Volunteering for a charity or an organisation can be an extremely rewarding and exciting opportunity. As well as being a way to express passion about a cause and expand on your knowledge, it can also be the first step for many on their journey to working in the charity sector.
Through volunteering, many people make new friends, increase their overall confidence and even further their career, taking on further training and being offered higher roles in the future. In this article, you will find some top tips that can help you when engaging volunteers, including how to recruit others, paying their expenses and planning out their training.
Get A Trusted Volunteer To Bring Others
When it comes to getting the word out about volunteering positions in your local area or community, nothing is better than word of mouth. If people are talking about your organisation, discussing all of the positives about working alongside you, then you can guarantee that you will have volunteers lining up to get involved.
Once you have a strong team of volunteers, you may find that some volunteers may want other growth opportunities or leadership roles. One of these roles can be to help recruit new volunteers that they think would work well with your already established group. Not only does this give your current team a sense of belonging and purpose, but they will also be able to spread their passion for the charity to the next volunteers.
Offer To Pay Expenses
It goes without saying – volunteering is all about offering your time for free. This means that many people that would benefit from these experiences won’t be able to afford to do it. If your organisation offered to pay volunteers’ expenses, such as their lunches, mileage, transport or additional equipment they may need to purchase to carry out their tasks, this could open up the role to a more diverse group of people.
Whilst it is not that rare that charities or organisations won’t pay expenses, even when they do it typically takes a long time for volunteers to get reimbursed, as they will have their own cumbersome payment process (or enter volunteers on their payroll system) or, it could be a ‘cash-in-hand’ situation which includes a lot of paper and manual work. These are ways for organisations to reimburse their volunteers, however, it could be made way more efficient by doing it through an app or website. For example, if the organisation or charity signed up to a platform such as vHelp, then not only could you process expenses faster and more effectively but it also makes it easier for your team of volunteers to make claims and get paid promptly.
Training And Orientation
Nowadays, people expect things fast, meaning that once you’ve got a group of volunteers that you think will work well for your charity, you’ve got to have your training and orientation worked out and ready to go. Once you’ve got potential volunteers in mind, start planning out what they need to know about the charity, what they will be doing and ensure you have a clear idea of what their role will be and what you need to do to get them started.
When volunteers sign up to support you, they will be looking to learn valuable skills and lessons through this experience, so it’s vital that you map these out prior to hiring. Many volunteers sign up to charities or organisations because they hold the same ideals and are passionate about the cause, so being able to expand upon their knowledge of the company can often be a very exciting prospect.