Volunteering in Canada: Challenges and opportunities during the COVID-19 pandemic

Stats in brief: 45-28-0001202000100037


Older generations are more likely than younger generations to be self-isolating and limiting their volunteer activities during the COVID-19 pandemic. In addition, the pandemic has had a series of impacts that vary depending on the type of volunteer organization. Physical distancing and necessary health protection measures quickly affected the provision of face-to-face services, events and meetings involving gatherings of people. At the same time, recent media reports have highlighted many examples of individuals directly assisting others, including picking-up and dropping-off groceries and other supplies in the community, cooking meals, sewing non-medical masks, sharing information and providing emotional support via online social media platforms.

Using data from the 2018 General Social Survey on Giving, Volunteering and Participating (GSS GVP), this article documents how people of various generations contribute to volunteering in Canada. Although these data predate the COVID-19 pandemic, they provide an overview of the challenges and opportunities of volunteering in the current situation.

Issue Number: 2020001
Author(s): Fournier-Savard, Patric; Hahmann, Tara; du Plessis, Valerie
FormatRelease dateMore information
HTMLJune 26, 2020
PDFJune 26, 2020