Volunteering is Good for Your Health! 

If you’ve spent time with any Surrey volunteer, you know they feel good about what they are doing. Did you know that scientific research has proven that volunteering is good for your health? Volunteers help themselves while helping others, according to a study by the Corporation for National and Community Service. The report shows that volunteers have greater longevity, higher functional ability, lower rates of depression and less incidence of heart disease. 

“Volunteering makes the heart grow stronger,” said David Eisner, CEO of the Corporation. A study of adults aged 65 and older found that the positive effects on both physical and mental health are due to the personal sense of accomplishment the individual gains. Those over 70 who volunteered for 100 hours per year, or about two hours per week, experienced lower levels of depression, had more longevity and enjoyed significant health benefits. 

“Civic engagement and volunteering is the new hybrid health club for the 21st century that’s free to join,” says Thomas H. Sander, executive director of the Saguaro Seminar at Harvard University. “Research shows it miraculously improves both your health AND the communities through the work performed and social ties built.”  

Researchers have also found that when patients with chronic or serious illness volunteer, they receive benefits beyond what can be achieved through medical care.  A Duke University study found that those who volunteered after experiencing a heart attack reported reductions in despair and depression, two factors that are linked to mortality in post-coronary artery disease patients.  

The hurdle most people face is finding a volunteer opportunity that engages them enough so that they continue with the activity.  At Surrey, there are opportunities covering a myriad of interests. Volunteer drivers and kitchen assistance are always needed. Other people pack and deliver meals to homebound seniors or work in offices helping with administrative support. A retired artist teaches an art class, Surrey Consignment Shop is manned by volunteers, and volunteers are key for Surrey’s fundraising events.  A simple phone call means the world to homebound seniors, which is something volunteers do too.   

Whatever your passion, you can help make a difference to seniors in our neighborhoods as a volunteer. Find your fit with Surrey. 


For more information on volunteering at Surrey, contact Diane at 484-321-6102