Volunteering is the lifeblood of any community. It is because of volunteers that communities are able to run organizations, social services, conferences, playgroups, drop-in centers, feed the hungry, shelter the homeless, set up blood banks, and the list goes on.
Paid employees only make up a small part of the social services network; without volunteers such endeavors would come to a standstill.
As Muslims, our role isn't just to make our salat and fast and pay zakat. We are encouraged to take on a broader role by working to improve the communities we live in. It is by translating our love of Allah into good actions that we strengthen our imaan. Islam is a faith of action and we need to demonstrate our faith by working to make the world a better place.
In Islam there is a strong ethic of volunteerism. This does not simply extend to running study circles or fundraising for the masjid. As Muslims, we see our role as world citizens. The idea of working for a better society or community shouldn't be limited to the Muslim community but should extend to the broader non-Muslim community as well.
Volunteering is a beneficial and productive form of sadaqa, or helping give to those in need. Not only are you benefitting others, you are earning reward, and – a fact that is often overlooked – learning how to become more productive in your everyday life.