Voluntary work for an organisation or group (VOLWP)
This variable records people who spent time doing unpaid voluntary work for an organisation or group in the twelve months prior to Census night.
Unpaid voluntary work can include:
- assisting at organised events and with sports organisations
- helping with organised school events and activities
- assisting in churches, hospitals, nursing homes and charities
- other kinds of volunteer work (e.g. emergency services, serving on a committee for a club, etc.).
Organisations or groups can include:
- sporting teams
- youth groups
- religious organisations.
Unpaid voluntary work for an organisation or group excludes work done:
- as part of paid employment
- in a family business
- to qualify for a government benefit
- to obtain an educational qualification
- due to a community or court order.
Persons aged 15 years and over
Not a volunteer
Number of categories: 5
Not applicable (@) category comprises:
- Persons aged under 15 years
Question(s) from the Census form
In the last twelve months did the person spend any time doing unpaid voluntary work for an organisation or group?
How this variable is created
The variable is recorded directly from the voluntary work question on the Census form. The responses to this question are recorded automatically from mark box responses, so the risk of errors during data processing are minimal. If both responses are recorded, the ‘Yes’ is accepted. The ‘No’ response will be rejected.
History and changes
The question on voluntary work for an organisation or group was first asked in 2006.
No changes have been made for 2021.
Data use considerations
Unpaid voluntary work for an organisation or group may include care of a child or care of a person with disability, a long-term illness or problems with old age. Unpaid child care (CHCAREP) and Unpaid assistance to a person with a disability, health condition or due to old age (UNCAREP) both exclude unpaid voluntary work for an organisation or group.
Care should be taken when comparing Census data on Voluntary work for an organisation or group with information from other surveys and publications. Definitions can differ between different statistical collections and may therefore not be comparable.