Got involved into a conversation which ultimately ended in a very subtle job offer. The job itself is BEYOND my imagination of what a job should be. Let’s just say it’s for a ‘non-profit organization’.
That’s not what I am about to question.
The chat went on and on and finally numbers came up and I was close to having a heart attack. It was rather huge. No, wait, it was huge.
As I drove home, thoughts came popping inside my head like crazy. I was suddenly in an urgent need of having a new definition for the concept of ‘volunteering’. When I was in school, teachers taught me that ‘volunteering’ is something you do without getting paid. If you get some money, then it’s your luck. If you don’t, well… it is volunteer work. I’ve never heard of leading a fabulous lifestyle BY doing volunteer work. When your life is already fabulous (read: similar to Angelina Jolie’s or Madonna’s), then it’s understandable for you to go on a real volunteer work, even donate loads of cash to whatever cause wherever it is. That’s my understanding of ‘volunteering’.
But I was wrong. Totally wrong, if I may say.
I don’t know why so-called ‘volunteer workers’ get paid so much. Not envying them, nor saying that they’re wrong, but I couldn’t help but get a bit worried. It’s fine if the volunteer worker does whatever s/he does out of idealism and true calling, but what some people just do it for the money? Or are ‘true callings’ is really from the bank nowadays? I mean, come on. To somebody who has to work almost 20 hours a day, it just seems so convenient to start working at 07.30 a.m. and finish up at 04.00 p.m. To somebody who has to always stand by on weekends, working with lazy ass crews and dealing with spoiled celebs, having every weekend off is quite a luxury. Not to mention the pay and fringes. Man. If I weren’t thinking about actually ‘having to like’ what I do, I’d snatch the offer there and then.
My very simple mind could not be satisfied. Why do volunteer workers nowadays have higher salary standards than ‘regular’ workers?
Or is the definition of ‘volunteer work’ has shifted? If so, why, when and how? And if it is ‘non-profit’, how the hell do these organization get their money? I mean, wouldn’t it be better to donate the huge-ass cash straight to the needy rather than distributing the money to people who work in a nice air-conditioned office everyday first, before donating them? It just doesn’t add up to me. Yes they have rich people donating the money to the organization, but then… shouldn’t the logic be as raw as: ‘if you’re still eating out of someone’s mercy, shouldn’t you be employing any form of help?’ I don’t know, maybe it’s stupid, but the concept of getting your salary from philantrophists’ donations when you don’t really need to be in the receiving end (read: there are lots of people who need the money more than you do and you can find other jobs to avoid cutting the donations intended for them) is rather… absurd. Is it? Or isn’t it?
And another thing.
I heard the job would require some traveling to remote parts of the country and do helpful stuff to the people. I’m just wondering… why aren’t we helping people nearest to us first before going off into some island? Without disregarding people in remote locations of this country, I’d say we start from our own city. Isn’t this logical? Or not?
I’m really blind about these sort of things, so if my questions and ponders sound novice and somewhat stupid, I don’t care. But really, I want to know. Because to me, ‘working’ is always about money. Screw idealism, because WORKING equals earning money.
‘Volunteer work’, however, is about dedication to the ones in need and self-satisfaction.
Money doesn’t have anything to do with it, and if it does now…
I still prefer to go commercial. At least it’s guilt-free.