National and Special Reports

Civic Health and Unemployment II: The Case Builds (2012)

States with high social cohesion had unemployment rates two percentage points lower than their less connected and trusting counterparts, even when controlling for demographics and economic factors. (“Social cohesion” is defined as trusting neighbors, talking to and helping neighbors, and socializing with family and friends).

A county with one extra nonprofit per 1,000 people in 2005 would have half a percentage point less unemployment by 2009. (specifically organizations classified by the IRS and National Center for Charitable Statistics as “Public & Social benefits” and “Mutual and Member benefits”)

For individuals who held jobs in 2008, the odds of becoming unemployed were cut in half if they lived in a community with many nonprofit organizations rather than one with a few nonprofits, even if the two communities were otherwise similar.

The ten states that scored the best on both nonprofit density and social cohesion had unemployment rates of 6.5 percent in 2010, compared with 10.8 percent unemployment in the lowest-scoring states.

Volunteering as a Pathway to Employment (CNCS)

  • Research from the Corporation for National and Community Service (CNCS), entitled “Volunteering as a Pathway to Employment,” provides compelling empirical evidence establishing an association between volunteering and employment.
  • Volunteers have a 27 percent higher likelihood of finding a job after being out of work than non-volunteers.Volunteers without a high school diploma have a 51 percent higher likelihood of finding employment
  • Volunteers living in rural areas have a 55 percent higher likelihood of finding employment.

Latino Report (2015)

  • 35% of Latinos vs. 59% of non-Latinos trusted most or all of the people in their neighborhood.
  • 16% of Latinos vs. 27% of non-Latinos regularly volunteer.
  • In the 2012 Presidential election, 48% of Latino eligible voters turned out to vote, verses 67% of African Americans and 64% of whites.
  • Young Latino Internet users use social networking sites at higher rates (80%) than non-Latino whites (70%) and African Americans (75%).
  • Lower income Latino youth are more likely than their higher income Latino counterparts to use social media.
  • Education is the strongest predictor of civic participation, and education attainment among Latino youth is improving. Since 1993, the Latino dropout rate has been cut in half (33% vs. 14%)

Veterans Report (2015)

  • Veteran volunteers serve an average of 160 hours annually – the equivalent of four full workweeks. Non-veteran volunteers serve about 25% fewer hours annually.
  • 7% of veterans are involved in civic groups (versus 5.8% of non-veterans).
  • 5% of veterans under 50 vote in local elections, versus 48.7% of non-veterans under 50.
  • Veterans are more likely to fill leadership roles in community organizations, attend community meetings and fix problems in their neighborhoods.
  • Compared to non-veterans, veterans are more trusting of their neighbors. 62.5% of veterans trust “most or all of [their] neighbors” compared to 55.1% of non-veterans. Veterans are also more likely to frequently talk with and do favors for their neighbors.

Millennials (2013)

  • Millennials represent a potent civic and political force – comprising a national voting bloc of 21.3% of eligible voters who are playing a critical role in our democracy and driving community action nationwide;
  • Education is strongly connected to civic engagement—some indicators show a college graduate is four or five times more likely to engage than someone without a high school diploma.
  • Some surprising trends exist in Millennial civic health. While engagement typically increases with age, 22-25 year olds have lower levels of social cohesion and volunteerism than older or younger peers. And, while education predicts most forms of engagement, young people without a college education are more likely to help their neighbors on a regular basis.

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