Learning patterns/Keeping in touch with volunteers
What problem does this solve?
Volunteers are doing great things to create and disseminate free knowledge: they give lectures, organize editing workshops, help newcomers in editing workshops, create exciting collaborations, engage in GLAM activity and invent crazy projects like WikiAir! Sometimes they don’t have with whom to share their success or new ideas and to learn what other volunteers are doing. There is a lack of a framework for supporting the volunteers and enabling mutual information sharing and collaboration.
What is the solution?
At least once a month a staff member contacts each volunteer and checks out: how they are, what volunteering activities they did in that month, etc. The staff member records the volunteer hours, types of activities and hears the volunteer’s general impressions of the activities they did. The information is collected in a table. These conversations allow the staff to be conscious when volunteers take on too many tasks. In such cases, the coordinator can offer them assistance in search of other volunteers to replace them or join them to the assignment.
Besides that, we learn about new initiatives and offer our assistance. When major events take place, the team helps recruit more volunteers; when new initiatives raise, the staff can suggest them to volunteers.
Today, some of the volunteers do not even wait for the end of the month—they get in touch with us first. At the end of the year the tables helps analyze trends, honor volunteers who contribute a significant amount of hours, and try to recruit new volunteers in fields where less volunteers are active.
- Contacting the volunteers is a long-term task. It is important to insure that the coordinator dedicates time to the subject.
When to use
All year round
- Grants:Learning patterns/When staff work with volunteers
- Grants:Learning patterns/Social processes within communities