Volunteering: Good for the heart and the brain as well as for your community’s parks and coastlines

heart of the community

[clearboth] Ringling College works with Friends of Sarasota County Parks on Summer Projects

A group of researchers studied more than 70,000 seniors, looking at health details and volunteering. It seems that, as the report says,


 As it turns out, lending a helping hand may significantly reduce a person’s mortality risk: Even after adjusting for several factors, including previous health complications, the study concluded that rates of mortality dropped 24% among those who volunteered regularly.

What’s behind this death-defying health boost? When you help strangers in need, the ensuing feelings of usefulness and altruism might cause your brain to produce more oxytocin and progesterone-good-vibe chemicals that curb stress and reduce harmful inflammation, explains study author Morris Okun, PhD, a professor of psychology at Arizona State University. 


Besides helping with mood and a sense of purpose, volunteering can also boost your brain:
“Volunteering keeps people mentally active; it keeps their weight in check, their heart healthy, and their memory sharp,” says Sharon Brangman, MD, chief of geriatrics at the SUNY Upstate Medical University at Syracuse. “Essentially, it’s a drug-free way to keep you feeling young.”  
According to one report, volunteering can lower the chance of Alzheimer’s by 47%.[clearboth]
Join an organization. In fact, why not Join the Friends? Here’s how.[clearboth]

The Friends also strongly supports these volunteer efforts:[clearboth]


Sarasota County Volunteers


You’d Be Perfect For This


SRQ Volunteen


IFAS grant oak park master gard