Age-Related Differences in Public Library Volunteers' Motivations for Volunteering

by Whitt, William N

Abstract (Summary)
This study employs a functional perspective in assessing the motives of volunteers for

volunteering in public libraries. A 30-item survey instrument, the Volunteer Functions

Inventory (VFI), was completed by 28 volunteers at three branches of the Wake County

Public Library system to determine whether motivations varied according to age.

Although the intent of the study was to compare three age groups of volunteers (under 20

years old, 20 to 55 years old, and over 55 years old), too few surveys were returned to

allow such a comparison. The most surveys were returned from the oldest age group and

results from this group are consistent with past research in that older volunteers tended to

be motivated heavily by their values and far less so by career concerns. Suggestions for

improving future research with public library volunteers are given along with information

on how to improve volunteer outreach and recruitment.

Bibliographical Information:

Advisor:Evelyn Daniel

School:University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

School Location:USA - North Carolina

Source Type:Master's Thesis

Keywords:surveys volunteers public libraries north carolina


Date of Publication:11/15/2006

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