What is the easiest way for retirees to get involved in their local communities if they retire abroad? Civic engagement and volunteerism provide the easiest and sometimes cheapest ways for retirees to acclimate themselves into a foreign culture during their retirement years. The International Community Foundation recently released its report “Civic Engagement, Volunteerism and Charitable Giving: Americans Retiring in Mexico’s Coastal Communities” to highlight the American commitment to volunteerism, civic engagement and charitable giving among U.S. retirees in Mexico. Key statistics include:
- Nearly 60 percent of respondents volunteer their time to a charitable cause in Mexico and over 29 percent volunteer at least once a week or on a regular basis.
- Almost 70 percent of respondents reported contributing financially to Mexican charitable organizations, with over half (53 percent) reported donating over $100, sometimes significantly more, including over 4 percent that gave over $2,500 annually.
- This is not a win-lose between U.S. and Mexican charities. Over 51 percent of those surveyed continue to contribute to U.S. charities back in their communities of origin.
- Forty-two percent of American retirees surveyed are actively involved in at least one or two Mexican charities in their adopted communities, while another 11 percent are affiliated with more than three.
The survey was conducted by interviewing 840 U.S. retirees over 50 years of age in Mexico’s coastal communities to identify trends in this population regarding lifestyle, housing/real estate, health care, and environmental issues, as well as civic engagement, volunteerism and charitable giving.
The research series can be accessed electronically at “Civic Engagement, Volunteerism and Charitable Giving: Americans Retiring in Mexico’s Coastal Communities”