Formal volunteering as a protector of health in the context of social losses

Heejung Jang, Fengyan Tang, Ernest Gonzales, Yung Soo Lee, Nancy Morrow-Howell

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


This study aims to examine the effect of the death of a family member or friend on psychological well-being, specifically the moderating effects of first-time volunteering and social network. With the sample of 354 volunteers from the Experience Corps® (EC) programs, Analysis of covariance (ANCOVA) estimated the differences in psychological well-being. Among volunteers who had experienced the death of a family member or friend, new volunteers showed significant improvement in positive affect compared to experienced volunteers. EC members gained additional social contacts through volunteering. Formal volunteering has a salutatory effect on older adults' health after the loss of family members.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)834-848
Number of pages15
JournalJournal of Gerontological Social Work
Issue number8
StatePublished - Nov 17 2018



  • Volunteering
  • negative affect
  • positive affect
  • role loss
  • social contact
  • social isolation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Sciences (miscellaneous)
  • Nursing (miscellaneous)

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