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5 Ways to Increase Volunteer Engagement at Your Nonprofit Organization


April is National Volunteer Month. This special focus encourages people to get out, give back, and make a difference! Your organization might see an increase in people coming to roll up their sleeves. Keep them coming back with these 5 ways to increase volunteer engagement.



  1. Make a Plan. Having a plan in place for making the most of volunteer's time is an important part of engagement. When people give their time to a cause, it should be respected. Having a tactical plan in place for how an event should go, or more strategically, outlining your volunteer program will help ensure meaningful work towards a mission.

  2. Define (and communicate) the organization's needs. Understanding your organizations needs will help you communicate them to those who volunteer. Many hands make light work, if that work is well-defined. This is a great idea if your staff or more regular volunteers are starting to face burn-out or are overworked. Have them define what they do, and what they can (or would like to) delegate. These needs can be put into the overall volunteer plan and should be communicated out to the organization.

  3. Recognize and appreciate service. Time is money! Outside of the fact that most volunteers are also donors, giving time has a cost. Find simple ways to recognize those that volunteer to support your organizations mission. It might be a simple thank you at the end of the day or as elaborate as a volunteer appreciation banquet.

  4. Build the relationship. Growing a network of passionate people is a valuable goal for organizations of any size. Volunteer opportunities could be the start of a beautiful relationship. Try to help people see how their goals can be achieved by staying involved.

  5. Provide easy ways to stay involved. Attending a community clean-up for the first time, might not seem like a big deal to some people. If you are hosting a large-scale volunteer day or event, have a next step ready to introduce to people who are interested in learning more, helping more, or giving more. Don't let them walk away without an idea of how to stay engaged.


These are just a few ideas to get the conversation going about volunteer engagement. If you would like to join the conversation on improving volunteer engagement, register for the next Mission Focused Mixer coming up April 18th at Noon EST! We are going to talk about how staying mission focused can help attract, retain, and engage volunteers for your organization.



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