A federal survey ranks Nebraska number-six in the country for volunteerism, with more than 40% of Nebraskans donating their time, well above the national average of around 30%.
Barbara Stewart, CEO of the Corporation for National and Community Service, says from religious groups to educational endeavors, Nebraskans are very generous with their giving.
“People are providing service in many different ways to the organizations they care about,” Stewart says. “Mentoring, working in fundraising, helping collect and prepare food for food banks and soup kitchens, there’s a huge range of activities people are engaging in.”
The report finds Nebraskans donated more than 53-million hours of their time last year with an economic impact of more than $1-billion.
While many Nebraskans donate their time through organizations, many others take part in what’s considered “informal volunteering,” which may just be lending a hand to the person next door.
“Neighbors help neighbors. People help the elderly couple down the street or babysit or tutor for a child in their neighborhood,” Stewart says. “While that may not be with an organization, it is similarly impactful and a really important part of being an American and being a neighbor to one another.”
While Nebraska ranks sixth overall for volunteerism, the state ranks fifth in the nation for parental engagement.
“People are most likely to volunteer during the years when they are parents,” Stewart says. “In their early 30s to their early 50s tend to be the years where the largest percentage of Americans volunteer and that’s largely because that’s the time when they’re being asked most frequently.”
The study also finds 59% of Nebraskans donate at least $25 to charity each year.
The top three states in the Volunteering in America report are Utah, Minnesota and Oregon, while the bottom three are Nevada, Mississippi and Florida. Learn more about how to volunteer in your own community at serve.gov.