Are you driven by the passion for helping children, adults, families, and communities dealing with poverty, distress, and marginalization? Or perhaps, you are a kind and compassionate listener who gives valuable advice to people dealing with trauma and grief?
We choose our career paths and life callings by transforming our passions into rewarding jobs that help us make a difference. Millions of professionals worldwide are driven by desires to pile wealth, real estate, automotive collections, and indulge in great pleasures. But communities thrive by millions of humanitarians serving populations across the planet with selfless devotion to human service and wellbeing.
If you wish to give back to your community and contribute to social justice, we’ve lined up some promising career paths. Here, take a look.
Professionals who opt for social work serve distressed and underserved populations, using their problem-solving skills to eliminate challenges and improve life quality. They address a broad range of issues revolving around poverty, child abuse and neglect, domestic violence, ethnic discrimination, education access, and more.
Social workers combine humanitarian relief approaches with sociological principles to understand why social issues plague certain populations within societies. Social work is a broad field that opens various paths to serve communities in several capacities or research to inform policymakers. Social workers pursue doctoral programs to lead research initiatives investigating the causes of social injustices and proposing actionable recommendations.
Social workers serve communities as licensed caseworkers and therapists, fighting social injustice by helping individuals and families directly. Aspirants often get confused over the social worker vs therapist debate while choosing a career path to answer their humanitarian calling. Social workers and therapists serving distressed communities have different licensure and training requirements.
Caseworkers help people from distressed backgrounds and struggles, like substance abuse, domestic violence, criminal histories, child abuse, etc. And therapists deal with individuals combatting mental health issues and addiction disorders to lead them to recovery.
We advise broadening your horizons during your undergraduate program and gaining real-world exposure to choose your career path wisely. Reflecting on your core leadership skills, humanitarian strengths, and academic interests will help you pick a profession you truly love.
Mental Health Professionals
Mental health experts study the human brain and mind to unravel the mysteries of illnesses and concerns that impair cognitive functioning. Some experts pursue psychiatry and psychology to combine health interventions with therapies in treating complex mental disorders. In contrast, others embrace counseling and therapy to treat patients by altering unhealthy behaviors and helping them regain cognitive strength.
The field of psychology is brimming with various approaches and paradigms, including biological, cognitive, behavioral, and psychodynamic. It’s a field that demands continual learning to understand the evolving nature of mental illnesses and help patients with emerging technological tools. Mental health professionals help people fight off mental disorders and unfair social stigmas to enjoy superior life quality.
They aid people with addictions, social anxiety, depression, and complex schizophrenia-like disorders that most communities don’t understand. Mental health professionals contribute to awareness around emotional and mental concerns to fight social stigmas and prejudice and help people in distress.
Human Rights Attorneys
Does injustice and unfairness of the criminal justice system enflame and enrage you? Do you want to protect victims of domestic violence, illegal activities, and abuse with legal protection and representation? Or perhaps, you want to fight racial/ethnic discrimination and demand equal rights for underserved communities through legal mechanisms?
Suppose you dwell on the questions mentioned above with passion and awe. In that case, human rights law is the perfect calling for your humanitarian spirit. Human rights lawyers work pro-bono and serve clients who cannot find fair and free legal representation. They fight criminal and social injustices by allowing minority and vulnerable victims to present their cases in the courtroom.
Human rights lawyers work with non-profit and humanitarian organizations, while some open private practices to build a clientele and community.
Doctors, nurses, physicians, and other healthcare providers are often likened to angels for saving precious lives and nurturing people to health. Healthcare is a field that allows professionals with humanitarian aspirations to save patients fighting life-and-death emergencies. You can explore many career paths, such as physicians, surgery, nursing, psychiatry, physical therapy, and more.
However, it’s pertinent to note that modern-day healthcare systems are geared towards profitability instead of public welfare. Healthcare providers who serve their communities must explore avenues that support community service. For instance, doctors, nurses, and medics can help organizations operating worldwide in distress and conflict-riddled war zones. Doctors Without Borders, Red Cross, World Health Organization, and other United Nations-affiliated relief bodies are a few examples worth exploring.
Healthcare providers treat and serve small communities and individual patients, while public health professionals focus on large populations. They investigate disease causation and prevention, design and test vaccines, and guide policymakers on public health interventions. Public health professionals serve communities by promoting health equity and equality and elevating social wellbeing.
Public health opens various career paths, such as clinical research, epidemiology, community health work, nutrition, and policymaking. These professionals eradicate diseases and propose meaningful policies to promote healthier and longer lifespans.
The desire to serve humankind is a noble and commendable drive. Still, it’s crucial to find your professional calling to make a difference. We advise exploring career paths that align with your academic interests and professional qualities. Staying true to one’s strengths and leadership skills is crucial to using one’s potential to make powerful and meaningful impacts.