Research Reveals Serving Others Changes the Heart

Volunteers Feel More Empathy, Have Better Understanding of Poverty

In research collected over the past four years, International Samaritan (I.S.) volunteers surveyed showed a significant change of heart in how they viewed the poor. The volunteers also showed a desire to learn more about poverty and how they could help alleviate it. Some of the findings include:

1. Nearly 90% reported feeling more empathy for the poor.

2. Prior to their I.S. service trip, 40% of the volunteers saw the poor as “a” main cause for their own poverty. After the trip, more than 90% did not view the poor as a main cause for their own poverty.

3. Nearly 95% of participants wanted to learn more about the causes and solutions of poverty, as opposed to only 18% prior to the I.S. service trip.

4. The majority of volunteers, 83%, said their I.S. experience made them want to do more volunteer work after their return to the states.

5. Nearly 70% said they learned that working with others was a necessary step in alleviating poverty.

6. More than 80% said they believed it was essential for citizens of developing countries to engage their local governments in order to change their poor circumstances, as opposed to only 21% prior to their trip.

These findings were taken from research collected between July, 2006 and June, 2010. Approximately 70% of the 227 volunteers surveyed were high school or college-age students.

To learn more about the various mission trips I.S. has scheduled in 2011, please contact Andrew Pawuk at 734-222-0701 or apawuk@intsamaritan.org.

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