A descriptive study of the volunteer network within the Area Agencies on Aging in the Commonwealth of Virginia

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Virginia Tech

Two hundred two volunteers and l8 volunteer coordinators within the 25 Area Agencies on Aging (AAA) in the Commonwealth of Virginia responded to two separate questionnaires regarding the AAA volunteer network. The survey revealed that the volunteer sample was predominately female, white, married, Protestant, retired, educated beyond high school, and that incomes for over 60% of the sample were below $20,000. Both volunteer and coordinator samples stated that the home delivered meals program involved the highest number of volunteers. The average time spent volunteering was 4.9 hours a week. The economic value of the volunteers' contributions was determined to be over $4 million within the fiscal year just ended, based on the minimum of $3.35. The volunteers reported having been recruited to volunteer in the AAA by friends, newspapers, and senior citizens' centers. Both samples agreed that meetings were the most often used orientation method. Training was most often done on-the-job according to both samples. The majority of coordinators reported using an informal type of evaluation for volunteers in the AAAs.