After the pie, the stolen moments of football-watching, and the one-hour food coma, many Americans on Thursday will feel truly thankful. Some may even feel an urge, located somewhere between their turkey-bloated stomach and cider-smacking lips, to give back.
Twenty-seven percent of Americans volunteer at some point during the year, according to Volunteering in America, for an average of 129 hours each. But some people in this country give back most of their waking hours all year-round. The jobs and careers community, Glassdoor, has compiled a list of the top 10 jobs that have as a daily perk that tingly I-helped-somebody feeling.
10. Special Education Teacher
If you are detailed and patient, able to motivate students, understanding of special needs, and accepting of differences in others, this career path may provide you with a lifetime of fulfillment by educating children facing a wide variety of challenges both in and out of the classroom.
9. Senior Life Enrichment Coordinator
Enjoy working with adults in their golden years? Are you creative, understanding and full of life yourself? Could you spend each day putting smiles on the faces of senior citizens? Then this might be the job for you. This is a job that helps plan and lead fun activities and trips for seniors living in assisted living centers, while also tending to each individual's needs.
This in-demand career path offers you a diverse scope of opportunities to "feel good," as you'll have the chance to help others day in and day out. Some of the many possibilities include mending wounds, administering medication, and just chatting with sick patients who may feel lonely or scared in a hospital.
Dogs aren't called "man's best friend" for nothing, and no one wants to lose their best friend. When dogs, cats, horses, hamsters or any animal is sick or injured, families turn to vets to save the lives of their four-legged family members during any hour of the day, any day of the week.
6. Shelter Chef
If you're a culinary genius skilled in whipping up a delicious meal with whatever's in the pantry, this may be the job for you. You'll be responsible for planning and cooking up to three meals a day for potentially hundreds of people in need. A big heart and a knack for being resourceful are essential.
5. Adoption Case Manager
When children smile, do you smile? If so, this job may bring you a big smile. With thousands of children across America in need of a permanent home, you'll have the opportunity to help some of them, by finding loving homes and families for them that they can be a part of forever.
4. Military Occupational Therapist
If patriotism runs deep in you, this career path directly benefits the brave men and women fighting for our freedom. When a military member suffers an injury, you'll be responsible for planning and administering care, and helping them cope with disability to regain their independence and return to work.
3. Crisis Counselor
Do you have strength, a commitment to others and are you prepared to face tough situations every day? If so, you'll be lending critical support to those in the midst of devastating situations, from unexpected deaths to natural disasters. What you'll provide to others, however, may give you a tremendous sense of accomplishment and purpose.
2. Financial Educator
As the nation continues to struggle with an economic meltdown, families are in search of "best practices" on how to manage money, from how to save for college to how to avoid foreclosure. You don't have to be Suze Orman, but you can end each day knowing you've provided comfort to others.
1. Emergency Responder (Police Officer, Firefighter, EMT)
Do you really want to touch lives every day? If giving back is your passion, a career as a police officer, firefighter or EMT will be more than just a job. You'll literally be saving lives, protecting others and providing care in a way that will last a lifetime.
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