Resolve to Volunteer in 2014: Top Five Reasons

AmeriCorps Members Help Fulfill Red Cross Mission
The Red Cross needs and values its generous volunteers who help fulfill its mission every day, 365 days a year.

As the year comes to a close, many people are refining their New Year’s resolutions and reflecting on what went right in 2013 and what they want to change in 2014. ranks managing stress and volunteering as some of the most popular resolutions.

Serving the Red Cross can help people accomplish both goals—and much more—with one shot. Here are the top five reasons to volunteer for the Red Cross in 2014:

5. Improved health and well-being.

A 2007 report from the Corporation for National and Community Service compiled research showing that volunteering contributed to better health, a sense of purpose, life satisfaction and lower mortality rates. A 2013 report from United Health Group found that of those surveyed:

  • 76 percent said volunteering made them feel healthier
  • 94 percent said volunteering improves their mood
  • 78 percent said volunteering lowers their stress levels
  • 4. You’re needed.

    More than 90 percent of the Red Cross work force is composed of volunteers. Every year, the Red Cross responds to about 70,000 disasters, collects approximately 5.7 million units of blood, teaches 6.5 million people lifesaving skills, reconnects nearly 1,000 families separated by war or disaster, and provides nearly 400,000 services to military members, their families and veterans. The Red Cross needs and values its generous volunteers who help fulfill its mission every day, 365 days a year.

    3. The Red Cross offers a variety of ways to get involved.

    Whether you’re interested in supporting blood drives, serving at a military hospital, helping with special events, teaching CPR classes, providing staff support or responding to a house fire in the middle of the night, the Red Cross offers a variety of ways to volunteer.

    And if you’re not quite ready to commit to being a volunteer but want to help out when a disaster strikes your community, download the Team Red Cross app. Through the app, people can sign up to help, get an overview on basic tasks and receive notifications about Red Cross disaster volunteer opportunities in their community.

    2. Be a part of saving lives.

    Bre Dumke’s life was saved because her best friend Julie had Red Cross lifesaving training. When the Goldbach Ehmer twins were born, they needed blood transfusions to survive. Listen to more stories about how the Red Cross has changed and saved lives.

    1. Volunteer satisfaction with the Red Cross is high.

    In a survey of more than 16,000 Red Cross volunteers, nearly 80 percent agreed that their volunteer experience had been “excellent.”

    “I absolutely love what I’m doing. Love it, love it, love it,” said volunteer Maria Fitzgerald of Florida.

    “The Red Cross empowers ordinary people to do extraordinary things,” said volunteer Elaine Lyerly of Belmont, North Carolina.

    “Through my volunteering, I get to provide people with a moment of comfort during their most vulnerable time,” said volunteer Shirley Stinson of the Scenic Bluffs chapter in Wisconsin.

    Hear what other volunteers say about their Red Cross experience.

    Start Volunteering in 2014

    Contact your local Red Cross, or visit the Volunteer Opportunities section of the website for information on becoming a Red Cross volunteer.

    About the American Red Cross:
    The American Red Cross shelters, feeds and provides emotional support to victims of disasters; supplies about 40 percent of the nation's blood; teaches skills that save lives; provides international humanitarian aid; and supports military members and their families. The Red Cross is a not-for-profit organization that depends on volunteers and the generosity of the American public to perform its mission. For more information, please visit or visit us on Twitter at @RedCross.