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Part-time workers most likely to lend a hand - Stats NZ

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Fuseworks Media
Fuseworks Media

Part-time workers, particularly women and those aged 65 years and older, were the workers most likely to do volunteer work, Stats NZ said today.

"These results from the Household Labour Force Survey are in line with other volunteering data sources," labour market manager Sean Broughton said.

"We see similar themes across various data sources for volunteer work, but each has a different purpose, context, and collection method.

"This means the data on volunteer work from this survey is not directly comparable with other Stats NZ sources, such as the Time Use Survey and General Social Survey."

This was the first time questions on volunteer work were included in the Household Labour Force Survey. The data will be collected in the June quarter every two years, with the next being in June 2020.

Volunteer work is non-compulsory, unpaid work performed for others outside a person’s own household or family business.

"This might include volunteering through organisations, such as being a member of your local committee, as well as volunteer work done directly for others, such as mowing your neighbour’s lawn," Mr Broughton said.

Women working part-time most likely to volunteer

Part-time workers were more likely to do volunteer work than full-time workers. Women who worked part-time were more likely to do volunteer work than men who worked part-time.

Among part-time workers, those aged 65 years and over were more likely to do volunteer work than all other age groups.

Women volunteer more hours

Men accounted for almost 60 percent of paid work hours, with the balance done by women. When it came to volunteering, women did about 60 percent of all volunteered hours.

One-third of all volunteers were people who were not in the labour force, such as retirees and students. However, they did more than 40 percent of total hours volunteered.

Lowest- and highest-paid volunteer most

People who received the least and most (gross) income a week (except those who had no income) from wages and salaries, self-employment, or government transfers had the highest rates of volunteer work. About one-quarter of people who either received a weekly income of less than $500 a week, or received $1,500 or more a week, volunteered.

People who received at least $500 but less than $1,000 a week were more likely to do volunteer work directly for other people than for an organisation. In contrast, those who received $1,500 and over were more likely to do volunteer work for an organisation.

Professionals more likely to volunteer for organisations

People doing paid work in certain occupations and industries were more likely to either volunteer for an organisation or directly for others.

Those whose main paid job was in a professional occupation, such as teachers and nurses, were more likely to do volunteer work for organisations. Similarly, those who worked in the financial and insurance service industry were more likely to do volunteer work for organisations.

Workers in the construction industry were more likely to do volunteer work directly for others.

Caregiving and coaching among most-common activities

The most-common volunteer work was community and personal services, such as caregiving or coaching sports. This was followed by labouring, such as farming or construction activities. These types of volunteer work were more likely to be performed directly for others, rather than for an organisation.

Over 85 percent of all volunteer workers who did organisation-based work did so for a non-profit organisation.

Among non-profit organisations, those related to culture, sport, and recreation had more volunteer workers than other types of organisations. This was followed by non-profit organisations related to religion.

"These volunteers could be coaching local sports teams or helping at their local church," Mr Broughton said.

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