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Building Independence / Community Hub / Health and wellbeing / Social Inclusion / Volunteering

Our wellbeing benefits, of 700 million hours volunteering!

By Jennifer Lumsden, May 21 2020

Did you know Australians spend an incredible 700 million hours volunteering every year?

We know that volunteers enjoy the feeling of helping others, but there are other less well-known benefits for our overall health and happiness.
A recent study showed that volunteers were 42% more likely to say they were very happy than those who did not participate in volunteer work.

Creates social connections

Volunteering connects people. It gives the chance to expand your social network and to improve your social skills while doing something worthwhile.
Volunteering can develop a sense of community and build a support network.
Creating meaningful social connections with others can have a profound impact on our overall mental health and wellbeing.

Reduces loneliness

Despite technology making it easier than ever to connect with others, loneliness is becoming more common with many people lacking meaningful relationships.
Volunteering gives a sense of belonging through hueeman connection that can translate to quality friendships and learning opportunities, all while doing something worthwhile and fun.
Volunteering can help get us out of the house and offer a sense of purpose and routine. Having a routine and ‘somewhere to be’ builds a sense of purpose that can alleviate stress, anger, and anxiety and ease depression.

Volunteering and brain activity

Helping others can trigger the reward pathway in our brain, known as the mesolimbic system to releases positive chemicals, called neurotransmitters, making us feel better about ourselves. This, in turn, can have a profound effect on our self-esteem and relationships.

So have a go at volunteering, do it for your mental health and wellbeing.

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