The key to engaging and retaining your volunteers is to make a great first impression. Start your volunteer event on a positive note, and you will build on a foundation of trust, respect and a passion for your cause.
Be present, helpful and proactive
First-time volunteers will feel much more comfortable if they have the proper training and support from your organization. Make a great first impression simply by being available to answer questions and provide assistance.
Communicate clearly and honestly
Nothing gets in the way of a good first impression like poor communication. When you design a volunteer opportunity for first-time volunteers, make sure you clearly lay out the project and time frame – and then stick to it.
Provide free food and drinks
Everyone loves free food. Simply by offering free bottles of water and snacks, you give your volunteers the impression that you appreciate their hard work and want them to be comfortable.
Keep them smiling
Volunteering doesn’t have to be all-work and no-play. Add a bit of humor into your events to keep your volunteers smiling. Remember, the more fun they have, the more likely they will want to volunteer again.
Let your enthusiasm show
Inspire and encourage your volunteers by showing passion and enthusiasm for your cause. Work alongside them and don’t hesitate to show pride in the work you all accomplish together. Volunteers feel much more engaged in the projects they do if they feel like it’s a collaborative effort.
Photo by williamcho