By Sarah Harvey, Managing Editor
In your hands you are holding all the information you need to become a community superhero.
I don’t know a lot about superheroes, so to help prepare for this issue I consulted some experts: my niece and nephews, ages six, eight, and nine. I asked them about the qualities a person needed to have to be considered a superhero. The general consensus was that superheroes have exceptional abilities and powers, and/or they save people.
Are patience, kindness, and a desire to help one’s fellow humans exceptional qualities? More and more, I think there’s an argument to be made that they are. Volunteering is an excellent way to cultivate these superhero qualities.
It might sound slightly hyperbolic for me to say the Denver VOICE volunteers are lifesavers, but I’ve heard vendors say that the VOICE saved their lives, and our program wouldn’t exist without the amazing folks who volunteer for us every month. In fact, this month 20 different people volunteered to help the VOICE with everything from newspaper distribution to event planning.
Superheroes help people, and you’ll find information on all sorts of ways to help people in this issue. Our annual volunteering guide, compiled by Metro Volunteers, starts after page 6. And on page 6, you’ll find a recycling guide that highlights six organizations making a positive impact in Denver. As you’re cleaning out your closets this spring, you can use this guide to help you figure out how to recycle everything from tennis balls to vegetable oil. I think saving the planet definitely makes you a superhero (speaking of saving the planet, check our events page this month for some suggestions on how to celebrate Earth Day).
National Volunteer Week is April 23-29—the perfect excuse to start volunteering, if you needed one. Not only will you be helping your community, you’ll be helping yourself too. The benefits of volunteering range from building confidence to learning new skills and making new friends. Who knows, the life you save may be your own. ■