The 2010 estimate for the value of a volunteer hour reached $21.36, an increase from $20.85 per hour in 2009, according to Independent Sector, a national nonprofit advocacy organization in Washington, D.C.

“While the value of volunteers can be measured, we know that commitment volunteers put into helping millions of people is priceless,” said Diana Aviv, President and CEO of Independent Sector. “America’s tradition of giving back is very generous and should make us all proud. We continue to support and celebrate the volunteers for their selfless service.”

The valuation of volunteer time provides one way to measure the impact millions of individuals make with each hour they dedicate to make a difference, according to Independent Sector.

The highest value of volunteer time in 2009 was $32.79 in Washington, D.C.

 The lowest was Montana at $14.89. The rate was $11.31 in Puerto Rico and $15.88 in the Virgin Islands, according to Independent Sector.

Approximately 63.4 million Americans, or 26.8 percent of the adult population, gave 8.1 billion hours of volunteer service worth $169 billion during 2009. Estimates for 2010 will be released this summer.

According to the Corporation for National Community Service, this is an additional 1.6 million volunteers compared to 2008, making 2009 the largest single-year increase in the number of volunteers since 2003. 

To access the numbers for every state and learn more about the hourly value of volunteer time, visit www.independentsector.org