Exploring the Motives and Retention Factors of Sport-For-Development Volunteers

Jon Welty Peachey, Alexis Lyras, Adam Cohen, Jennifer E. Bruening, George B. Cunningham

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Due to the importance of volunteers within the sport industry, there have been increased efforts to determine the motivation behind these acts of volunteerism. However, most research has focused on volunteers with professional sporting events and organizations, and very few studies have investigated volunteer motivations behind sport-for-development initiatives. The purpose of this study is to investigate the motivation of volunteers who chose to take part in the World Scholar-Athlete Games, a multinational sport-for-development event, and to identify factors related to their retention. This qualitative study was guided by the functional approach to volunteer motivation. Results revealed volunteers were motivated by values, social, understanding, career and self-enhancement factors. In addition, volunteers whose initial motivations for volunteering were satisfied continued to donate time to the event year after year. Implications for theory and practice, as well as future research directions, are discussed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1052-1069
Number of pages18
JournalNonprofit and Voluntary Sector Quarterly
Issue number6
StatePublished - Dec 26 2014


  • sport-for-development
  • volunteer motivation
  • volunteer retention
  • volunteerism

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Sciences (miscellaneous)


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