IS Announces New Estimate for Value of Volunteer Time

(WASHINGTON, April 3, 2012)—Independent Sector announces that the 2011 estimate for the value of a volunteer hour has reached $21.79, a 43-cent increase from 2010.

The release of this important figure comes before National Volunteer Week, which takes place April 15 –21, 2012. This week is about inspiring, recognizing and encouraging people to seek out imaginative ways to engage in their communities.

"We know how critical this value is to the staff and volunteers who give their time to improve life for others," said Diana Aviv, president and CEO of Independent Sector. "America’s remarkable tradition of giving back is a reflection of our care and commitment to making the world a better place. IS supports and celebrates all the dedicated volunteers who selflessly give their time and expertise to help others."

The value of volunteer time provides one way to measure the impact millions of individuals make with each hour they donate to make a difference. IS also updated the breakdown for the value of volunteer time in states and territories in 2010, which can be found on here. Please note that 2010 is the latest year for which state-by-state numbers are available. There is a lag of almost one year in the government's release of state level data which explains why the state volunteering values are one year behind the national value.

Nonprofits employ approximately 12.9 million workers - almost 10 percent of the American work force – and account for about 5.2 percent of GDP.  According to the Corporation for National & Community Service, about 62.8 million Americans, or 26.3 percent of the adult population, gave 8.1 billion hours of volunteer service worth $173 billion in 2010. Estimates for 2011 will be released this summer.

In addition, registration is now open for GameChangers, the 2012 Independent Sector Annual Conference, which will take place in San Francisco on Nov 11-12. As our theme suggests, we will be using the conference as a platform to celebrate the people, events and ideas that will ignite new thinking about what it takes to shape a strong and healthy future for the charitable sector and the communities we serve. In fact Greg Baldwin, president of VolunteerMatch, will be conducting a session about "GameChangers" in volunteering during Connections, an attendee-led portion of the conference program on November 11.

To access the numbers for every state and learn more about the hourly value of volunteer time, visit


Independent Sector is a leadership network of 600 nonprofits, foundations, and corporate giving programs committed to advancing the common good. Our nonpartisan coalition leads, strengthens, and mobilizes the sector; we advocate for public policies that fortify our communities; and we create unparalleled resources so staff, boards, and volunteers can further their missions and increase their impact.

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