Increase Volunteer Awareness with 4 Easy to Implement Strategies
What is Volunteering?
It is a voluntary act by an individual or group of individuals who provide their time and efforts towards a specific service or cause. People can choose to volunteer based on their skill set such as education, animal welfare, and medicine, or simply because they want to support a cause such as natural disaster relief, educational drives, etc.
What is Volunteer Awareness?
Volunteer awareness means putting out information about volunteer opportunities to attract potential volunteers. Organizations often conduct programs to support their mission and goals, which require external volunteers. Volunteer awareness helps to send across the message about different programs to let potential volunteers know about the available opportunities.
Benefits of Volunteer Awareness
- Attract suitable volunteers: Volunteer awareness practices help you find the most suitable people for your program. Depending on the needs of the organization and the program goals, you can make sure that people with the right skills and mindset join the volunteer program.
- Improve public image: Volunteer awareness practices also help in raising public image. When people get to know about a program, they get curious to know more about the organization, what it does, its mission, etc. This further helps in building a better reputation amongst the public.
4 Actionable Strategies to Increase Volunteer Awareness
- Identify the right advertising avenues: To increase volunteer awareness, there are many channels an organization can use to invite volunteers. Choosing the right tool depends upon the target volunteers you would prefer. If you’re looking for a younger group of volunteers, you can choose to spread the message of your volunteer opportunity through social media.
It is a channel that is used frequently by the younger generation. If you’re looking to attract slightly older volunteers, you could try email, newspaper, and SMS advertising strategies. People in an older age group are more likely to use these tools for information, which means there is a higher chance of your message reaching this group.
- Focus organization messaging on goals: For an organization to successfully increase volunteer awareness, they need to develop their messaging in a way that is compatible with their target audience. People will choose to join an organization’s volunteer program depending on how they can relate to them.
There are numerous volunteer opportunities in the market, which means that if an organization’s messaging does not stand out, volunteers may not want to invest their time with them. To develop a powerful organizational message, it is necessary to consider the following:
- Keep the organization’s mission/goal at the center of the message.
- Identify and capitalize on strengths.
- Personalize messaging as much as possible.
- Show an empathetic and humanitarian side of the organization.
Image credit: Christina Via Unsplash
- Improve experiences of current volunteers: If you have an ongoing program, try and deliver the best experience for existing volunteers. When current volunteers feel excited and motivated about the program, they will more likely want to call for newer recruits for the program.
You can enhance experiences by listening to the volunteers’ grievances, their feedback, putting their suggestions in place, etc. Better volunteer experiences also help drive a better reputation and trustworthiness of an organization, making people want to take their time and join volunteer opportunities.
- Utilize volunteer management tools: Making use of tools such as volunteer management software can help you streamline volunteer outreach and programs. You can use them to simplify and share opportunity pages online, set reminders, acknowledge current volunteers, and much more. Volunteer platforms can help simplify processes and allow volunteers to join programs conveniently, keep track of new opportunities, improve back-and-forth communication, manage team members’ access, etc., more efficiently.
Benefits of Volunteer Programs
- Improve communities: Volunteer programs are created for the betterment of our surroundings. They can help neighboring communities grow by arranging resources, building networks, applying for better facilities, and more. Volunteer programs can help raise awareness about problems surrounding a community and invite external help to resolve the issues.
- Contributes towards economy: Fundraising volunteer programs help build better facilities and resources for people, places, and living beings in dire need. These resources can further help improve the standards of living, thus contributing towards the betterment of the economy.
- Improves social channels: Volunteering is a social activity that involves a number of people coming together and working for a cause. When this happens, people can expand their social networks and spread the news about volunteering work. When more people get to know about a volunteer program, interested people can come forward and possibly join the program.
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