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Voluntary work falls out of favour

Swiss people are becoming less and less willing to volunteer, according to a study published on Monday by the Federal Statistics Office.

The proportion of people donating their time to organisations or clubs declined by three per cent to 24 per cent between 1997 and 2007.

The results of the study, published ahead of International Volunteer Day on Friday, found that Swiss men had become less willing than women to give up their free time.

There were 4.2 per cent fewer men volunteering in 2007 as there were ten years earlier, compared with only a 1.1 per cent drop for women.

Informal voluntary work such as helping out neighbours or looking after other children declined from 23 to 21 per cent since 2000.

The Statistics Office said men were more likely to contribute to organisations and clubs while women are more engaged in informal work in their neighbourhoods.

Regular volunteers donated on average half a day a week of their time.

However, there are regional differences. Nearly 30 per cent of Swiss Germans volunteer – nine per cent more than Swiss French and 16 per cent more than Swiss Italians.


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