How to Keep and Grow Your Volunteers
If recruiting volunteers to help out your parent group organization seems difficult, then you must make it a priority to keep them once they’re there. Here’s a few helpful tips on how to maintain and grow your volunteer base.
So How Do I Get Volunteers Then?
Make Them Feel Welcome
The first time a volunteer comes to help in your organization is SIGNIFICANT. Imagine that this person will either be One and Done, or might provide hundreds of hours, and help recruit for a hundreds more. Just like the first day of school, or the fist day on a job, they will be anxious. Seems silly to the veterans who have been in the group for years but think back to when you started. Make sure you welcome them. Make sure they feel appreciated and do everything to make it a positive experience.
Inform and Train Them
As part of welcoming make sure each person is told and shown what to do. There are different ways each of us learn so be sure to check and get feedback regarding a Volunteers understanding of what the will be doing. In the heat of a project or event sometimes it’s easier to “Just do it myself”. If that’s the case perhaps that will be how the rest of your events go too. Don’t let that happen make an effort to include everyone, assign tasks, train and most of all follow up with each individual.
Appreciation is Key
Appreciation comes in many forms. For nonprofit organizations it is monetary. So what works. Making volunteer appreciation a part of your organizations foundation is important. Let each person know what they contributed and how it matters. You can do this through an Appreciation Luncheon and simply by telling each volunteer what their contribution means to your group. Offer points for hours of service and use non-monetary rewards like special parking space for events or upfront seating for Plays, Graduation, concerts etc. Get creative!
Make it a Priority
To be successful recruiting volunteers your organization must be committed to it. Make it an important part of all your groups planning. Have that one person, Volunteer Coordinator, who’s responsible for the recruiting plan. Remind everyone to Always Be Recruiting. If you nurture your volunteers, treat them great, and show appreciation for their efforts you will maintain a volunteer corps for years to come.