4 Surprising Ways Volunteering Benefits YOU

It’s no secret that volunteering is a wonderful thing you can do to benefit your community – but, did you know that volunteering can also be good for YOU?

In honor of International Volunteer Day on December 5th, why not seek out a volunteering opportunity meaningful to you?

In case you want extra inspiration to volunteer, see below for some surprising benefits of volunteering:

1. Physical and Mental Health Benefits

Research has shown that volunteering is related to better health outcomes and a longer lifespan.  Specifically, volunteering is associated with lower rates of depression and anxiety, lower rates of mortality, reduced stress, and decreased risk of heart disease.

Depending on how you volunteer, you may also be getting more physical activity!

These effects appear to be even greater in older volunteers.  Volunteering earlier still has benefits, though!  In fact, evidence suggests that those who volunteer at a younger age are less likely to suffer from ill health later in life.

2. Life Satisfaction

Studies show volunteers experience higher levels of life satisfaction, happiness, self-worth, and self-esteem.

Volunteering can also provide a sense of purpose. This is important because research shows that people with a sense of purpose live longer, sleep better, and have a more robust immune system. They also have better cognitive function and lower levels of stress.

3. Social Interaction and Connectedness

Social connection has a positive impact on health and can help reduce a person’s stress as well as risk of disease. Volunteering is a great way to meet new people with similar interests and can even provide a sense of community.

4. Valuable Skills

No matter how you volunteer, chances are you are learning new or honing old skills!  Volunteering is a great way to discover a new talent or passion, keep learning, stay active, and sharpen your existing skills.



Bishop, R., Ph.D., L.P. (2023, March 15). Does purpose play a positive role in mental health? Retrieved November 29, 2023,
from https://www.mayoclinichealthsystem.org/hometown-health/speaking-of-health/purpose-and-mental-health

Corporation for National and Community Service, Office of Research and Policy
Development. The Health Benefits of Volunteering: A Review of Recent Research, Washington, DC 2007

Thoreson, A., L.I.C.S.W. (2023, August 1). Helping people, changing lives: 3 health benefits of volunteering. Retrieved November 29, 2023, from https://www.mayoclinichealthsystem.org/hometown-health/speaking-of-health/3-health-benefits-of-volunteering


We want you to be well and to live your best life. The content in this blog is provided for the purposes to educate and entertain you: our very important reader. It is not intended as medical advice or as a substitute for medical advice from a trained healthcare professional.

If you have a medical condition or are under the care of a medical provider, please always seek the advice of a qualified medical professional before undertaking a new health care regimen. To that point, never disregard medical advice or delay treatment for a medical condition because of something you read on this site.

Listen to your care providers as they know you and your condition best. Thank you for reading!

The Team at BSDI

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