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Junior Auxiliary of Greenwood Uses Track It Forward Mobile App to Easily Track Volunteer Hours

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Junior Auxiliary of Greenwood Uses Track It Forward Mobile App to Easily Track Volunteer Hours

Junior Auxiliary is a national association made up of 98 different chapters across mostly southern states. Greenwood, Mississippi is one of those chapters. Junior Auxiliary provides an outlet for women of a community to give back to their community needs via volunteering or donations. Members of each Junior Auxiliary chapter are required to volunteer a certain amount of hours to showcase a vital and strong presence within the community. While each Junior Auxiliary chapter is different, they all have the main premise of helping the community and organizing volunteer opportunities amongst their organization. 

Junior Auxiliary chapters have a unique volunteer base, they are very organized and track different activities beyond physical volunteering in the community. The different projects that a chapter works on require a lot of behind the scenes work and financial assistance, Junior Auxiliary of Greenwood uses Track It Forward to track all of these actions going into each project.

Junior Auxiliary of Greenwood 

In Greenwood, the Junior Auxiliary chapter has a total of 61 active members who volunteer regularly on behalf of Junior Auxiliary Greenwood to help improve and create a better community. 

Specifically, in the Greenwood chapter, President Sarah Waldrop is the liaison between the community and the members of Junior Auxiliary of Greenwood. When a member of the community needs assistance with a particular event or project they are putting on that will enhance the community, they meet with Sarah and other members of the Junior Auxiliary of Greenwood Board. Sarah then works with the Board to decide how the women of Junior Auxiliary of Greenwood can help, this could be through donations, creative help, or volunteering at the event itself. All of these actions of helping the community correlate to volunteer hours for the members of Junior Auxiliary of Greenwood.

Projects Junior Auxiliary of Greenwood Coordinates

Junior Auxiliary of Greenwood member volunteering with schools and sitting at a table with two children. Junior Auxiliary of Greenwood has 10 different projects that they are currently working on. These projects all fall under different committees that each woman chooses to be a part of. For Junior Auxiliary of Greenwood, the organization works in committees. The development of committees is something that helps organize who focuses on which project. 

When the projects require assistance, the women in the coordinating committee are the first ones to help assist, but other women in other committees are welcome to help too. This means members in a committee can volunteer for a multitude of projects. The women that are involved in Junior Auxiliary enjoy helping out the community in a variety of ways. Here are a few examples of the projects they are currently implementing into their community.

Clothing Corner

A group of Junior Auxiliary members purchase uniforms and essential clothing items for children in Leflore County. The school counselors work with Project Committee members to find the correct sizes and deliver the clothes to the schools for each individual student. This project helps students feel comfortable in their school environment! 

S.T.A.R.S - Studying Together and Revealing Smiles

This is a Biblical program introducing women from Junior Auxiliary of Greenwood to 5th-grade girls in a casual yet inspirational way. In the fall and spring, the women meet with them 3-4 times to do devotionals and help instill self-esteem and Christian values into everyday life. Sarah says, “This was something we felt like they really needed, it’s like a little intervention before the girls fully become teenagers.” 

Bucks for Books

As part of the R.E.A.D (Renewing Education Activating Development) program, his summertime event encourages students to read over the summer, to keep them engaged with their education. Students are given monetary incentives for reading and completing book reports in the summer. A gathering is held at the local library at the end of the summer to give the rewards. 

How Junior Auxiliary of Greenwood Organizes Volunteers and Volunteer Hours 

Each member of Junior Auxiliary of Greenwood is required to complete and submit at least 72 volunteer hours a year. Since a lot of Junior Auxiliary projects may require donations or time in a different aspect besides physical volunteering - there are four different categories for hour opportunities. These categories are service hours, education hours, finance hours, and administrative hours. 

Administrative hours are hours worked to organize, administer, and operate the chapter. Education hours are obtained by attending chapter meetings, area and/or National meetings, seminars, and programs that enhance volunteer skills and effectiveness. Finance hours are hours worked to raise funds for chapter and project expenses, specifically pertaining to Cotton Ball, their annual fundraiser. Service hours are obtained when providing service to others in the community by carrying out projects.

Junior Auxiliary of Greenwood likes to ensure that all of their members are helping the community out in different ways, so within the total 72-hour requirement, members must do at least 12 finance hours, 24 service hours, and 12 education hours within their total. The other 24 hours are completely up to them, they can achieve them however they would like! 

Here is a mock-up of a general outline as to how volunteer hours are organized. 

Example of Junior Auxiliary of Greenwood Project Flow Cart. How volunteer hour categorization works within committees, projects and specified hour types. Junior Auxiliary Board branches into two committees. Committee 1 has project A and Project B. Project A shows an example of bringing in a certain amount of money, which equals one finance hour. This continues for each project, committee and service and admin hours.

How Junior Auxiliary of Greenwood Tracks Volunteer Hours 

Junior Auxiliary of Greenwood screenshot of their hour log submission. There is a dropdown to explain the activity like education-chapter, service- BOOKS, service-STARS or finance. It shows the hour and project in the dropdown. Junior Auxiliary of Greenwood organizes many activities for all of the women to achieve their hourly goal, within multiple projects. They have to have a very pristine and organized system, especially considering their requirements and sub-requirements. But, fear not! They have found a system that can easily track, organize, and motivate their members.

Track It Forward helps the Junior Auxiliary of Greenwood members track volunteer’s progress towards their goal. It also helps Administrative members like Sarah oversee the hours logged, create reports, and quickly see who is doing well in reaching their goals. 

With Track It Forward’s hour logging system, administrators can create different options in a drop-down menu or allow volunteers to answer a specific question. This means when a member goes to log their hours, they can specifically select which activity they did and which category this contributed to. For Junior Auxiliary of Greenwood, this means that their volunteers can simply categorize the hours themselves according to which project and which type of hour they have completed, instead of an admin having to do it. Additionally, as this list grows Track It Forward has a conditional logic feature that can have volunteers answer specific questions for the data to be organized after logged. 

Sarah says, “We just put in the hours, the date, specifically select whether we completed service, finance or admin and then select the project. We can list the different committees and projects as an option underneath the service hour, that was super helpful.” 

How Junior Auxiliary of Greenwood used to track hours 

Sarah recalls when Junior Auxiliary of Greenwood used to use a paper method to track hours. She says they would have each category and service committee listed on this paper, and volunteers would have to keep it for a month and turn it in, then the Placements Chair on the board would have to individually approve them and calculate the totals.

This was of course difficult because people would often forget the paper, or forget to write down their hours once they had a hold of the paper. Or, if someone had to miss a meeting and could not turn their paper in, this was a bit of a task to figure out how to physically get the paper to the administrator. Sarah says Track It Forward, “basically streamlined the sheet we were working from before but made it simpler.” 

Junior Auxiliary of Greenwood especially appreciates the mobile app of Track It Forward since everyone always has their phone on them, they can easily log their hours and won’t forget. In addition, as an administrator, Track It Forward provides an overview of all volunteers and easily generates reports. This helped Sarah and other administrators save time and easily be able to see how all the members were coming along with their goals and within specific projects. 

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Features of Track It Forward That Specifically Help Junior Auxiliary of Greenwood Track Volunteer Hours 

Within Track It Forward’s general functions of volunteer hour logging and generating reports, Junior Auxiliary of Greenwood benefits from using multiple extra features. These features are especially useful for organizations that would like to be more involved in the volunteer time tracking process and who use data and goal requirements as a way of motivation. 

Mobile app

Track It Forward is available for volunteers and volunteer coordinators to use from a desktop, tablet, or mobile device

Sarah says both members and coordinators love the mobile app. The ease of recording an hour or being able to look up a member and their hours from your mobile is an opportunity to decrease mistakes made when logging, or forgetting to log. 

In addition, new members of Junior Auxiliary are usually onboarded in a separate process, learning just how important each project, committee, and volunteer opportunity is. But, with the mobile app, this process is much easier. 

“We used to have our new members have them start out on the paper sheet and then transition them over to recording hours on Track It Forward so they can see how the tracking works and how the different categories and projects fit in. But now, we just have them start straight from the app, that’s how easy it is. The app is actually less confusing than using a piece of paper to explain and teach,” says Sarah. 

Hour Approval

Two sample graphs of milestone summary. Showcasing the total hours, number of volunteers working on the requirement and a pie chart. Junior Auxiliary of Greenwood also uses the Hour Approval feature in Track It Forward. This means that each time a member submits or logs a volunteer hour, it must be approved by an administrator before being logged into the system. 

Sarah says they require hours to be approved as a protection to the members to make sure they are inputting their hours correctly, and under the correct categories, not because members are untrustworthy.

A specific board member, the Placements Chair, is in charge of approving the hours. The Hour Approval feature on Track It Forward saves her a bit of time, she can easily go into her dashboard and see what activity was done, how many hours the member submitted and which category it was submitted under. If it is incorrect, it is quite simple for her to quickly edit the category or even send a message to the member letting them know where to log their hour.

Milestones

Milestones were specifically designed for organizations like Junior Auxiliary that have a requirement or a goal that is supposed to be met in a certain amount of time. In Junior Auxiliary’s case, they have four milestones set up. One for the total requirement of 72 hours, one for the required 24 service hours, one for the required 12 education hours, and one for the required 12 finance hours

The milestone feature shows up on the volunteer’s dashboard in their app or online, letting them know how close they are to their requirement. In the admin’s dashboard, they can see their own hour submissions and their volunteers as a whole.  

So, for someone like Sarah who has to oversee all of the volunteers’ progress, she can easily see it in a chart automatically displayed when she logs in to Track It Forward. 

Sarah explains, “You can log on and easily see what members have done what. Who may be lacking hours, for example, you can see halfway through the year, so-and-so has way fewer hours than everyone else, we should check in with her.”

The milestones feature not only serves as a motivational tool for volunteers but a great way to check-in and quickly understand the advancement of all volunteers. 

Multiple admins

Track It Forward makes it extremely easy to delegate responsibilities for volunteer coordinators or administrators. There is the option to have multiple admins within the software. 

For Junior Auxiliary of Greenwood, this works out really well. Sarah, the current President, is in charge of general oversight and management of all the volunteers. The Vice President is in charge of new members and making sure they fully understand and aren’t overwhelmed. She helps a lot with going through the software. Lastly, the Placements Chair goes through and approves all the hours. As a team, the three admins can separate the duties needed within Junior Auxiliary Volunteer management while using Track It Forward. 

Advice to Other Chapters Looking at Track It Forward for Volunteer Management 

Junior Auxiliary members posing with a charity member with a large check. Sarah says she really is grateful for Track It Forward, she has used it as a member, as the Vice President and now as the President. One of her favorite things is how specific you can create categories to help organize hours. With Junior Auxiliary of Greenwood having over 10 different projects and 3 different types of hours, it is helpful to have software organize some data for you! Reports can easily be made to see how many hours have gone to one project, or how many service hours are done in comparison to finance hours.  

In addition, she notes how easy it is to edit any sort of mistake. She says, “If you mess up, it’s okay- there is someone who approves it and they can easily go in and edit it. It is truly not the end all be all if you happen to make a mistake when logging hours. It’s easy to fix a mistake. Don’t let the technology intimidate you.” 

Track It Forward helps many organizations like Junior Auxiliary of Greenwood track all the wonderful work their volunteers are doing. Take it from Sarah, she says, “It truly makes life easier, we are all busy and this helps.”

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