Aging in America Conference
Place of conference
New Orleans, Louisiana
American Society on Aging
This poster presentation reviews findings from a recent national survey of older adult RSVP volunteers that examined role conflict and role enhancement among active older adult volunteers. Survey findings are presented along with implications for volunteer program administrators for how they can best engage with volunteers who are juggling additional life role responsibilities (paid work, caregiving, and informal helping/volunteering) in addition to their formal volunteer role.
The phase I survey for this project was implemented across 55 RSVP program sites nationally engaging a total of 1,697 older adult volunteer who returned surveys (response rate = 25%). These surveys yielded 1,229 individual write-in responses regarding perceived ways that formal volunteering accrues benefits for volunteers in their worker, caregiver, and informal helping roles. Benefits of formal volunteering reported by respondents included: new work connections and work-related skills, new employment and new employment opportunities for older adult workers; caregiver responses indicated increased socialization in general and the opportunity to connect with other caregivers, along with an increased awareness of community resources available to caregivers. Those who also participated in informal helping reported a greater awareness of community needs along with personal growth that benefited their informal helping role.
Crittenden, Jennifer and Butler, Sandy, "Role Enhancement for Older Volunteers: How Does Formal Volunteering Complement Other Life Roles?" (2019). Maine Center on Aging Research and Evaluation. 44.
publisher's version of the published document
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