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Young people help out

The 'Helping Out' study carried out in 2006-07 provided a new evidence-base about people's volunteering and giving in England.

This bulletin provides findings on formal volunteering by young people and young people's levels and motives for giving. This is relevant as issues of improving skills and increasing employability are high on the volunteering agenda and seen as an an important way to engage young people in their communities, in times where many young people find themselves alienated. Volunteering can be seen as a way of integrating young people prone to crime and anti-social behaviour.

The study found that 57% of young people had formally volunteered over the previous year. The most popular place to volunteer was for an educational organisation. Raising and handling money was the most popular type of volunteering. The majority of young people expressed that wanting to improve things and help people was the main motivating factor. Most young people's experience of volunteering was positive and they were more likely than other groups to be provided with a role description but also more likely to be asked for a Criminal Records Bureau Check.

The study also found that young people give as regularly as other groups although the amount was nearly half of the average for all age groups.

The study gives a positive account of young people's volunteering experiences where over half get involved in volunteering and three quarters give to a charity. The bulletin offers suggestions for recruiting more young people.

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