MAVA’s Top Trends in Volunteerism for 2012
Volunteer resources leaders have to be nimble and smart to stay on top of the changes in who is volunteering. Gone on the days where you can start the New Year expecting a repeat of the previous year. Here is what the Minnesota Association for Volunteer Administration (MAVA) has identified as the top trends in who is volunteering and the top strategies to capitalize on the trends.
Top Trends for 2012 in Who is Volunteering
- Traditional core of stable retired volunteers is aging and Boomers seeking different volunteer experiences.
- Students (and non students) seeking experience from internships.
Job seekers volunteering to gain employability.
Corporate volunteering on the rise.
- Volunteers from immigrant communities increasing.
Millennials volunteering in record breaking numbers.
Top Strategies for 2012 to Address the Trends
- Train and support the staff in your organization who work with volunteers on how to capitalize on the changes in who is volunteering.
- Increase use of technology in recruiting and communicating with volunteers.
- Develop partnerships to feed volunteer recruitment.
- Build relationships with immigrant communities and other groups you are targeting for volunteering.
- Structure Intern positions to have consistent work done by a changing pool of volunteers.
- Be prepared with resources to support jobseekers in gaining employability from volunteering.
- Talk with volunteers to learn passions and talents and mutually design his/her volunteer role to use those talents.
- Offer a wide choice of volunteer opportunities in all aspects of the organization’s operations.
- Include some short term and seasonal volunteer positions to align with current volunteer availability.
- Offer skills-based and higher responsibility volunteer opportunities to maximize what volunteers can bring to the organization.
- Move volunteers into project leadership roles. Be open to project ideas that volunteers propose.
- Advocate for your volunteer program. Be a change agent.
Thank you to the participants at the MAVA 2011 Annual meeting for sharing the top trends you are seeing and sharing the strategies you are using. Thank you also to MAVA trainers and leadership for sharing the tops trends you are seeing. Strategies were also drawn from MAVA work on volunteerism in immigrant communities and engaging Boomers as volunteers.
Resources for Strategies to Address Top Trends
Job Seeking Volunteers
- Access the FREE Toolkit for Recruiting and Supporting Job Seeking Volunteers
- Study research on increase in volunteers looking for workforce experience from volunteering
- Download “Promising Practices for Engaging Job Seekers as Volunteers
Interns and Service Learning
Engaging Boomers and New Generations of Volunteers
- Attend day long workshop on updating volunteer systems
- Access best practices, resources on redesigning positions, case studies and more!
Volunteers in Immigrant and Refugee Communities
- Access research by Dr. Mai Moua on Volunteerism in Hmong, Somali and Latino Communities
- Attend a training or read the FAQ on engaging volunteers from immigrant communities