Three Europeans in ten do voluntary work
London (UK), March 30, 2007 - Close to 8 out of 10 EU citizens consider helping others or voluntary work an important aspect of their life, whilst 3 out of 10 actively practice it, according to the findings of the Special Eurobarometer survey conducted by TNS Opinion for the European Commission.
The survey, which interviewed nearly 26,800 people across the 27 Member States, also shows that although most Europeans do not actively participate or do voluntary work, at least not in or for any of the organisations listed in the questionnaire (65 %), the European average conceals large differences between the Member States and, in some countries, the percentage of citizens who declare to actively participate in or do voluntary work for an organisation is quite high. In fact, in Austria (60 %), the Netherlands (55 %) Sweden (53 %) and Germany (52 %) over half of the respondents claim to be active participants in the organisations listed. Conversely, participation levels are the lowest in Bulgaria (10 %), Lithuania (11 %) and Portugal (12 %).
Two socio-demographic factors influencing people’s propensity to ‘be active’ are occupation and education. Nearly half of people classified as managers actively participate in or do voluntary work for the organisations listed (49 %), compared to only 20 % of unemployed people. With regards to education, the data shows that the longer people stayed in full-time education the more likely it is that they actively participate in or do voluntary work for the organisations listed.
It is interesting to note that the degree to which people participate actively in organisations or do voluntary work does not depend on whether workers have jobs that allow them to balance their professional, family and private life or on whether they find their job stressful and demanding.
Marita Carballo, Global Head of TNS Polling & Social, comments: “Volunteer work constitutes a genuine and positive form of social participation and an act of altruism. It is good to learn that a significant proportion of Europeans devote some of their time for the benefit of others”.
About TNS Polling & Social Facts and Figures:
The Eurobarometer report was posted at the following website on February
The European Commission has made data from this report available to relevant media since it was first published. To the best of our knowledge, the findings in the attached press release have not been released.
These findings are based on TNS Opinion research conducted between November and December 2006. All data discussed in the above announcement is based on the opinions of those surveyed. TNS will only support data which is published, in the context we have presented it and our own interpretation of these findings. We cannot be held responsible for any other interpretation.
As a leading information provider, TNS wants to cast new light on currently debated topics presenting data collected on a European or International basis. TNS Polling & Social Facts & Figures will be published twice a month.
Fieldwork: 17th of November to the
19th of December 2006
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For more information and detailed results on a country-by-country basis, please contact:
Marita Carballo, Global Head of TNS Polling & Social
Leendert de Voogd, Managing Director, TNS Opinion
Katie Zurita, International PR Manager, TNS
Liz Kearney / Emily Luscombe, Camargue
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