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Helping oneself by helping others: evaluation of a service credit banking demonstration



Helping oneself by helping others: evaluation of a service credit banking demonstration



Journal of Aging and Social Policy 4(3-4): 111-138



Between 1987 and 1990, the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation funded six service credit banking demonstration programs among the elderly in which participants delivered services in return for credits, entitling them to later service. This evaluation of the demonstrations found that these six sites successfully attracted elders for the delivery of household support services to a relatively old, frail population with potentially limited social networks. Evidence on the significance of the "credit" in attracting volunteers was mixed, but the programs have attracted new volunteers, and have not substituted for other volunteer activities. Program development has entailed considerable staff investment in volunteer support; programs are better understood as community membership organizations than as mechanical exchanges.

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Accession: 046231598

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PMID: 10186814


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