At the American Red Cross, we are extremely fortunate to have a dedicated volunteer workforce made up of hundreds of thousands of members who give selflessly to alleviate human suffering in the face of emergencies.
Volunteer service is an incredible force, helping to tackle society’s greatest challenges, build stronger communities, and change the world! For that reason, it’s important that we shine a light on the people and causes that inspire us to serve, and recognize and thank the many volunteers who lend their time, talent and voices to make a difference in our communities.
Volunteers constitute about 90% of the Red Cross workforce. They make it possible for us to respond to an average of more than 62,000 disasters across the country every year, and they fulfill a wide array of roles in our region — from responding to fires in the middle of the night, to coordinating blood drives, serving as board members, teaching lifesaving skills, helping local veterans, and much, much more.
We know that our volunteers are changing people’s lives with their selfless service. But did you know that volunteering could measurably improve your own life?!
Volunteering Can Make You Happier and Healthier!
According to the Corporation for National and Community Service, a growing body of research indicates that volunteering provides individual health benefits in addition to social benefits. “Those who volunteer have lower mortality rates, greater functional ability, and lower rates of depression later in life than those who do not volunteer.” Furthermore, “those who engage in volunteer activities are less likely to suffer from ill health later in life and may be introduced into a positive reinforcing cycle of good health and future volunteering.”
For more on the health benefits of volunteering, check out this article from NBC News, which summarizes a study in which “individuals who reported volunteering at least 200 hours in the 12 months leading up to the survey had a 40% lower risk of having high blood pressure four years later than those that had volunteered less.”
Volunteering could also help you develop skills and experience that will be valued in your current job – or that might help you find your next one! This article from Next Avenue describes how volunteering has been found to pay off for job seekers!
Volunteer with the American Red Cross!
Whether you’re hoping to capitalize on one of the many personal benefits of volunteering, or you simply want to find a way to spend more of your time serving others, we would love for you to join our team! Volunteers are the heart and soul of the American Red Cross, filling critical roles and touching every facet of our work. To learn more and start your own Red Cross story, visit redcross.org/volunteer.