America has seen a dramatic decrease in civic engagement, down another 7 percent in the last two years. According to Americorps, which studies such things, only 19.9 percent of New Jersey residents volunteered in the last couple of years, tying with New York for last place nationwide. The organization also found that only 18 percent of New Jersey residents are members of an organization (such as a congregation). Pretty low numbers, indeed.
The Ethical Culture Society of Bergen County does have a large pool of volunteers, more than probably any other Ethical Society, but many worry that those stepping up to volunteer are not keeping pace with those who are either aging out or feeling more than a little burnt out. Why is volunteering declining in America, who is volunteering, and what types of activities have seen the largest increase in volunteer rates? These questions are more than philosophical; for a movement founded on “constructive moral engagement,” getting people to act is a central part of our way of life. Come to the meetinghouse and engage with Leader Curt Collier in conversation as we explore visions of new avenues of engagement for our 2023-2024 season.
This Gathering is at the meetinghouse and on Zoom. The Zoom link will be in the Focus newsletter and may be obtained by emailing [email protected]