Mental Health Tips of the Month

Utilizing Summer to the Fullest

Summer 2015

Summer is here! While the summer may be the time to relax by the pool, go on a summer vacation, or make some extra money for many people, others may feel isolated or feel like they need something to do and want to try something new. What can we do to fill that void over the summer? One idea to consider is volunteering in the community.

Volunteering at a local organization can be a great opportunity to help you meet new friends, make connections with community leaders, discover Houston, gain new experience and skills, and most importantly, improve your physical and mental health. Benefits of volunteering include: building self-esteem and self-confidence; meeting new people; feeling needed and valued; and making a difference in someone's life.

If you are thinking about volunteering, consider the following:

  • What do you value and what causes are important to you?
  • Do you prefer to work alone or as part of a team?
  • How much time/responsibility are you willing to commit?
  • What skills can you bring to a volunteer job?
  • Would my friends or family like to be involved?

The next step? There many groups on the University of Houston campus that are involved in community service and welcome new members including the Metropolitan Volunteer Program (MVP). For information about volunteer opportunities with MVP at the University of Houston, please go to

Call a local volunteer agency and meet to discuss your options. Remember, you do not have to commit if it does not appear to be a good fit for you. For information about volunteer opportunities in Houston please go to