Magazine article Parks & Recreation

The Spirit of Volunteerism in Parks and Recreation

Magazine article Parks & Recreation

The Spirit of Volunteerism in Parks and Recreation

Article excerpt

What do we know about volunteerism in the United States? It is estimated that more than 109 million adults' aged 18 and over volunteered for some activity in 1998. The average person volunteers 3.5 hours per week for a combined net total of 19.9 billion hours! The volunteer workforce represents the equivalent of over nine million full-time employees, with a worth of $225 billion! Women volunteer more than men (62% vs. 49%). A total of 86 percent of individuals who volunteer do so because they felt compassion for those in need.

Okay, now that we've digested a host of statistics, here's one observation that might be even more telling that all of these -- 90% of individuals volunteer when asked.

That's right, a simple request is often the only action you need to get people involved.

The number of volunteers who involve parks or recreation-based activities is staggering to even comprehend. Where would park and recreation agencies be without volunteers? Even the simplest Saturday morning soccer matches would be difficult to conduct without the help of volunteers. Let one person forget the orange slices, fruit drinks, and snacks and you will see the roots of the words "anarchy" and "chaos" in action. …

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