Happy Volunteer Appreciation Week! | Track It Forward

Happy Volunteer Appreciation Week!

Written by Kasey Murphy

Volunteer Coordinator Resource Community Recap 4/13-4/18

It’s volunteer appreciation week, and we know that y’all are excited about it! It seems like the past two months we have had volunteer appreciation-related topics in the online community recaps because it is so important to Volunteer Coordinators! 

So, shout out to all of the Volunteer Coordinators who have been working so hard to make sure their volunteers feel appreciated, or are going to be feeling appreciated this week! 

To start off, we are going to list all of our volunteer appreciation resources for quick reference! 

Beyond, ALL of these resources, there are still some topics that we want to address, especially since there are members in the Facebook group that want to talk about it! So, let’s get into it! Anyone doing anything creative on social media for NVW? I think it would be fun if we shared our favorite posts throughout the week in this group so we can steal (borrow? ;)) ideas from one another! 
I'll start: This is our Volunteer Facebook Group header from now until the end of next week. We are already seeing more engagement and interest in the post than we normally get (we have a lot of volunteers who lurk, rather than engage. I can't blame them. I'm the same way on my personal SM).

Social media can be a huge factor for Volunteer Appreciation Week! There are many ways to use social media to your advantage, let’s see what the comments had to say here. 

  • “ We are having a virtual Volunteer Appreciation Party on 23rd and posted that on the page but cover is such a great idea!”

  • “We are doing a promotion all month long - featuring a different partner each day and youth from 23-25 for Global Youth Service Days”

  • “We're doing a virtual author by Stephen G Post (author of Why Good Things Happen to Good People). Anyone wanting to share this to your volunteers can PM me so I can send you the link.”

You can promote your volunteers on social media, showcase volunteer statistics, or even just share stories and photos of your volunteers, who you love so much! 

We're thinking about creating a private Facebook group for our volunteer community. Have you done this? Any advice for us? Am I crazy to want to do this?

On a similar note, having a volunteer social media group is a great way to recognize your volunteers on a more personal level. A Facebook group is also a great way to casually communicate with your volunteers! 

Here’s what everyone had to say in the comments: 

  • “This blog post from VolunteerPro might be helpful: https://volpro.net/facebook-groups-for-nonprofit.../

  • “I've been thinking similar; for us though the demographic of existing volunteers means it wouldn't really work. I had thought about linking a volunteer page with the organisation main FB page but using it to promote opps and run success stories of vols”

  • “Just don't set it up tied to your personal account. We used this for summer interns a couple years ago, and it was great. The only drawback is that it takes a lot of time to monitor content. I had to remove a couple of posts, then explain to thenteens why it wasn't appropriate.”

  • “We have a ton of groups that each team and group has for our volunteers. It is awesome cause you can share so much! Most of the posts are pictures people take of our animals and sharing good stories. We also are able to post announcements and urgent things and tag certain people when we need it. I highly recommend them!”

  • “I use kaizala for chat info and news, the volunteers seem to enjoy interacting on it particularly in the past year with the pandemic”

  • “We have one and it is a great way to share pictures and ideas.”

  • “I started one a couple months ago. I post content 3 times a week. We have had a good response.”

  • “Yes! Ours is pretty active. It’s been a great way to connect and share urgent pleas, etc. Let me know if you want me to invite you to the group temporarily if you’d like to check it out!”

  • “Yes ours is pretty active. Been running for about 4 years with now about 80 vollies.”

Volunteer appreciation can be many different shades of many different colors - it all depends on the organization and the volunteers! 

Volunteer appreciation is a large part of retaining volunteers, as well as showing them appreciation and thanks for all the hard work that at they do, for free! 

Volunteer Coordinators, you too, are appreciated for working hard to allow so many organizations and missions and volunteers to feel appreciated!