• Rose Tatum

5 Tips to Keep Volunteers Engaged in 2020

Finding ways to keep volunteers engaged safely during a pandemic can be challenging. The services of nonprofit organizations are needed now more than ever, however how can these services be cautiously implemented? Below are 5 suggestions that may help get your volunteers back to work.

1. Making phone calls.

If you serve clients that are secluded and alone during this time, have your volunteers give them a call! Simply provide your volunteers with a list of client contacts and an outline of appropriate conversations to engage in. Basically, volunteers can reach out to ask how your clients are doing and allow them the opportunity to have human interaction that they may be desperately needing right now.

2. Thank you cards.

Keeping up with handwritten thank you cards can be daunting but it is so important to let your supporters know they are appreciated. This can be a great task for volunteers (especially those with neat handwriting). Provide each volunteer with a list of supporter contacts, a basic script, thank you cards, and stamps. They can write these notes from home and send them off with ease. I recommend keeping track of who has been sent a thank you card by asking your volunteers to let you know when they have completed their list.

3. Complete those backburner items looming on the far reaches of your to-do list.

Are there small projects that have been put on your backburner for quite some time that can be completed virtually? Updating documents, logging donations, tracking volunteer hours, getting your organization's name on various nonprofit/volunteer websites, or maybe even researching topics related to your mission - these are all great virtual opportunities that will keep your tech savvy volunteers involved while getting your organization ahead.

4. Get your volunteers back in the field safely.

For many nonprofit organizations, the services provided require in-person volunteer activities. For example, organizations such as Wilmington Area Rebuilding Ministry depend on volunteers to make home repairs, Habitat for Humanity needs volunteers on-site to build new homes, food banks call for people to distribute commodities, etc.

Keep your mission going by training your volunteers on proper precautions and procedures to keep both them and your clients safe. This may mean encouraging social distancing and having less volunteers on-site. It is also important to provide your volunteers with personal protective equipment such as face masks, gloves, and hand sanitizer.

5. Spread the word about your cause.

Ask your volunteers to record a short video of themselves explaining why they are devoted to your nonprofit. Share this on your social media, while also asking volunteers to share on theirs. This is a fantastic way to drum up support for your mission! Be sure to ask your volunteers to tag your organization in their posts and direct people to your website.

There are many other ways to keep your volunteers involved during this time. How is your organization handling this challenge? Share your thoughts in the comments below!


Rose Tatum

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