Donating & Volunteering: Important for the Community, and It Turns out Your Health!

By Shelby Porter, Americorp VISTA Tillamook County Wellness, Tillamook County Community Health Centers
We are fortunate to live in a community that has grown and supported each other over the years. Charitable donations and time spent volunteering play a significant role in our state and county. In fact, the Giving in Oregon Guide reports that in 2014 Oregonians donated 2.28% of their adjusted gross income, and in Tillamook county the total contribution was $3,712,349 to charitable causes. These resources go a long way to helping local non-profits provide services that enhance the well-being of our residents. While many nonprofit organizations rely on donations of time and monetary value, it turns out that research shows making charitable donations and volunteering have significant health benefits for the donor as well!

According to a study published in the BMC Public Health Journal, health benefits of volunteering include better mental and physical health, an increase in life satisfaction and happiness, and lower symptoms of depression. In addition, the Cleveland Clinic notes decrease in blood pressure and an increase in life expectancy as related health benefits to giving. Along with health benefits, volunteering and making donations also creates a larger sense of self, an increased feeling of belonging to your community through your charitable efforts.

Be on the lookout for the annual Tillamook County Giving Guide – a guide to support our local nonprofits and keep supporting our community! The Giving Guide was sent to every address in the county, and is available at a variety of locations throughout Tillamook County, and on the Tillamook County Pioneer website at

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