Need to get more volunteers for your nonprofit? While it feels good to “give back,” you might see a bigger surge in your volunteer roster if you effectively market the volunteer experience. Are people aware of the fantastic benefits of being a volunteer for your organization and supporting your wonderful cause?
8 Ways to Get More Volunteers
- Volunteering should be a win-win situation. Be sure that your (prospective and current) volunteers know that their selfless efforts also contribute to their own personal growth. While assisting in the achievement of your nonprofit’s goals, volunteers are transforming their own lives, as well.
- One of the best kept secrets is that volunteering is actually good for your health! According to a study in Social Science & Medicine, the more people volunteer, the happier they are. By helping others and contributing to the greater good, volunteers experience a sense of accomplishment and increased self esteem.
- Volunteering also keeps people active and provides an opportunity to develop a strong support system, making them less vulnerable to depression. The Health Benefits of Volunteering: A Review of Recent Research reports that those who volunteer actually live longer and have greater functional ability.
- From a social perspective, volunteering is an easy way to make new friends and become a part of the community. The networking opportunities are limitless, especially for those who assist with events and fundraisers. Volunteering provides a stress free environment to meet like-minded people, with similar priorities. With every person who they meet comes an opportunity to broaden their horizons and open new doors.
- As one life-long volunteer says, “Volunteering brings you in touch with people of like minds, offers the opportunity to make new friends, and expands your own mind as you look beyond your own needs and recognize the needs of others in your community and the world.”
- For those with little or no work experience, volunteering can be a chance to improve one’s skill set and enhance a resume. Learning invaluable skills, such as problem solving, teamwork, and organization will make a volunteer a more viable candidate for employment. Volunteering might, also, allow one to explore a new career path, without making a long-term commitment.
- Don’t forget to mention any the freebies your volunteers can take advantage of, like staying to enjoy the festivities after staffing an event and free food/drinks at organizational meetings. Consider extending any discounts your staff receives on products or services, too, if possible.
- The best perk might be all of the gratitude and appreciation you bestow upon your volunteers at your annual volunteer appreciation event. If you don’t have one of those on your calendar, start planning one today! The volunteer who will truly make a difference is the one who is valued, treated well, and gains the most from the experience.
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About the Author: Aloma Arter is a Media and Professional Communications graduate of the University of Pittsburgh and a writer for New Place Collaborations, LLC. A reformed fashion addict, she now spends her time writing, walking her dog, beating her grandmother at Scrabble, and seeking awesome adventures.