybe it’s a different “Mid-Life Crisis” I’m having but the reality is that nothing makes me more happy than seeing someone I have helped succeed….and it did not take money. Don’t get me wrong I do not shun the “Warren Buffets”/”Bill Gates” of the world who pursue philanthropy with such vigor, I no longer give or accept the excuse that you have to be “Wealthy” in order to give back. “TIME”, in my humble opinion is the new currency when it comes to giving back to those less fortunate.  There has been numerous times where I have been thanked more for giving my time whether it’s cleaning dishes or preparing a meal, placing money in a jar quite frankly was not close to being satisfying.  I don’t have that many regrets in my life however I do sometimes wish I had this perspective earlier….who knows I may have become a “Contender” when it comes to “Servant Leadership”!

“VOLUNTEERS” in my eyes are the true “Wealthy” both in spirit and wallet. What’s so fascinating is the people met through volunteering have been the most unassuming, humble people I have ever met….and the wealthiest. There’s this one guy I swear you would think he should be on the other side of the counter accepting food, just as modest as they come and I find out later he was a CEO for a major pharma company.  The old saying “just looking at someone does not signify who they are”. I love volunteering and I deeply wish I could have uncovered this passion long ago but I guess some things come with time and “TIMING”.

This is not to be a passage of guilt and to persuade you to become a “Volunteer”….my message is just to confirm that “VOLUNTEERS” can create “WEALTH”!!


“VOLUNTEERS”…..the new wealthy!




Andre’ Harrell

AH2 & Beyond Consulting  



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