Press Releases / Volunteer Preferences Change Over Time, SignUpGenius Survey Shows

Volunteer Preferences Change Over Time, SignUpGenius Survey Shows

National Volunteer Week volunteering trends data stats statistics information trends CHARLOTTE, N.C. — As people progress through life, the types of groups they prefer to volunteer with and the time they spend volunteering shift, according to the results of a SignUpGenius user survey conducted for National Volunteer Week (April 15-21).

The survey also revealed that people primarily volunteer “to impact my community in positive ways,” with 65 percent of respondents selecting that as their main motivator. Only 6.1 percent chose “because someone asked me to volunteer.”

“Every day we see inspiring stories that show the difference organized groups of volunteers make,” said SignUpGenius COO and CMO Angel Rutledge. “We focus on giving people more time to spend in their communities by making it easy to sign up for volunteer opportunities and participate in events benefitting their favorite groups.”

Key survey findings include:

  • The reasons people volunteer change over time. More than 30 percent of participants ages 65 and older and about 23 percent of those ages 18 to 24 selected “I want to meet new people and build relationships” as their primary reason for volunteering, compared to an average of about 9 percent for other age groups.
  • People volunteer most with nonprofits, community groups and schools — and those preferences also change over time. About 66 percent of respondents ages 25 to 44 volunteer with schools, compared to only about 20 percent of participants ages 65 and over. More than 50 percent of respondents ages 55 and older reported volunteering with churches, while millennials were less likely than average to volunteer with churches.
  • About 35 percent of respondents are “power volunteers,” contributing 10 or more hours a month to various organizations. People ages 65 and older are most likely to be power volunteers, with 49 percent volunteering more than 10 hours a month.
  • People overwhelmingly prefer — 77 percent — to give time to a favorite cause than money. However, as people grow older (up until retirement age), they become more likely to say they prefer to donate money rather than volunteer their time.
  • People primarily like to organize volunteers online because it helps them communicate more easily, with 61 percent of respondents citing that as the biggest benefit. This trend was consistent across all demographics. Saving time was the second-most popular response at 24.2 percent.
SignUpGenius, the leading online sign up service for volunteer and event management, helps up to 14 million people each month sign up to support world-changing groups and causes. Volunteerism is also an important part of the company’s culture. The SignUpGenius team volunteers together throughout the year, serving the company’s giving partners and other groups.

Survey results were tallied based on the responses of 326 SignUpGenius users. Full results, including a demographic breakdown, can be found here

About SignUpGenius
SignUpGenius simplifies the process of coordinating events and people by providing online sign ups for nonprofits, schools, sports, churches, families, colleges, businesses and organizations. By enabling up to 14 million unique visitors per month to sign up for tasks online, SignUpGenius has done away with the need for paper sign ups, "reply-all" emails and phone trees.
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