Helping People, Changing Lives
6 health benefits of volunteering
Volunteers make an immeasurable difference in the lives of others, but did you know that volunteering can benefit your own health as well?
Researchers at Mayo Clinic have attempted to measure the benefits that volunteers receive including positive feeling referred to as helper’s high, increased trust in others and increased social interaction. From lowering stress to boosting self-confidence, this research has shown that volunteering offers many health benefits:
Volunteering decreases the risk of depression by increasing social interaction and helps build a support system based on common interests.
Volunteering gives a sense of purpose and teaches valuable skills. Volunteers perform critical roles in assisting families in our community. Sharing skills in all areas of our organization through hands on sorters at the store or from your home, administrative helpers, or the occasional deliverers of large goods, the work that volunteers provide is essential to everyday processes.
Volunteering helps people stay physically and mentally active. Volunteer activities get you moving and thinking at the same time. It’s like free body conditioning!
Volunteering may reduce stress levels. By savoring time spent in service to others, you may feel a sense of meaning and appreciation, both given and received, which can have stress-reducing effects.
Volunteering helps you meet others and develop new relationships. One of the best ways to make new friends and strengthen existing relationships is to participate in a shared activity together. Volunteering is a great way to meet new people who share common interests with you. Dedicating your time as a volunteer also helps you expand your network.
Volunteering may even help you live longer! An analysis of data from the Longitudinal Study of Aging found that individuals who volunteer have lower mortality rates than those who do not, even when controlling for age, gender and physical health. In addition, several studies have shown that volunteers with chronic or serious illness experience declines in pain intensity and depression when serving as peer volunteers for others also suffering from chronic pain.
Volunteers at Rich EnDeed come from a wide variety of backgrounds, but share the common desire to help others. They are men, women, retirees, teenagers, professionals, homemakers and students. Are you interested in becoming a volunteer? Join our team of volunteers, and make a difference in the lives of people right in your own backyard! Sign up to volunteer here!