A shift to volunteering in the NFP sector

Friday, August 18, 2017

Australia is a nation of volunteers. According to the latest Census results, almost one in five (19%) Australians volunteer through an organisation or group, which equates to 3.6 million Australians and is an increase of 2% since the 2011 Census. Our Australian Community Trends Report showed that this increases to 1 in 3 (34%) among Australians who give financially to charitable organisations.

There is an increasing desire of Australians to be involved in charitable organisations in an experiential way. This is particularly true among young people, who desire to go on a journey, have a tangible experience and develop a partnership, not just a transactional relationship of donating money and the charity does the work. The ability of an organisation to engage a donor on multiple levels and take them on a journey can increase loyalty and generosity towards the organisation. When Australians give of their time not just their money, there is an increasing sense of partnership and advocacy with the organisation they are engaging with.

Key motivators for volunteering

When it comes to volunteering, responsibility and satisfaction are the key motivators for volunteers with more than half (51%) indicating that they do so because of the feeling they get when they volunteer, or because they feel it is their responsibility to give back to the community (51%). Almost half (49%) are also motivated by their desire to make the world a better place.

Regular Vs. one-off

Australian charitable givers are volunteering more regularely than just a one-off. 61% of respondents indicated that they regularly give of their time, helping out once a month (24%) or at least a few times a year (37%). Two in five (39%) volunteer on a more sporadic basis with one-off activities such as Clean up Australia Day.

Time-poor students and young workers are more commonly participating in once-off activities while the older generations in retirement are more likely to volunteer very regularly for one or more charities. 35% of the Baby Boomers and 40% of Australians from the Builder generation who are charitable givers volunteer regularly for one or more charities. This compares to just 13% of Gen Y and 21% of Gen X. These young generations are more likely to participate in on-off activities instead of regularly volunteering (47% Gen Y and 41% Gen X).

How charities can engage consistent volunteers

The below mind-map shows some of the key strategies not-for-profits can use to engage consistent volunteers.


The challenge recognised by charitable organisations is the time and administration costs incurred with the management of volunteers. Some charities find it challenging to accommodate volunteers within their operations while others rely heavily on volunteers for the execution of their services or programs. Overall, the sector recognises that if it can navigate the challenges, there the countless opportunities for everyday Australians to both give back and have their own lives enriched through voluntary engagement with the not-for-profit sector.


Results are from a nationally representative survey of 1,510 Australians who give financially to charitable organisations at least once per year (80% of the total Australian population), as well as six focus groups and 14 expert interviews. Research conducted in September 2016.

Welcome to our blog...

We have a passion for research that tells a story, that can be presented visually, that brings about change and improves organisations. And we hope these resources help you know the times.

Our Social Media Sites

Facebook | McCrindle Research Social Media YouTube | McCrindle Research Social Media Twitter | McCrindle Research Social Media Flickr | McCrindle Research Social Media Pinterest | McCrindle Research Social Media Google Plus | McCrindle Research Social Media LinkedIn | McCrindle Research Social Media Mark McCrindle Slideshare

Last 150 Articles


demographic IT Specialists sydney hills who is generation z professional development property teaching census Business analysis showreel trends analyst Lower Hunter Region sun community engagement wealth and income Hornsby Shire Council media Real Estate Institute of Victoria Northern beaches Event sydney speaker brisbane dream engagement debate middle class Lower Hunter economic Assistant Store Manager rental stress report repayments census fail Jura Coffee budget office moreton bay toys TED builders capital city unemployment JOMO ideas Do It Yourself 1994 Retail Education Future Forum Christchurch infographic wall sunburnt country bus financial fears Queensland business index Australian communities teacher coffee lovers breakfast HR high density living experience housing trends future proof communicate Bathburst teachers the average aussie Northern Beaches seasons weekly earnings Hunter Valley wellbeing baby names digital holidays goals urban taskforce leadersip millionth visualisation australia urban living index shopping ashley fell business housing McCrindle Speakers social research educhat rise of local employers younger generations balance suburb Christmas presents high density social impact choice workers population milestone narcissism cold SRE Channel Seven income village media release finance hopes rain plans suburban living workplace culture Tuesday Trend SA young people money social analyst New Zealand entrepreneur education sector giving politics the great screenage education future gender marrickville national wealth demographic transformations sector wide study celebration NBRS Architecture not-for-profit communications Queensland: QLD wealth and income distribution future Wellington Kirsten Brewer VET australian communities forum goal mobile learner leader video dreaming Engineering Manager schools students social shifts father's day urban offenders sydney property market impact conference presentation Aussies Work place baby boomers results faux-ciliser intern small business internships energy real personalities spirituality the lucky country commuting royal baby annual income house prices the hills shire NSW ACF17 Australian Families google for education Sydney Hills Business Chamber summer customer divorce rate Christmas lunch Australian schools leadership global financial crisis hills shire snapshot students women Deaths earn australians staying home more daily telegraph mccrinlde optimistic australian communities trends report charities change moderators guide surname salary sydney metro focus group Australian Dream Australia Day neutral bay 24,000,000 wealth mythbusters Wodonga global generations winter pharmacies financial planning optus bondi community event bureau eliane social kate middleton growth of sydney live the dream menai sports happy holidays "know the times" school government Territory WA manly social lives millenials internship university economy winter blues debt Research Executive prince george sunny days Australian community trends Mark McCrindle Australian Communities Trends society trends Australian Home online group mortgage social life 2012 population growth Scouts non profit emerging generations culturally diverse publication chairty tuesday outsourcing Mark McCrindle in the media shopper's pick baby boom potts point HSC Northern Territory staff entrepreneurs of today sydney event australian families micro not for profit research darwin financial dreams christmas trees trends family ethnography travel commuters generations data analyst Black Friday princess charlotte waverton Kiwi coffee faith Australia street maiden tv brands Performance Sentiment Index proactive Christmas day weather research on coffee food youth unemployment panel Population Clock cash Australian Bureau of Statistics mccrindle in the media research services australian real estate men interactive challenge public speaker state 2016 census results house royal influence trades GPO do people still change their surname after marriage? selfie financial independence commute divorce future of work 2016 census hills facts social researchers child care Vocational education clothing gen z unaffordable event christianity responsive Melbourne grandparents world Generation Y professional services public transport US work-life collaborative Word Up residents spend Western Australia mover and shaker area innovation engage environmental scanning school satisfaction Adelaide parenting ABS national private wealth mccrindle research safe local future of shopping healthy future mccrindle tea futurist Andrew Duffin TED talk program newspaper education water employmee product demography shopping centre google REIV Conference charity wealth distribution social analysis states New South Wales hobart baby name predictions know the times Macquarie University seasons greetings couple poor Mount Annan-Currant Hill year 12 public speaking James Ward aged care christmas 2017 domestic average sydneysider surnames Tuesday Trends communities supply and demand life social researcher capital cities average aussie townhouses marketing forecasting language growing population new office The ABC of XYZ generation Real Estate educated donation property development dreams acf15 children baby name Generation X Gen Z Expert workplace teach baby names australia report Sydney tea pyrmont Crime Rates keynote research report purpose mining boom motivate weather stay home crows nest affordable volunteers volunteering data generation Z VIC NFP event SMSF cartodb TEDx Speaker personal growth social commentary criminal hello fresh speaker events insight 2020 casual easy rider slideshare conferences poker master McCrindle Keynote Speakers business performance in the media 1968 Australians study sydneysider community owning a home Netflix Black Friday in Australia 2017 tertiary education Canberra 40 million victoria demographics workshop gold coast environment housing affordability statistics Gen X innovative February 16 Christmas research blaxland Hills Shire Council EFF media activity hornsby System's Architect tattoos speakers pack participants cica property market school students financial friends consumer South Australia aged care puzzle curiosity happiness relational urban development fresh long weekend house price rise graphs group session grave decision employmer suburbs recap sydneycity the australian dream Christmas in Australia easter organisational culture Births vegemite professional presenters financial future sector research pack sydney market learning styles Sydney Lifestyle Study land of the middle class Maxim Accounting DIY tableau jobs Financial Planning Association of Australia workforce faux-cilising Geoff Brailey quote 2016 24 million CBD christian high density apartments anzac professional infographics leadership workshop maiden names millennials analysis living cloudy days priorities market research socialising not for profit ultimo World Water Day conference research screenage friendship nativity scene award winner Duchess of Cambridge What is food insecurity? qualitative research dessert geomapping micro apartments Tasmania optus my business awards careers Caregiver Australian Trends meals households car 2013 monarchy hunger Sydney keynote speaker case study population shifts wage work from home contiki NEETs Social Trend renter of the future meetings royal stats rule keeper marriage litter logan follow norwest faux-cilise university degree forum ACF2017 public holiday alpha learning ageing population VET sector average Australian eliane miles Black Friday Sales going out local communities REIV National Conference census results mother's day 23 million census data TDE young australians 10 years news training paying to work NT FPA Australian Population TEDx home cooking demographer sustainable affordability house price define retirement housing market typical australian cultural diversity etiquette wolloomooloo investor keynote speaker education research future of education aussie culture professional speaker Northern Beaches Christian School resilience equip future-proof work mates Charlotte sydneysiders baby ipswich conference speaker australian social research Cobbitty-Leppington TAS ACF twentyseventeen visual demographic trends baby names report christmas omnibus ACT wealth inequality trends of 2017 social enquiry Christmas season Channel 7 trend McCridle mccrindle schools mateship crime award population map Royals social trends Love cancelling event australian community trends report social commentator social issues ageing pharmacy lalor park global retail Skilling digital economy speajer youth train 2014 ACF 2016 speakers 1975 Myth data renting religion dare to dream Australian demographics trends of 2016 sector wide woolworths The Daily Edition new york times Sydney’s south west screenagers office opening Jura Australia ashley mckenzie collaboration Research Director media commentary jobs of the future parents research data low density online shopping learn huffington post wedding Elderslie-Harrington park DESTEL travelling mythbusting holiday vegetarian survey data visualisation #censusfail researcher perth rich baby name trends growth office space royal family NBRS church national crime rates care support January 26th urban living forecast census 2016 PSI presentations CPI McCrindle Speaker Christmas day medicine shbc thought leadership transport brand authenticity cost megatrends entrepreneurial global technology Sydney population year 7 socialites investment Valentine’s Day overcast gig gen alpha emerging technologies food bank identity Australian Census ferry English 2015 apartments home owner list entertainment daily commute society buildings emerging trends Aussie cost of living story career property price click Merry Christmas Australia Day 2017 FOMO city future proofing organisations focus groups housing growth greatness infographic apartment sentiments post rationalism cars investing local community Wagga Wagga home ownership generational trends the changing face of internet donate work employment earnings volunteering food insecurity rising house prices rent wages lifestyle culture increasing densification high school names education future report mentor research visualisation tips world youth day fears staying in resource student skills relevant earning volunteer trend tuesday brand experience storytelling household Gen Y Christmas data in depth interviews generation alpha Res Vis Willowdale thrive ACT Report deloitte marriages nfp networking 1980 Financial Planning Association cancelling plans teleworking survey design social change presentation SMART gig economy consumerism Christmas Stats ease of travel cultural diveristy social media changing face of sydney Financial Planning Week New Zeland communication cancel plans insights the hills belief