Volunteering is linked to improved wellbeing, research says

Doing good does more than ease the need in our community. Doing good feels great! 

SHARE Omaha and The Wellbeing Partners are spreading the word about the mental health and wellbeing benefits of volunteerism. In highlighting the positive outcomes of giving your time to greater Omaha metro nonprofits, we hope to welcome new volunteers and hear stories of how doing good has benefited you personally.

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According to a United Health Group Study, volunteering brings:

HEALTH - Volunteers say that they feel better, physically, mentally and emotionally

PURPOSE - Volunteers feel a deeper connection to others and their community

LESS STRESS - Volunteering helps people manage and lower stress levels

"Volunteers have better personal scores than non-volunteers on nine well-established measures of emotional wellbeing including personal independence, capacity for rich interpersonal relationships and overall satisfaction with life. Volunteering also improved their mood and self-esteem. It’s true —Volunteering makes us feel better. And while we’re feeling better, we’re also helping all kinds of other people who benefit from our volunteer efforts feel better too. Everybody wins when we volunteer,” says the United Health Group study.

A recent Time.com article points to benefits for youth as well: "Volunteering through school, a religious organization, or a community group is associated with better overall health and wellness among children and adolescents, the researchers found. Compared to kids who hadn’t participated in community service in the past year, those who had were 34% more likely to be in excellent or very good health and 66% more likely to be considered “flourishing” (a positive measure of overall well-being)."

WebMD even has a term for that feeling people have after volunteering. They call it "The Helper's High" and describe it as a feeling of "prolonged calmness, a reduction in stress and a greater sense of self-worth after doing something kind for someone else." (Mental Benefits of Volunteering)

How will you do good today?