ERIC Number: ED058552
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1971-Sep
Reference Count: N/A
SERVE: Older Volunteers in Community Service. A New Role and a New Resource.
Sainer, Janet S.; Zander, Mary L.
This document reports on a demonstration project using older volunteers in community service in one area of a large city. Questions for which answers were sought include: (1) What type of activities might older adults be given that would be both meaningful and useful; (2) What kinds of community agencies would use the services of volunteers most effectively; (3) How can older adults be motivated in the direction of community service; (4) How can those who will benefit from volunteer service be recruited and retained; and (5) What sort of volunteer workers will older persons be? An exploratory survey was conducted to: (1) gather data about the older adult population in the area, (2) determine what opportunities were available for older volunteers in health, welfare, and educational and cultural agencies, and (3) assess the potential for recruiting older adults. Findings include: (1) Older persons are willing and able to volunteer on a regular basis if agency needs are real, if appropriate assignments are available, if transportation is provided, and if staff leadership is present on an ongoing basis; (2) Volunteers of low socioeconomic status can be recruited and retained; (3) Persons in their seventies had excellent attendance and a high retention rate; (4) Most volunteers functioned consistently and well; (5) The major reasons for volunteering were need for social contacts and to find a useful and satisfying instrumental role; (6) A program of volunteer service requires step-by-step development over a period of time and grows out of a personal appeal. (CK)
Descriptors: Attitudes, Community Organizations, Community Services, Cultural Enrichment, Demonstration Programs, Health Services, Human Resources, Interpersonal Relationship, Leadership, Motivation Techniques, Older Adults, Public Agencies, Questionnaires, Recruitment, Resources, Role Perception, Social Workers, Socioeconomic Status, Surveys, Task Performance, Urban Areas, Volunteers, Welfare Services
Publication Type: N/A
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: Administration on Aging (DHEW), Washington, DC.
Authoring Institution: Community Service Society of New York, NY.