Newspaper article The Northern Star (Lismore, Australia)

Happy to Help; Northern Rivers' People Are Happier and Willing to Volunteer

Newspaper article The Northern Star (Lismore, Australia)

Happy to Help; Northern Rivers' People Are Happier and Willing to Volunteer

Article excerpt

Byline: Andy Parks andy.parks@northernstar.com.au

PEOPLE in the Northern Rivers are generally a happy lot who feel connected to their community, despite lower than average income levels.

That's the thrust of the findings in a new Community Wellbeing Survey that tries to quantify the level of satisfaction and participation experienced by people living in the region.

One of the findings is that 41% of people volunteer with a local group, which is above the national average of 36%.

It also found that 44% of respondents feel valued by society and 90% of people feel they can get help from family and friends if needed.

Northern Rivers Social Development Council CEO Tony Davies said participation in community groups was "the lifeblood of the community".

"It creates a sense of community and contributes to wellbeing. There is quite a body of research about the factors that create resilience in the community, and although we have some areas out west where household incomes are very low by state standards, people are not doing as badly as otherwise might be expected," he said. …

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