The IJOVA Volume XXIV, Number 5


In This Issue: "When Ability and Will Combine: Volunteer Motivations and Incentives," R. Dale Safrit, Ed.D., Editor-In-Chief ... link to pdf


“If I can see further, it is because I have stood on the shoulders of giants,” R. Dale Safrit, Ed.D. ... link to pdf


Correlates of Satisfaction in Older Volunteers: A Motivational Perspective
Marcia A. Finkelstein, Ph.D.
The author used motivational analysis to examine the role of satisfaction with volunteerism in a sample of older volunteers. The motivational approach proposes that volunteering serves specific needs or motives. The more the experience fulfills them, the more satisfied the individual and the greater the commitment to continue volunteering. The aim of the study was to clarify the relationship between volunteer satisfaction and motive strength, motive fulfillment, time spent volunteering, and length of service, respectively. The results supported the motivational perspective. Motive strength and fulfillment correlated with satisfaction which, in turn, predicted time spent volunteering. Less satisfied volunteers devoted fewer hours but nonetheless often remained long-term volunteers. The findings suggest that to best utilize and maintain volunteers, motivations for helping should be determined early in the process and periodically re-assessed. ... link to pdf
Key Words:volunteers, satisfaction, motivation

Exemplary Volunteers: What Is the Role of Faith?
Laura Littlepage, James L. Perry, Ph.D., Jeffrey L. Brudney, Ph.D., & Philip K. Goff, Ph.D.
This study investigates the motivations and voluntary activities of exemplary volunteers. The researchers surveyed winners of the Daily Point of Light Awards and the President’s Community Volunteer Awards and conducted in-depth telephone interviews with a sample of the mail survey respondents. Researchers then compared the survey data with information about typical volunteers. The findings indicated that although award-winners are more likely to be religious than the general population, most religious award-winning volunteers contribute their efforts to religious and nonreligious organizations. Also, many award-winning volunteers not religiously active have a spiritual motivation. Some began volunteer work after experiencing “life- changing” events. Award winners generally respond favorably to public recognition in the local media, or at their school, worksite, or place of volunteering. ... link to pdf
Key Words:volunteer, motivation, religion, faith

Trust, Job Satisfaction, Organizational Commitment, and the Volunteer’s Psychological Contract
Becky J. Starnes, Ph.D.
Studies indicate that psychological contracts can develop between volunteers and the nonprofit organizations they serve and that this relationship plays a role in volunteer performance and retention. This study explored the relationships between volunteers’ levels of trust, job satisfaction, and organizational commitment and their perceptions of organizational breaches of the contract. The data indicated decreases in job satisfaction may influence volunteers’ perceptions of contract breach but trust and organizational commitment did not. ... link to pdf
Key Words:volunteers, satisfaction, commitment, trust, psychological contracts

A Functional Approach to Senior Volunteer and Non-volunteer Motivations
Carlton F. Yoshioka, Ph.D., William A. Brown, Ph.D., & Robert F. Ashcraft, Ph.D.
Understanding volunteer motivation has been widely recognized by both researchers and administrators as a valuable component of management of volunteers. This paper utilized the multifactor functional approach derived from theories on attitudes to examine the motivations of active seniors that volunteer and those that did not volunteer. In general, the results supported the use of the multifactor functional approach (using the Volunteer Function Inventory scale) with seniors involved in human service organizations. Findings suggested several considerations for volunteer administrators to promote volunteerism among current volunteers and those with a desire to volunteer. ... link to pdf
Key Words:volunteers, motivations, seniors, non-volunteers


Nonprofit Risk Management & Contingency Planning – Done In A Day Strategies
Peggy M. Jackson. (2006). Hoboken, NJ: John Wiley & Sons, Inc. (193 pp.; Hardback, ISBN-13: 978-0-471-71749-2). Reviewed by Mary Kay Hood. ... link to pdf


Volunteering: A Comparison of the Motivations of Collegiate Students Attending Different Types of Institutions
David J. Burns, Ph.D., Mark Toncar, Ph.D., Jane Reid, Ph.D., Cynthia Anderson, Ph.D., Cassandra Wells, Ph.D., Jeffrey Fawcett,Ph.D., & Kathleen Gruben, Ph.D.
College-aged young adults spend significant amounts of time in voluntary activities and may represent an important pool of future volunteers. Consequently, understanding the motivations for volunteering, of students attending different types of colleges and universities, appears to be worthwhile. Do individuals attending different types of universities possess differing motivations to volunteer? The results suggest that students attending different types of universities differ in their motivations to volunteer. The primary differences involved students attending a public commuter university and an African-American liberal arts university. The results are discusses. ... link to pdf
Key Words:volunteer, motivations, college, university, students

Maximizing Elder Volunteerism and Service: Access, Incentives, and Facilitation
Madhura Nagchoudhuri, Amanda Moore McBride, Ph.D., Prema Thirupathy, Nancy Morrow-Howell, & Fengyan Tang
With an increase in the number of adults who are living longer healthier lives, volunteer administrators having a growing pool of potential volunteers. What strategies effectively recruit and retain older volunteers? In focus groups with 43 older volunteers, their perceptions of institutional access, information, incentives, and facilitation are assessed. Findings suggest that older adults may access volunteer opportunities through direct agency contact or social networks, more so than formal ads. They report that interest in the organization’s cause and meaningful task assignments serve as incentives for volunteering. Flexibility in task assignment, verbal appreciation, and transportation facilitate role performance. These findings suggest that informal strategies and respect for older adults’ expertise and current capabilities are important in recruitment and retention of older volunteers. ... link to pdf
Key Words:older, seniors, volunteers, recruitment, retention, incentives

Volunteer Attrition: Lessons Learned From Oregon’s Long-Term Care Ombudsman Program
H. Wayne Nelson, Jr., Ph.D., F. Ellen Netting, Ph.D., Kevin W. Borders, Ph.D., & Ruth Huiber, Ph.D.
A telephone survey of 136 active and 170 former volunteer ombudsmen asked the two open ended questions reported here. Both groups were asked to identify “the most discouraging aspect of the ombudsman’s job,” and former ombudsmen were also asked why they had left the program. Responses fell into four general groups (each with numerous sub-categories): (a) Program Factors (supervision, training, policies), (b) Personal Factors (health, family, time), (c) Power Factors (volunteer status, legal authority), and (d) System Adversity (troubled facilities, resident impairment, poor enforcement and so forth). Although the Personal Factors group emerged as the number one ranked reason for quitting, program factors (led by the sub-category of poor supervisory support) emerged as the most discouraging aspect of service, and was the second ranked reason for quitting. Implications are discussed with recommendations for reducing volunteer dissatisfaction and turnover. ... link to pdf
Key Words:ombudsmen, attrition, volunteers, dissatisfaction, turnover

Reasons for and Barriers to Participating in Volunteerism and Service: A Comparison of Ohio Youth in Grades 5-8 and 9-12
R. Dale Safrit, Ed.D., Rosemary R. Gliem, Ph.D., & Joseph A. Gliem, Ph.D.
The authors analyzed existing data investigating volunteerism and service among Ohio youth. Principle components analysis resulted in four factors explaining respondents’ reasons for providing volunteerism/service for both grade levels: Grades 5-8: 1) Adult and Peer Pressure; 2) Adult Encouragement; 3) Altruistic Reasons; and 4) Spiritual Reasons; Grades 9-12: 1) Personal and Altruistic Importance; 2) Education and Career Advancement; 3) Parent, Teacher, and/or Mentor Encouragement; and 4) Social and Peer Influences. Data analysis resulted in three factors explaining barriers to volunteerism/service, again for both grade levels: Grades 5-8: 1) Low Personal Interest; 2) Personal Challenges; and 3) Weak Connectedness to Volunteerism; Grades 9-12: 1) Low Personal Interest; 2) Weak Connectedness to Volunteerism; and 3) Time Constraints. Volunteer administrators from Ohio and states with similar school demographics should consider these reasons and barriers when designing or restructuring youth volunteerism and service programs. ... link to pdf
Key Words:youth, volunteerism, community service, reasons, barriers, Ohio

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