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View of volunteering doesn’t match action

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While almost all Americans believe it is important to encourage youth to volunteer their time, fewer than half give any hours themselves, with many citing a lack of time, a new study says.

And of those who responded to the survey, sponsored by McDonald’s, slightly more than half say they would rather spend their discretionary time reading, watching TV or visiting in-laws than volunteering their time.

Currently, 45 percent of Americans volunteer, the study says, with more than four in 10 of those who give their time saying they are driven by a personal connection to a nonprofit, and slightly fewer citing involvement in their communities.

Fewer than one in 10 volunteer because their employers ask them to.

While almost half the respondents say a lack of time is barrier to volunteering, almost two in 10 say they don’t know of a charity they are interested in, and almost one in 10 say they don’t know how to get involved.

McDonald’s commissioned the survey in honor of National Volunteer Month, in April, and to recognize opportunities to volunteer through its Ronald McDonald House Charities.

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