Another 50 Ways to thank and support volunteers

51. Keep volunteers informed of changes in structure and personnel
52. Provide adequate clothing and name badges if appropriate
53. Use quotes from volunteers in leaflets and annual reports
54. Devote resources (time and money) to volunteer support
55. Count up how many hours volunteers contribute and publicise this

56. Ensure all paid staff and trainees know how to work effectively with volunteers
57. Provide accredited training
58. Hang a volunteer photo board in a prominent position

59. Give volunteers the opportunity to evaluate their own performance and role
60. Do not overwhelm volunteers
61. Build volunteers' self-esteem by giving them a sense of ownership of their work
62. Always be appreciative of volunteers' contribution
63. Ensure volunteers have adequate space and equipment to do their work
64. Provide excellent training and coaching
65. Recognise that volunteers play a unique role
66. Have an annual volunteer award ceremony
67. Focus on the problem, if there is one, not the personality of the volunteer
68. Create two-way communication processes
69. Have occasional lunches, dinners, barbecues, picnics, etc
70. Create a volunteer notice board
71. Set up a volunteers forum
72. Allow volunteers to get involved in solving problems
73. Pay for an eye test if they sit in front of a computer all day
74. Review the progress of volunteers on a regular basis
75. Reimburse out-of-pocket expenses
76. Send a card at Christmas
77. Conduct an exit interview when a volunteer leaves
78. Have a 'volunteer voice' section in your newsletter
79. Be honest at all times
80. Provide constructive appraisal
81. Make volunteers feel good about themselves
82. Don't treat volunteers as 'second class citizens'
83. Ensure confidentiality for your volunteers
84. Present an occasional inexpensive gift
85. Provide volunteers with a 'rights and responsibilities' charter
86. Don't bully them into doing tasks which they have made clear they don't want to do
87. Give free membership to your organisation
88. Ensure you have adequate support skills yourself
89. Ask why volunteers are leaving or have left
90. Throw a volunteers party
91. Use surveys as a way of eliciting your volunteers' views
92. Provide free refreshments during coffee and tea breaks
93. Celebrate United Nations International Volunteer Day (5 December each year)
94. Suggest sources of help and support for personal problems
95. Allow volunteers to air legitimate grievances and make sure they are dealt with swiftly
96. Send a card or flowers if volunteers are ill or bereaved
97. Encourage them to sit on committees and attend meetings
98. Ensure a safe and healthy working environment
99. Allow volunteers to take on more challenging responsibilities
100. Make sure that every volunteer has equal access to support


This fact sheet is used by kind permission of
Volunteering Ireland
Carmichael Centre for Voluntary Groups
Coleraine House
Coleraine Street
Dublin 7

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