The social experience of volunteering for young adult volunteers: an interpretative phenomenological analysis

Johnstone, D., Swingler, M. and Reid, K. (2017) The social experience of volunteering for young adult volunteers: an interpretative phenomenological analysis. QMiP Bulletin, 24, pp. 42-50.

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Abstract

Volunteering is known to benefit not only recipients of services but also the volunteers themselves. Such benefits are especially important in volunteering young adults, who are undergoing a period of rapid transition and psychosocial development. Whilst the impact of volunteering is reasonably well studied in student groups, there is relatively little research on young adult volunteers outside the ‘student as volunteer’ context, despite the fact that this group may present different motivations towards, and benefits from, volunteering. We conducted semi-structured interviews to explore the lived experience of young volunteers. Using the experiential qualitative approach of interpretive phenomenological analysis, prominent themes relating to the social experience of volunteering were explored. These were selected as the topic of this article and are explored under three subthemes: Social belonging; Social motivation to volunteer; Social effects of volunteering on wellbeing and development. Interpretations of the participant’s verbatim are offered and discussed in relation to identity fusion theory and positive youth development.

Item Type:Articles
Additional Information:This study was supported through a Carnegie Undergraduate Student Summer Scholarship (2016).
Status:Published
Refereed:Yes
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Reid, Dr Kate and Swingler, Dr Maxine
Authors: Johnstone, D., Swingler, M., and Reid, K.
College/School:College of Science and Engineering > School of Psychology
College of Social Sciences > School of Education > Social Justice Place and Lifelong Education
Journal Name:QMiP Bulletin
Publisher:The British Psychological Society
ISSN:2044-0820
ISSN (Online):2396-9598
Copyright Holders:Copyright © 2017 The British Psychological Society
First Published:First published in QMiP Bulletin 24: 42-50
Publisher Policy:Reproduced in accordance with the publisher copyright policy

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