Why Does It Matter
Volunteering and philanthropic giving can indicate strong ownership and pride in a community, and help spur greater resident involvement in all areas of civic life.
Both activities are not only good for the vitality of a community, but have individual benefits for the person involved. National studies have linked volunteering with strong employment outcomes; one study found that people who volunteer are 27% more likely to land a job after being out of work than those who don't. Additionally, volunteering and giving can improve mental health, providing a sense of purpose and meaning for those who participate.
Unfortunately, data is showing that the nation's younger generations are volunteering less than before, which could lead to less community engagement between residents in the future. If this trend continues, our community and nonprofits may suffer. Millenials and Generation Z are more likely to support causes rather than organizations, so it will be important to consider new ways to engage younger volunteers through advocacy and activism.