One extra hour can make the world a better place

Time change prompts discussion on what an extra hour would mean to British Columbians

If granted just one extra hour, nearly one in five British Columbians would catch up on their sleep.

With the clocks about to fall back and give British Columbians a precious extra hour for one day, Big Brothers Big Sisters and FedEx Express Canada are asking people in the province and across Canada to join them on Facebook to discuss how they would use a single hour to make the world a better place.

To start the dialogue, the two organizations asked Angus Reid to poll people about their time priorities, and the results show just how over worked, stressed out and time crunched residents actually are. Consider how your time preferences compare.

British Columbia versus National Findings:

n Nearly one in five of those British Columbians surveyed (17 per cent) were so time deprived they said they would use their extra hour to sleep, compared to 22 per cent nationally.

n Another 25 per cent would spend their hour catching up on chores and household errands versus 24 per cent in other parts of Canada.

n Relationships and health were clear priorities – 29 per cent of British Columbians would invest their hour in family and friends and 14 per cent would exercise. Nationally, 25 per cent said they would spend their hour with family and friends and 14 per cent said they would exercise.

n Not surprisingly, the last thing time-stressed British Columbians – like other Canadians – want to do is work. A solitary two per cent in the province and across Canada said they would spend their hour on the job.

n One in ten British Columbians (12 per cent) would pursue personal interests or hobbies, compared to six per cent in other parts of Canada.

n Only two per cent of British Columbians would devote their extra hour to community service, compared to five per cent nationally. (Note: numbers may not add up due to rounding.)

“The FedEx Value of an Hour Survey sends a clear message: British Columbians like people right across this country need to make room in their busy lives for their human needs,” said Bruce MacDonald, president of Big Brothers Big Sisters of Canada (BBBSC). “Imagine what could happen to levels of personal satisfaction and connectedness if everyone could free up just one hour to improve life in their communities.

“As for the sleep deprived among us, there is no better way to revitalize than helping others.”

The fact that British Columbians are forgoing community service because of the frantic pace of their lives should come as no surprise.

What is less known is that being a volunteer is a proven path to personal happiness and self-fulfillment. In fact, research clearly shows that community volunteers believe they get far more out of donating their time than they give.

In a bid to inspire people to make time to volunteer, the two organizations want to engage people in a broad Facebook discussion about the power of a single hour to change lives and strengthen communities.

“Too many of us think that being a volunteer inherently involves a major time commitment,” said MacDonald.

“The truth is that even small acts by caring people can make a big difference. We are asking British Columbians to think outside themselves and answer a simple question: What would you do to change the world if you had one hour?”

People can voice their ideas about the value of an hour by visiting Everyone is invited to join the discussion and upload videos describing how their lives are being stretched by today’s hectic pace and how they would make the world a better place with a single hour.

Two video or comment submissions will be randomly drawn to each win a return air travel voucher for two to any destination served by WestJet.

Time Priorities for British Columbians

To mark the end of daylight savings time, The FedEx Value of an Hour Survey asked time-starved British Columbians to prioritize how they would spend an extra hour if they could reschedule their busy schedules to free one up.

In order of priority, here is how British Columbians said they would spend their additional hour:

1. Family and friends (29 per cent);

2. Completing household errands and chores (25 per cent);

3. Catching up on sleep (17 per cent);

4. Exercise (14 per cent);

5. Pursuing personal interests (12 per cent);

6. Volunteering (two per cent);

7.  Work (two per cent).