Idaho Volunteerism


The increasingly familiar yellow “Mormon Helping Hands” shirts


The local Sandpoint magazine is excited to note that a national study ranks Idaho second among the fifty American states in terms of volunteerism.


This is, indeed, something of which to be proud.


The fact that the only state outranking Idaho is Utah makes me wonder whether this high level of volunteerism isn’t a Mormon-driven phenomenon.  I’m guessing that it is.


The Mormon population up here in the Idaho panhandle isn’t especially high, but the southern part of the state, and especially the southeastern portion, is essentially Utah North:  Culturally, it’s heavily Mormon.  I suspect that that’s a major factor in driving Idaho’s statistics regarding volunteerism.


Many of us were both amused and quietly pleased when, several years ago, after a disastrous Florida hurricane, the Miami Herald remarked that two churches had been especially effective in their relief efforts: the Mormon Church and The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.


Written north of Sandpoint, Idaho, on 24 March 2013.

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