By Joseph Staples // SWNS
A new study revealed over half of Americans (53%) gave back to their community and took action for the first time in their entire lives in 2020.
A survey of 2,000 general population Americans also found that, as a result of the pandemic, 68% of people felt more emotionally connected to their community than ever before.
Nearly as many (65%) said the pandemic provided them with the motivation they needed to get more involved in their communities. Sixty-seven percent said the pandemic caused them to give back to causes they care about more now than ever before.
Three-quarters of respondents said they either personally experienced or closely knew someone who experienced a life hardship — like losing a job, struggling financially, or not having access to food and water — due to the pandemic.
For 70% of respondents who make an active effort to support local causes, those life hardships and tough situations are the main motivators to give back to the community.
Conducted by OnePoll and commissioned by Poland Spring® Brand 100% Natural Spring Water, which recently announced “Made For A Better Tomorrow” — a national campaign that donates water to communities in need for every pledge to recycle — the study also found supporting social causes in the community is important to 68% of Americans.
Could community service go remote? Sixty-five percent of respondents said they’d be more willing to get involved in their communities if they didn’t have to be physically present. Nearly as many (63%) would actually prefer to take action virtually, instead of in-person.
Of them, 62% would be more inclined to give back virtually because it’s more accessible. For 57%, it’s to minimize health risks. Even when good deeds are concerned, health is still a top priority.
“The pandemic has made people feel more connected to their communities and created a stronger desire to give back. With roots in the Northeast for 175 years, we have long supported local communities, and our new campaign’s One-For-One Promise will invite people to join us by matching recycling pledges with water donations for communities that need it most¹,” said Yumi Clevenger-Lee, Executive Vice President and Chief Marketing Officer, BlueTriton Brands, maker of Poland Spring.
The study also found more people aren’t just giving back to the community, but are taking environmental action as well. Seventy percent say supporting environmental causes is important to them.
Sixty-four percent have noticed the past year’s events also drove them to notice a big difference in their environmental habits. Of them, 93% have been recycling more since the pandemic began.
Nearly three-quarters (74%) have made an active effort to be more environmentally friendly this past year. Main motivations have included the environmental impacts they’ve seen firsthand (53%), it’s part of their personality (49%) and to leave the world a better place (42%).
Overall, 69% of Americans say they take action for their environment and their community because it makes them simply feel good. So good, in fact, that 70% plan to keep up their good deeds after the pandemic at the same level as they do now.
“These findings, which convey current attitudes towards environmental and social action in the U.S., exemplify the power of our new initiative, not only encouraging recycling to help give plastic bottles a new life, but it also allows consumers to support local communities in need—all with a simple and safe online pledge,” added Yumi.
WHAT ARE PEOPLE DOING FOR THEIR COMMUNITY?
- Donating consumables such as food or water to communities in need 49%
- Giving food to someone in need 46%
- Giving money to someone in need 44%
- Caring for or participating in a community garden 43%
- Volunteering in a community event/charity drive 38%
WHAT ARE PEOPLE DOING FOR THEIR ENVIRONMENT?
- Recycling 58%
- Composting 53%
- Biking instead of driving 50%
- Reducing meat intake 43%
- Donating to an environmental nonprofit 32%