Helping can beat blues.
A study says half of Britons who volunteer "feel less depressed", and two-thirds believe that giving up their time helps them "feel less stressed".
The research was carried out by pollsters ICM and commissioned by Community Service Volunteers. Psychologist Gladeana McMahon said: "It's clear that keeping physically and mentally active can often improve your state of mind.
"There's also a lot of fun to be had that is likely to put a smile back on your face."
The findings were released ahead of "Blue Monday" - January 24 - which is thought to be the most depressing day of the year.
January is a dismal month for millions of Brits because of drab weather, fading Christmas memories and mounting credit card debts.