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Study Shows One-Third of America’s Volunteers Serve through Religious Organizations

Posted: 0000-00-00 00:00:00

Our affiliate has been blessed to partner with so many amazing area churches this year! Thank you to all the churches who have organized fundraisers, brought lunch to volunteer crews, helped fold the newsletter, hosted our meetings, and brought volunteer crews out to build sites. Together we are building homes...building hope...right here in northern St. Louis County.

Washington DC. - Faith-based organizations have a profound impact on volunteering in the United States, according to a report released today by the Corporation for National and Community Service.

The Volunteering in America 2009 report found that more than one third of America's 61.8 million volunteers (35.9%) served with or through a religious organization in 2008, more than any other type of organization.

“Using this information, nonprofit organizations can work to create new partnerships focusing on volunteer service,” said Joshua DuBois, executive director of the White House Office of Faith-Based and Neighborhood Partnerships. “There are millions of volunteers who want to be a part of critical efforts from mentoring children to improving schools to helping their neighbors meet their basic needs. The President has called upon all of us to join together in these difficult times, and this report highlights the possibilities of doing just that.”

Previous research from the Corporation found that volunteers who serve with faith-based organizations are the most likely to continue serving. Seventy percent of volunteers who serve primarily through religious organizations continue serving from year to year, higher than any other type of organization. Despite the popularity of volunteering through faith-based organizations, only about 15 percent of nonprofit charities report partnerships with faith-based organizations.

“Religious organizations are a key source of potential volunteers for nonprofit organizations,” said Nicola Goren, the Corporation's acting CEO. “Nonprofits looking to expand their reach and impact may find it beneficial to work more closely with religious organizations in their communities, especially in these tough economic times.”

The 2009 report found that even during an economic downturn, when charitable giving experienced a significant drop, volunteering remained steady. Volunteering in America 2009, the most comprehensive data ever assembled on volunteer trends and demographics, found that a total of 61.8 million Americans volunteered through an organization in 2008, up one million from the previous year. Those volunteers dedicated more than 8 billion hours of service worth an estimated $162 billion...

Read more at the AmeriCorps blog at http://www.americorps.gov/about/newsroom/releases_detail.asp?tbl_pr_id=1427