Volunteering in any capacity is good for you and will help you stay young at heart. Volunteering with young people, however, is especially good for this purpose. Volunteering offers numerous benefits for both physical and mental well-being, which can contribute to a youthful outlook on life.

Researchers haven’t identified exactly why, but there is something about being around young people (defined as 25 and under) regularly that seems to slow down the aging process and make older adults feel younger.

Maybe all of that extra energy is transferred from younger people to older ones! Regardless of the reason, consider volunteering with young people.

Here’s how volunteering can help us stay young at heart:

  1. Sense of Purpose: Volunteering gives individuals a sense of purpose and fulfillment, which can help combat feelings of stagnation or aging. Having meaningful activities to engage in can keep one mentally stimulated and motivated.
  2. Social Interaction: Volunteering often involves working with others toward a common goal, fostering social connections and reducing feelings of loneliness or isolation. Regular social interaction has been linked to better mental health and a more positive outlook on life.
  3. Physical Activity: Many volunteer opportunities involve physical activity, whether it’s outdoor work, assisting with events, or engaging in community projects. Regular physical activity is essential for maintaining physical health and can contribute to increased energy levels and vitality.
  4. Learning and Growth: Volunteering provides opportunities for learning new skills, gaining knowledge, and challenging oneself. Engaging in continuous learning and personal growth can keep the mind sharp and agile, contributing to a youthful mindset.
  5. Stress Reduction: Helping others and focusing on the needs of others can provide a welcome distraction from one’s own worries and stressors. Volunteering has been shown to reduce stress levels and promote relaxation, which can have a positive impact on overall well-being.
  6. Happiness and Satisfaction: Giving back to the community and making a positive difference in the lives of others can evoke feelings of happiness, satisfaction, and gratitude. These positive emotions can counteract feelings of cynicism or disillusionment, fostering a more youthful and optimistic outlook on life.
  7. Cognitive Benefits: Engaging in volunteer work that requires problem-solving, decision-making, and critical thinking can help maintain cognitive function and prevent cognitive decline associated with aging.
  8. Sense of Connection and Belonging: Volunteering can strengthen one’s sense of connection to their community and create a feeling of belonging. Feeling connected and supported by others can promote resilience and a sense of optimism, contributing to a youthful mindset.

What kind of volunteer work is available? To start with the obvious one, educational help is always needed. This would mean tutoring kids and college students who are behind in their studies or at risk of failing.

Every community needs volunteer tutors at schools, community centers, and other places. You have to fill out an application and pass a background check, but you don’t have to be a retired teacher.

Mentoring young people is another great option. Not every kid or young adult has someone, let alone an entire family, to help them grow into adulthood. Organizations like Big Brothers Big Sisters are dedicated to matching at-risk youth with adults and seniors willing to mentor them.

Another option is to volunteer to help out with sports. Most kids, teen, and college-age sporting leagues depend on a legion of volunteers for coaching, refereeing, setting up and taking down equipment, and a host of other activities. No matter what sport is your favorite, you can probably find a group that needs your help.

Do you have grandchildren? Why not volunteer at their school? All schools need adults to volunteer everywhere from the cafeteria to the library to the theater. They are usually glad to have grandparents willing to help.

You could also volunteer at local arts or music organizations, or at any local museum that caters to a lot of young people. These groups always need volunteers. You could be a tour guide, lecturer, or even work in the gift shop.

Children’s hospitals always need volunteers. Libraries often do too. Local festivals and fairs are usually run by volunteers and are often directed at young people.

Naturally, these are just a few of the many opportunities for volunteering with young people. If this option interests you, you’re sure to find plenty of other opportunities if you care to look. Helping young people is a great way for you to stay young at heart while also doing good in the world.

Volunteering offers a range of physical, mental, and emotional benefits that can help individuals stay young at heart by promoting a sense of purpose, social interaction, physical activity, learning, stress reduction, happiness, cognitive function, and connection to others and the community.


By continuing to use the WE Magazine for women website, you will be agreeing to Terms and Conditions, Privacy Policy and use of cookies while using this website.