Individual differences in quality of life, prosocial personality and motives in senior volunteers

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Cannon, Sinéad
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BA (Hons) in Psychology
Dublin Business School
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The health and wellbeing benefits of volunteering for those aged over fifty-five are well-supported by empirical studies (Anderson et al., 2014, Okun, Yeung & Brown, 2013, van Willigen, 2000). Furthermore, senior volunteers represent a valuable economic resource (Central Statistics Office, 2015). The aim of the current study was to delve deeper into individual differences in the relationship between prosocial behaviour, motive and quality of life in a sample of 102 active, senior volunteers. The cross-sectional, quantitative study achieved its aims by collecting data with an online questionnaire and conducting one-way ANOVAs and multiple regression analyses. The two hypotheses that were supported found quality of life (health and flourishing) predicted prosocial personality. Specifically, psychological flourishing was a significant predictor of both factors of prosocial personality, other-oriented empathy and helpfulness. Findings may have implications for positive aging strategies and may be relevant to Irish voluntary organisations and their people management policies.