As of the first of January there were 8,784 hours in the New Year to be put to any purpose you might wish. As a volunteer, it’s likely that you never stopped to consider the economic value of the time you provide to your favorite charitable organization. Given how valuable your time is, take a well-deserved bow!
While it is difficult to put a dollar value on a volunteer’s time, Independent Sector has done just that. According to their website, Independent Sector's mission is to “advocate for public policies that protect and strengthen the ability of individuals to support nonprofits and foundations." All that is to say, Independent Sector identifies the value of Virginia’s volunteers as $24.90 per hour of work. So, how have you spent your volunteer hours? This is a pivotal question posed in the article "Caregivers: Spend Your Time Wisely This Year" from the January 15th issue of US News & World Report. Now that you are aware of your value, how will you spend your time for the rest of the year?
You have about a half a million minutes left, so think of yourself as the sole heir to a half-million dollars. When you look at it like that, each dollar representing a minute will disappear quickly unless you watch your inheritance and control how you spend it. By getting roped into spending your time (money) on things that aren't beneficial, you're left with less time to do what you want.
Here’s another question: Are you a caregiver for an elderly family member? Do the responsibilities of that care mean that you don't have any time for yourself? Many times, primary caregivers feel constrained by too little time (and money) to take better care of themselves. Knowing how much your care is worth, I hope you will recognize that you must take the time you need to safeguard your own health and happiness.
Leverage your time and energy with periodic breaks from your duties and take advantage of adult-day services, in-home care, or residential care. An experienced elder law attorney can sort out many of the issues that face caregivers. He or she will have information about adult-day services, caregiver support groups, in-home care, assisted living, and skilled-nursing care.
Take it one step at a time and follow the advice of your elder law attorney. Don't be afraid to ask for help at 757-259-0707.
Reference: US News & World Report (January 15, 2016) "Caregivers: Spend Your Time Wisely This Year"