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Giving and Volunteering
in the United States: Part 1
 
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Volunteers of America

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  In 2002, about 59 million persons age 16 and over volunteered their time to an organization (27.6% of the civilian noninstitutional population). Among the age groups, those 35-44 years old were most likely to volunteer, at 34.4 percent of their population. Volunteer rates were second lowest among persons age 65 years and over (22.7 percent), yet those who did volunteer among this age group devoted the most time—a median of 96 hours. Volunteers as a whole spent a median of 52 hours doing volunteer activities during the period. It is worth noting that volunteer rates were higher among women (31.1%) than men (23.8%); among college graduates (43.6) than high school dropouts (10.1); among married persons (32.7%) than singles (21.2%); and, among part-time workers (35.5%) than either full-time workers (28.5%), unemployed persons (25.3) or those not in the labor force (23.7).  
  Volunteers were most likely to provide their services through one or two organizations—69.1 percent and 19.3 percent, respectively.
The main type of organization for the majority of volunteers was either Religious (33.9%) or Educational/Youth-Service related (27.2%). Older volunteers were more likely to volunteer their time to religious organizations than younger. For example, 45.2 percent of those 65 and over performed volunteer acitivities mainly for or through a religious organization, compared with 28.6 percent of those 25 to 34.
 
  If you're interested in learning more about volunteerism in the United States, or participating in a volunteer network, start with one the following links:
U.S. Freedom Corp | VolunteerMatch
 
     
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Volunteer Work in the U.S.
Sources: US Census Bureau, Current Population Survey, September 2002;
United States Department of Labor: Volunteering in the United States (PDF)

2000 ADULT POPULATION DOING VOLUNTEER WORK
BY TYPE OF ACTIVITY
"Other" volunteer activities include but are not exclusive to:
Environmental or animal care; Public safety; and, Not determined
2000 ADULT POPULATION DOING VOLUNTEER WORK
BY AGE GROUP
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