Who Are You: A Snapshot of Volunteering in America

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United We Serve

If you took a snapshot of Americans' volunteer service, what would it look like? What work would attract the most volunteers? Will Boomers be able to teach Millennials a thing or two about helping others? And should you look north, south, east, or west to find the state that spends the most doing it?

The Corporation for National and Community Service (CNCS) took a look at data that answers these questions and many others, and we compiled the answers in our Volunteering In America 2011 report. The full report can be found at the Volunteering In America website, but we pulled some interesting tidbits from the report for the graphic below.

Volunteering in America 2011 - Volunteers are resolute in their commitment to the nation, serving almost 8.1 billion hours
about the same as if every single person in the United States volunteered for more than an entire day without sleeping which translates to $173 billion.
Volunteer rate by age group: Millennials (16-28) - 21.2%; Generation X (29-45) - 29.2%; Baby Boomers (46-64) - 28.8%; Older Adults (65+) - 23.6%
Now more than ever, volunteers are an indispensable anchor of every community's infrastructure.
More than 100 mayors across the country have recognized the impact of service in their cities. How do the states rank? Salt Lake City ranks #1 for number of volunteer hours per resident (54.5). The Minneapolis-St. Paul metropolitan area ranks #1 for volunteerism (37.1%).
Whate are volunteers doing? 23.5% work to meet the needs of their neighbors by collecting, preparing, distributing, or serving food. 20.3% contribute much needed sweat hours through general labor or providing transportation. 18.5% help students succeed in school and prepare for the future by tutoring and teaching. 17% mentor youth.
Top-Ranked Activities. Millennials (16-28): Fundraise; General Labor / Transportation; Mentor Youth; Collect, Prepare, Distribute, or Serve Food. Generation X (29-45): Fundraise; Tutor / Teach; Collect, Prepare, Distribute, or Serve Food; Mentor Youth. Baby Boomers (46-64): Fundraise; Collect, Prepare, Distribute, or Serve Food; Professional / Management Assistance; General Labor / Transportation. Older Adults (65+): Collect, Prepare, Distribute, or Serve Food; Fundraise; Professional / Management Assistance; General Labor / Transportation.
While organizations across the country are struggling to provide more services with fewer resources, volunteers are making a real and lasting impact. To learn how your community stacks up, visit VolunteeringInAmerica.gov. To find volunteer opportunities in your area, visit Serve.gov. Corporation for National and Community Service.

The Volunteering in America report is a partnership between CNCS, the U.S. Census Bureau, and the Bureau for Labor Statistics to collect volunteering data annually through the Current Population Survey's Supplement on Volunteering.

The report includes information for all 50 states, Washington, DC, and 198 cities, including 51 large cities, 75 mid-size cities, and 72 additional cities, based on Metropolitan Statistical Areas.

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