Study: Volunteering linked to better overall health - KYTX CBS 19 Tyler Longview News Weather Sports

Study: Volunteering linked to better overall health

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Tyler, TX (KYTX) -- The idea behind volunteering is to help others around you, but come to find out it's good for you too.

It's a summer occasion Chalease Denson won't miss. "It goes on the calendar early so that nothing else gets in the way. I will do this for life," Denson, a volunteer for 25 years at Camp HeyDay, said.

The camp is put on by the ARC of Smith County, and is for adults with special needs.

"It really helps you forget about your problems and things going on in your life. You can come out here and it's exhausting," Denson said.

Denson is also an active member of the Junior League of Tyler, a volunteer organization that helps fund Camp HeyDay.

"Without it, we would not be able to do it," Denson said.

She and Kimberly Lobo say you get just as much, when you give back.

"It's a feeling you can't describe in words. It's fulfilling," Lobo, also a camp volunteer, said. 

A new study by the United Health Group and the Optum Institute finds 76 percent of adults who volunteer report feeling physically better. 78 percent report it lowers their stress levels.

"It just builds you up inside, and makes personal stresses inside you disappear," Lobo said.

College psychologists say volunteer work helps a person stop thinking about their own personal struggles.

If you want to start volunteer work, we have some suggestions to help you get you connected through the United Way here.

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