Past research suggests that senior citizens often face challenges related to deteriorating physical and men- tal health, and the quality of their lives may suffer as a result. Past research also suggests that volunteering can improve the health and quality of life for seniors. In the present study, 451 volunteers enrolled in the Retired and Senior Volunteer Program (RSVP) completed surveys including questions regarding their volunteer experiences and how these experiences have affected their health and quality of life. The results suggest that volunteering through RSVP is associated with improvements in health and quality of life across a variety of dimensions. Furthermore, these improvements may be particularly greater for women, current volunteers, and older seniors. These findings may help guide interventions designed to enhance the health and well-being of senior citizens in a variety of settings.
This document was originally published by Scientific Research in Psychology. Copyright restrictions may apply. DOI: 10.4236/psych.2013.43A042
McDonald, Theodore W.; Chown, Erica L.; Tabb, Jordan E.; Schaeffer, Amy K.; and Howard, Elsa K. M.. (2013). "The Impact of Volunteering on Seniors’ Health and Quality of Life: An Assessment of the Retired and Senior Volunteer Program". Psychology, 4(3A), 283-290.