A report, The New Alchemy, from research consultancy nfpSynergy, also found that the number of men volunteering is now higher than the number of women.
The report said that schools and colleges were encouraging volunteering to enhance students’ CVs, to help them gain work experience, to build social skills and to build networks which might be useful in the future. The study states: “Increasingly, employability is regularly cited as one of the reasons that youth volunteering has increased so dramatically.”
When asked if volunteering had a positive effect on the career opportunities of young people, 87 per cent of employers agreed.
The study revealed that overall levels of volunteering among the British public have increased significantly, with one in four now saying they have volunteered for a charity, organisation or local community in the last three months. Many respondents said the reason they volunteered was because of the impact of the government’s austerity measures.
The study of 1,000 Britons found that the numbers of young volunteers have continued to rise, with a third of 16 to 24-year-olds stating that they had given their time freely, more than double the level in 2005. Over the last three years an average of 31 per cent of young people gave their time making them the most likely age group to volunteer.