Jonathan Sdao is an avid fisherman who enjoys fly fishing. He always finds time to enjoy the sport when he is in Colorado and Maine visiting friends and family. During his time at Colby College in Maine, he would go fly fishing with US Military Veterans as a part of the Project Healing Waters. For the last seventeen years, this non-profit organization has been serving wounded military service members, through therapeutic outdoor recreation.
The program’s founder, Ed Nicholson, spent thirty years in the Navy, embarking on a succession of assignments, including a tour in Viet Nam. In 2005, he found himself at the Walter Reed Medical Center in Bethesda, Maryland, where he got a close look at the soldiers who were wounded in Iraq, and later Afghanistan. Drawing on his love of fly fishing, he set out to make a difference in those who had been wounded serving the United States, and Project Healing Waters was born.
The purpose of the non-profit is to help service members and disabled veterans enjoy a better life. This is accomplished through the participation in fly fishing outings and education. Volunteers for the organization spend their time teaching classes and taking disabled veterans on fly fishing outings. They teach classes on fly fishing basics, how to cast, how to tie flies, and how to build rods, for both beginners and those with prior experience. The organization provides all the equipment free of charge, and never charges veterans to participate in the one day and multi-day outings.
Recommended to read: Four Basic Tips to Help You Get Started With Fly Fishing
Participants in the Program Healing Waters get a unique opportunity to socialize and build camaraderie with other veterans and volunteers. Jonathan Sdao used his love of fly fishing to give back to his community and enjoyed his time participating in Project Healing Waters while attending Colby College in Maine.
Recent college graduate, Johnathan Sdao, is passionate about helping others through community service. Along with participating in Project Healing Waters and mentoring disadvantaged youth, “I have been a leader for the Movember Foundation for the past three years and have raised thousands of dollars to support men’s health,” Jonathan Sdao explains. Helping others through community service has a dual benefit. Not only are you providing support for those in need, it provides important benefits for you as well.
Having an unselfish concern for the welfare of others can have a significant effect on your emotional well-being. When you help others, you are given the opportunity to improve your social interactions, along with improving your self-esteem and your competence. Helping others in need can also provide a distraction from your own problems.
Improving your emotional well-being isn’t the only benefit gained from helping others. Participating in community service projects can lead to an increase in social interaction, which can result in leading a more active life. Altruism has also been shown to reduce stress and its impact on the body. Helping others can also boost your immune system, which can help to decrease your chances of developing certain diseases.
Finding Inner Peace
Helping others through community service can give you a sense of pride and accomplishment. It gives you the opportunity to step out of your comfort zone and learn new skills. Broadening your knowledge base can provide you with the skills to help more people in the future, increasing your sense of fulfillment. Volunteering your time to help those in need can help you escape from the mundane activities of your daily life.
To get the most out of your community service, you need to make sure you find an opportunity that is a good fit and one that will push you out of your comfort zone. Jonathan Sdao loves helping others and is continually looking for new community service opportunities.