Volunteers’ psychological condition during the war in Ukraine – a survey
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Katedra i Klinika Psychiatrii Dorosłych, Śląski Uniwersytet Medyczny w Katowicach
Studenckie Koło Naukowe przy Katedrze i Klinice Psychiatrii Dorosłych, Śląski Uniwersytet Medyczny w Katowicach
Submission date: 2023-01-04
Final revision date: 2023-07-07
Acceptance date: 2023-08-20
Online publication date: 2023-10-30
Publication date: 2023-10-30
Corresponding author
Patryk Rodek   

Katedra i Klinika Psychiatrii Dorosłych, Śląski Uniwersytet Medyczny w Katowicach
Our goal was to fill a literature gap regarding the impact of volunteering on volunteers’ mental health.

Using social media platform “Facebook” volunteers were asked to fill in a self-developed research questionnaire concerning their well-being. The link to the survey remained open from April to May 2022. Overall, 867 participants’ responses were analyzed, 703 were included. Respondents were divided into three groups according to how volunteering had affected their well-being. Subsequently two groups were extracted: volunteers operating in Ukraine and those hosting refugees at home. In each of these groups impact of volunteering on volunteers’ well-being was examined.

45.10% of participants reported volunteering has positively affected their overall well-being, in 35.56% it had no impact and in 19.35% affected them negatively. Somatic symptoms of anxiety manifested in 11.10% and were more severe in 8.25%. 14.10% of participants reported a greater need of using psychoactive substances. Among volunteers who hosted refugees 52.23% felt increased tension and irritability. 18% of volunteers operating in Ukraine reported a need to see a psychiatrist or a psychologist.

Impact of volunteering on one’s mental well-being ranged from positive to detrimental. Initial mood had significant impact on mental well-being after volunteering. The phenomenon of indirect trauma among non-professional volunteers is not sufficiently explored yet and requires further research.

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