Bureau of Labor Statistics

Organizations for which volunteers work

January 02, 2003

The organization for which the volunteer worked the most hours during the year for the majority of volunteers in 2002 was either religious (33.9 percent) or educational/youth-service related (27.2 percent).

Percent distribution of volunteers by type of main organization, September 2002
[Chart data—TXT]

Another 12.1 percent of volunteers performed activities mainly for social or community service organizations, and 8.6 percent volunteered the most hours for hospitals or other health organizations.

Older volunteers were more likely to volunteer mainly for religious organizations, such as churches, than their younger counterparts. For example, 45.2 percent of volunteers age 65 and over performed volunteer activities mainly through or for a religious organization, compared with 28.6 percent of volunteers age 25 to 34 years.

Among volunteers with children under 18 years, 45.9 percent of mothers and 37.9 percent of fathers volunteered mainly for an educational/youth-service related organization, such as a school or little league. Parents were more than twice as likely to volunteer for such organizations as persons with no children of that age. Conversely, volunteers with no children under 18 were about twice as likely as parents to volunteer for a social or community service organization, such as a homeless shelter or a senior citizen center.

These data are from a supplement to the September 2002 Current Population Survey. Data in this article refer to the period from September 2001 to September 2002. Find out more in "Volunteering in the United States," news release USDL 02-686.


Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, The Economics Daily, Organizations for which volunteers work at https://www.bls.gov/opub/ted/2002/dec/wk5/art03.htm (visited November 27, 2021).


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