Environmental volunteer well-being: Managers' perception and actual well-being of volunteers

Authors: Kragh, Stafford, R., Curtin, S. and Diaz, A.

http://eprints.bournemouth.ac.uk/24969/

https://f1000research.com/articles/5-2679/v1

Journal: F1000Research

Volume: 5

Issue: 2679

Publisher: F1000Research

ISSN: 2046-1402

DOI: 10.12688/f1000research.10016.1

Environmental volunteering is known to be able to increase well-being but environmental volunteer well-being has rarely been compared to participant well-being associated with other types of volunteering or nature-based activities. This paper aims to use a multidimensional approach to well-being to explore the immediately experienced and later remembered well-being of environmental volunteers and to compare this to the increased well-being of participants in other types of nature-based activities and volunteering. Furthermore, it aims to compare volunteer managers’ perception of their volunteers’ well-being with the self-reported well-being of the volunteers. Onsite surveys were conducted of practical conservation and biodiversity monitoring volunteers as well as their control groups, walkers and fieldwork students, respectively, to measure general well-being before their nature-based activity and activity-related well-being immediately after their activity. Online surveys of current, former and potential volunteers and volunteer managers in environmental volunteering and other types of volunteering measured remembered volunteering-related well-being and volunteer managers’ perceptions of their volunteers’ well-being. Data were analysed based on Seligman’s multidimensional PERMA (‘Positive emotion’, ‘Engagement’, ‘positive Relationship’, ‘Meaning’, ‘Achievement’) model of well-being. Factor analysis recovered three of the five PERMA elements, ‘engagement’, ‘relationship’ and ‘meaning’, as well as ‘negative emotion’ and ‘health’ as factors. Environmental volunteering significantly improved positive elements and significantly decreased negative elements of participants’ immediate well-being and it did so more than walking or student fieldwork did. Even remembering their volunteering up to six months later, volunteers rated their volunteering-related well-being higher than volunteers rated their well-being generally in life. However, volunteering was not found to have an effect on overall mean well-being generally in life. Volunteer managers did not perceive the significant increase in well-being that volunteers reported during volunteering. Multidimensional well-being assessments offer the potential for volunteer organisations and managers to more systematically understand, support and enhance volunteer well-being.

This data was imported from PubMed:

Authors: Kragh, G., Stafford, R., Curtin, S. and Diaz, A.

http://eprints.bournemouth.ac.uk/24969/

Journal: F1000Res

Volume: 5

Pages: 2679

ISSN: 2046-1402

DOI: 10.12688/f1000research.10016.1

Background: Environmental volunteering can increase well-being, but environmental volunteer well-being has rarely been compared to participant well-being associated with other types of volunteering or nature-based activities. This paper aims to use a multidimensional approach to well-being to explore the immediately experienced and later remembered well-being of environmental volunteers and to compare this to the increased well-being of participants in other types of nature-based activities and volunteering. Furthermore, it aims to compare volunteer managers' perceptions of their volunteers' well-being with the self-reported well-being of the volunteers. Methods: Onsite surveys were conducted of practical conservation and biodiversity monitoring volunteers, as well as their control groups (walkers and fieldwork students, respectively), to measure general well-being before their nature-based activity and activity-related well-being immediately after their activity. Online surveys of current, former and potential volunteers and volunteer managers measured remembered volunteering-related well-being and managers' perceptions of their volunteers' well-being. Data were analysed based on Seligman's multidimensional PERMA ('positive emotion', 'engagement', 'positive relationship', 'meaning', 'achievement') model of well-being. Factor analysis recovered three of the five PERMA elements, 'engagement', 'relationship' and 'meaning', as well as 'negative emotion' and 'health' as factors. Results: Environmental volunteering significantly improved positive elements and significantly decreased negative elements of participants' immediate well-being, and it did so more than walking or student fieldwork. Even remembering their volunteering up to six months later, volunteers rated their volunteering-related well-being higher than volunteers rated their well-being generally in life. However, volunteering was not found to have an effect on overall mean well-being generally in life. Volunteer managers did not perceive the significant increase in well-being that volunteers reported. Conclusions: This study showed how environmental volunteering immediately improved participants' well-being, even more than other nature-based activities. It highlights the benefit of regarding well-being as a multidimensional construct to more systematically understand, support and enhance volunteer well-being.

This source preferred by Rick Stafford, Gitte Kragh, Anita Diaz and Susanna Curtin

This data was imported from Scopus:

Authors: Kragh, G., Stafford, R., Curtin, S. and Diaz, A.

http://eprints.bournemouth.ac.uk/24969/

Journal: F1000Research

Volume: 5

eISSN: 1759-796X

ISSN: 2046-1402

DOI: 10.12688/f1000research.10016.1

© 2016 Kragh G et al. Background: Environmental volunteering can increase well-being, but environmental volunteer well-being has rarely been compared to participant well-being associated with other types of volunteering or nature-based activities. This paper aims to use a multidimensional approach to well-being to explore the immediately experienced and later remembered well-being of environmental volunteers and to compare this to the increased well-being of participants in other types of nature-based activities and volunteering. Furthermore, it aims to compare volunteer managers' perceptions of their volunteers' well-being with the self-reported well-being of the volunteers. Methods: Onsite surveys were conducted of practical conservation and biodiversity monitoring volunteers, as well as their control groups (walkers and fieldwork students, respectively), to measure general well-being before their nature-based activity and activity-related well-being immediately after their activity. Online surveys of current, former and potential volunteers and volunteer managers measured remembered volunteering-related well-being and managers' perceptions of their volunteers' well-being. Data were analysed based on Seligman's multidimensional PERMA ('positive emotion', 'engagement', 'positive relationship', 'meaning', 'achievement') model of well-being. Factor analysis recovered three of the five PERMA elements, 'engagement', 'relationship' and 'meaning', as well as 'negative emotion' and 'health' as factors. Results: Environmental volunteering significantly improved positive elements and significantly decreased negative elements of participants' immediate well-being, and it did so more than walking or student fieldwork. Even remembering their volunteering up to six months later, volunteers rated their volunteering-related well-being higher than volunteers rated their well-being generally in life. However, volunteering was not found to have an effect on overall mean well-being generally in life. Volunteer managers did not perceive the significant increase in well-being that volunteers reported. Conclusions: This study showed how environmental volunteering immediately improved participants' well-being, even more than other nature-based activities. It highlights the benefit of regarding well-being as a multidimensional construct to more systematically understand, support and enhance volunteer well-being.

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