Influence of voluntary work intervention on the mood status of older volunteers
The aim of this study was to investigate the positive and depressive mood changes in older volunteers after a three-month voluntary work intervention through a one-group experimental research design. The participants were drawn from the Volunteering, access to Outdoor activities and Wellbeing in older people (VOW) project. The participants were recently retired group, aged 50 and above (N=47, 42 female). Prior training sessions were arranged for the participants before the intervention period. Pre and post assessment of depressive mood was measured through applying the original form of Center for Epidemiologic Studies Depression Scale (CES-D) and positive mood was measure through the positive affect items of the CED-D sub-scale. Data was analyzed with descriptive statistics, paired t test, general linear model-repeated measure and multiple response frequency analysis. Our main finding observed a non-significant change in positive and depressive mood in the pre-post intervention period. At both measurement levels, the participants had an high level of positive mood and low level of depressive symptoms. Alternative objectives manifested a non-influence of previous voluntary work experiences on mood changes and “meeting new peoples, help others and improve their mood status” were the top motivation factors influencing older adults towards voluntary work. Further experimental research is required to investigate the relationship between voluntary work and mood changes. ...
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