Katie Couric's Notebook: Volunteers

They are the backbone of our communities: Americans who donate their time to help feed the hungry or coach Little League, organize the church clothing drive or serve as a volunteer firefighter - and their numbers are growing.

The Corporation for National and Community Service says almost 62 million Americans volunteered last year. That's the highest number since 2005, with 16 to 25-year-olds making up half the increase. This comes at a time when charities and community groups are really struggling. The sour economy means donations are down while requests for help are up.

So, if you roll up your sleeves to do your part, thank you. But if you're among the almost three-quarters of adults who don't pitch in, here's your chance. I bet there's a nearby hospital that wants your help or a neighborhood child who needs a tutor. Whatever the cause, try giving your time. You'll be amazed at how much you get back.

That's a page from my notebook.