Study Finds Baby Boom Generation Primed to Give and Volunteer More

A study released by Independent Sector and AARP analyzes the giving and volunteering patterns of the baby boom population and finds enormous potential for Americans over the age of fifty to contribute time and money to the nonprofit sector.

Experience at Work: Volunteering and Giving Among Americans 50 and Over compares the philanthropic habits of Americans still in their working years, age 50-64, with those of retirees age 65 or older. According to the report, the younger population is more likely to have graduated from college, volunteered in their youth, and watched their parents volunteer — all indicators of high civic involvement. Over the next ten years, the over-50 population in the U.S. is expected to increase by 18.3 million people, including some 13.9 million people between the ages of 50 and 64. Because most of these individuals will still be working, they are expected to become the most generous givers and have more time for volunteer activities as they approach retirement age.

"Nonprofits would be well served to customize their approach to recruit these volunteers and demonstrate the value of their service to the individual volunteer and organization he or she serves," said Independent Sector president and CEO Diana Aviv. "If Experience at Work gives us one recommendationit is that nonprof, it is that nonprofits ought to seize this opportunity to engage older Americans."

The report is the fifth in the Independent Sector Giving and Volunteering Signature Series, which is supported by the MetLife Foundation. To read key findings or order the report, visit: