Self-conception and volunteering: The mediational role of motivations

Maria Grazia Monaci, Luca Scacchi, Monica Giolitti Monteu

Accepted August 31, 2019

First published August 31, 2019


Volunteering has beneficial effects both for individuals, as it increases wellbeing and life satisfaction,
and for communities. It is relevant, however, to understand the reasons for beginning this prosocial behaviour and
persisting in it. This study explores how core self-conceptions such as general self-efficacy and self-esteem may
have a role as antecedents of volunteer involvement through the mediation of different motives for volunteering.
Volunteers (n = 138, 69F) and non-volunteers (n = 112, 59F) from the same community, matched for gender and
age, were compared on self-esteem, self-efficacy, motives, volunteer involvement, life satisfaction. A path structural
model was used to investigate the hypothesized mediations. Main findings showed that self-efficacy was higher
among volunteers and that women who volunteered had higher self-esteem than women who did not. Self-esteem
had a negative association with the involvement of volunteers mediated by a career motive, and with future intention
mediated by self-enhancement. Self-efficacy played a role in encouraging people to consider engaging in volunteering
with the mediation of the values motive in non-volunteers and with the mediation of the social motive in volunteers,
together with motivations linked to using one’s own competences in both subsamples. Life satisfaction was positively
associated with the time spent volunteering each week, but not with persistence in the service and with self-esteem.
Implications may be relevant to increasing volunteer involvement.

Self-conception and volunteering: The mediational role of motivations


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Author Surname Author Initial. Title. Publication Title. Year Published;Volume number(Issue number):Pages Used. doi:DOI Number.

Monaci Maria Grazia . Scacchi Luca . Giolitti Monteu Monica . Self-conception and volunteering: The mediational role of motivations. BPA Applied Psychology Bulletin. 2019;285(1):38-51. doi:10.26387/bpa.285.1.

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Author Surname Author Initial. Title. Publication Title. Year Published;Volume number(Issue number):Pages Used. doi:DOI Number.

Monaci Maria Grazia . Scacchi Luca . Giolitti Monteu Monica . Self-conception and volunteering: The mediational role of motivations. BPA Applied Psychology Bulletin. 2019;285(1):38-51. doi:10.26387/bpa.285.1.