EMPLOYMENT AND VOLUNTARY WORK
VOLUNTARY WORK SURVEY 2000
In 2000 the ABS conducted a Voluntary Work Survey to measure the extent to which Australians donate their time. Almost a third (4.4 million persons) of Australians aged 18 years and over undertook voluntary work in the 12 months before interview in the year 2000. Sports and physical recreation organisations had the largest number of volunteers, receiving help from 1.1 million persons. Education, training and youth development organisations also had more than one million volunteers during this period, while Community and welfare organisations had just under one million.
Overall, the proportion of the population who volunteered was slightly higher for females than males - 33.0% of females undertook voluntary work compared with 30.5% of males. However, for sports organisations, the rate was higher for males - 10.0% of males undertook voluntary work for sports organisations compared with 6.5% of females.
7.11 VOLUNTEERS(a), By type of organisation assisted - 2000
|Organisations in scope of the ACLC(b) |
|Heritage and arts |
|Sports and physical recreation |
|Interest clubs and groups |
|Religious organisations |
|Other culture and leisure |
|Other organisations |
|Business, professional and union |
|Community and welfare |
|Education, training and youth development |
|Emergency services |
|Environment and animal welfare |
|Foreign and international |
|Law, justice and political |
|Total volunteers(c) |
|* estimate has a relative standard error of 25% to 50% and should be used with caution |
|** estimate has a relative standard error greater than 50% and is considered too unreliable for general use |
|(a) Excludes persons whose only voluntary work was for the 2000 Olympic and/or Paralympic Games. |
|(b) Australian Culture and Leisure Classifications. |
|(c) Components do not add to the total as some persons undertook voluntary work for more than one organisation. |
|Source: ABS data available on request, Voluntary Work, 2000. |
The median age of sports and physical recreation volunteers was 40 years, compared with a median of 44 years for other volunteers. Almost a third (31%) of volunteers who worked for sports and physical recreation organisations were aged 35 to 44 years. By comparison, only 25% of volunteers for other organisations were in this age group. Relative to other volunteers, a higher percentage of sports volunteers were in the younger age groups, with 34% of all sports volunteers being aged under 35 years (compared with 27% for other volunteers). Conversely, there was a lower percentage of sports volunteers aged 55 years and over, compared with other volunteers.
Persons with children aged 5-14 years were more likely to be involved in a volunteer role in sports and physical recreation, compared with other volunteer roles. This is evident from the volunteer rates - 14% of persons with children aged 5-14 years had some voluntary work involvement in sports and physical recreation, compared with just 7% of persons with no children in this age group. Some 40% of sports volunteers had children aged 5-14 years, whereas 31% of other volunteers had children in this age group. It is likely that, for some parents, their volunteer involvement in sports and physical recreation is related to the sports participation of their children.
Persons undertaking voluntary work for sports and physical recreation organisations spent a total of 130 million hours working for those organisations in the year before interview. This is the equivalent of about 70,000 persons working full-time for an entire year. Sports volunteers spent an average of 98 hours per year on their sports involvements. This compares with an average of 108 hours per year spent by all volunteers. Thus, even though more persons were involved as sports volunteers relative to other kinds of organisations, they volunteered for slightly fewer hours per year on average. Nevertheless, it should be recognised that, for many sports and physical recreation organisations, volunteers may be required intensively through the main competition season (e.g. in winter for football), and so the patterns of hours may be different to that of other organisations.
The median number of hours for sports and physical recreation involvements (40 hours per year) was less than half of the mean number of hours (98 hours per year). The median indicates that 50% of sports volunteers worked less than 40 hours per year. The fact that the mean is so much higher indicates that there were some sports volunteers who worked very long hours.