'We couldn't: Volunteering with a disability, the perspective of not-for-profit agencies

Susan Balandin*, Gwynnyth Llewellyn, Angela Dew, Liora Ballin

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

30 Citations (Scopus)


Volunteers play an important role in many organisations that deliver services for the public good. Many people within the community choose to volunteer and there is a rich literature on the reasons why people do so, as well as the benefits that accrue to individuals, organisations and the community. However, there are few reports of people with long-standing disability becoming volunteers. The aim of this study was to explore the views of volunteer coordinators in not-for-profit organisations concerning people with long-standing disability as volunteers. Seven coordinators participated in two focus groups. The participants identified opportunities for people with a disability to contribute as volunteers, but were also quick to point out significant barriers. The findings from this exploratory study suggest that if people with long-standing disability are to volunteer, consideration must be given to their individual requirements and overcoming negative community attitudes.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)131-136
Number of pages6
JournalInternational Journal of Rehabilitation Research
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2006
Externally publishedYes


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