Giving Back Pays Big Dividends For Local Volunteers
TNDC and our residents gain so much from volunteers. Individuals and volunteer groups work in our offices, provide homework help and tutoring in our after-school program, and in 2015 alone, corporate groups spent well over 300 hours planting, weeding, and harvesting in our Tenderloin People’s Garden. Quite simply, TNDC would not be able to provide the rich programming that we do without this generous support. We are happy to report that there are a number of benefits that our volunteers gain from their contribution as well, including:
• Improved Health – UnitedHealth Group (NYSE:UNH) and the Optum Institute study reveals that people who volunteer report that they feel better, physically and mentally, and experience lower stress levels than those who don’t volunteer. Long term, employers who support their staff in community volunteering can expect lower health care costs and decreased levels of stress contributes to higher productivity and levels of engagement.
• Strengthened Work Skills – Volunteer activities build employee skills and contribute to professional development or competencies including leadership and teamwork. Beyond individual skills, group volunteering can generate higher levels of trust between individual employees, and as a result strengthen work teams and
• More Time – Volunteering time makes you feel like you have more time. Wharton Professor Cassie Mogilner wrote in the Harvard Business Review that her research found that those that volunteer their time feel like they have more time. This is similar to other research showing
that people who donate to charity feel wealthier.
Haley Caldwell, TNDC’s Volunteer and Corporate Outreach Coordinator says, “People who volunteer leave feeling connected to and inspired by TNDC’s mission. They come away understanding that TNDC does so much for the community beyond affordable housing. People want to be a part of that.”