The role of individual, interpersonal, and organizational factors in mitigating burnout among elderly Chinese volunteers

Chau Wai Elsie Yan, Catherine So Kum Tang

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

32 Citations (Scopus)


Objective: This study examined the role of individual, interpersonal, and organizational factors in mitigating burnout among elderly Chinese volunteers in Hong Kong. Methods: A total of 295 elderly Chinese volunteers were individually interviewed on their demographic characteristics, voluntary service experience, physical health status, general self-efficacy, social support, satisfaction and perceived benefit from volunteer work, and burnout symptoms. Exploratory factor analysis was first performed to determine the underlying dimensions of burnout experience. Correlation analyses were then conducted to explore associations among major variables. Hierarchical regression analyses were also performed to unearth the relative contribution of various factors in predicting burnout among elderly volunteers. Results: A two-factor structure of burnout, namely lack of personal accomplishment and emotional depletion, was found. Demographics, individual, interpersonal, and organizational factors were significant predictors of lack of personal accomplishment. In particular, personal accomplishment was best predicted by a long duration of voluntary work service and high levels of self-efficacy, work satisfaction, and perceived benefit. For emotional depletion, only demographics and individual factors were significant predictors. A low level of emotional depletion was best predicted by older age, a short duration of voluntary work experience, and good health. Conclusions: Burnout experience was evident among elderly Chinese volunteers. There were different predictors of affective and cognitive components of burnout. Findings have significant implications to attenuate burnout symptoms among elderly volunteers.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)795-802
Number of pages8
JournalInternational Journal of Geriatric Psychiatry
Issue number9
Publication statusPublished - 1 Sep 2003
Externally publishedYes


  • Chinese elderly burnout
  • Chinese elderly volunteers
  • Elderly volunteer burnout

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Geriatrics and Gerontology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health

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