Need to convince members of your church to volunteer? Tell them volunteering will help them be happier, healthier, and live longer. And it’s true!
Consider these facts:
- An online national survey of 4,500 Americans by United Healthcare found that people who volunteer have less trouble sleeping, less anxiety, less helplessness and hopelessness, better friendships and social networks, and a sense of control over chronic conditions.
- The November 2014 Psychological Bulletin found that, among seniors, volunteering is likely to reduce the risk of dementia and is associated with reduced symptoms of depression, better self-reported health, fewer functional limitations and lower mortality.
- In a June 2013 study from Carnegie Mellon University, adults over 50 who volunteered at least 200 hours in the past year (four hours per week) were 40 percent less likely to develop high blood pressure than non-volunteers.
- A recent study of 10th-graders at a Vancouver high school found that students who spent an hour a week helping children in after-school programs over 10 weeks had lower levels of inflammation and cholesterol, plus a lower body-mass index.
- Research from Alcoholics Anonymous show those in the program who help other alcoholics double their likelihood of overcoming alcoholism one year after going dry.
- A 2012 study at the University of Michigan found that older adult volunteers had a lower risk of dying in a four-year period than non-volunteers.
And on top of all these facts—ministry volunteers know they are serving God; serving people. What a deal. Sign me up!