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Volunteerism

Volunteering refers to individuals giving their time for the benefit of others on account of their own free choice and not because of financial remuneration, a sense of obligation, a mandate, or coercion. Although the term is typically used to describe behavior that is done through formal organizations (e.g., educational, religious, human services), it is also sometimes used to refer to helping within the context of one’s own private network of relationships, such as neighbors, friends, and relatives. Research on the facilitators and effects of volunteerism continues to grow in the context of ongoing enthusiasm for volunteering as a way to benefit individuals, organizations, and society as a whole. This entry provides an overview of scholarship that has been conducted on volunteering specifically from a ...

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