The theme for the 2018 National Volunteer Week was “celebrating the value of volunteerism-building confidence, comptetence, connections and community”. ECVO celebrated with a volunteer fair and week-long campaign. We also held our third annual celebration for volunteer managers. We believe that without trained and supported professionals to manage and engage volunteers, the ability to successfully give back to your community in formal roles is greatly hindered.
This year’s celebration was a breakfast seminar titled “Demonstrating Your Volunteers’ Impact.” Close to 50 volunteer managers filled the Kingsway room at the Polish Hall to discuss the seminar by Everyone Ready and dive into how they can show their volunteers, colleagues, funders and stakeholders the impact of their program. Here are the top 5 takeaways from the morning:
Not everyone in organizations is informed on the work volunteers do.
Sometimes this includes volunteers themselves. It’s important for coordinators to give everyone at the organization the opportunity to learn about the work of volunteers. It allows everyone to celebrate successes, learn from challenges and also gives volunteers the opportunity to discover other opportunities at your organization.
Each stakeholder at your organization might need to know different information.
This can seem overwhelming, especially if you’re the one compiling and reporting all the data. However, think about how current statistics or reports can be tweaked to meet the needs of different people.
Make your reporting numbers come alive.
You can still track and report on volunteer hours but try telling a specific story from a volunteer that demonstrates the impact the work has on them; you can also tap into a client’s experience rather than just reporting the number of people served.
Involve volunteers in demonstrating their impact.
Use volunteer feedback and surveys to gain insight for reports. You can also use the feedback to improve your service!
Revamp your website.
Websites are great way to showcase volunteer accomplishments. It’s also important to tie recognition into your plan on demonstrating the impact of volunteers. Once you know how valuable volunteers are, share that with them! That’s the best motivation you can give a hardworking volunteer corps.
No matter what reporting you do to your funders or organizations, remember there might be an opportunity to tell the story of your volunteer’s impact in creative ways. Demonstrating the impact of volunteer work will inspire, educate and motivate successful participation in your organization.