Finding the right role
Part one of finding the right role is finding a good volunteer organization in general and a good volunteer organizational fit for you. Ideally the organization has a manager or co-ordinator of volunteers who has a Volunteer Management certificate. I remember our Fringe volunteer co-ordinator. She did not have a volunteer management certificate but she made our training so much fun – it was a definite sign that the actual volunteering would be good. They also had Volunteer Troupers of the day (Fringe is a 10 day arts and culture festival) which recognized troupers who had gone out of their way for the festival that day. Other volunteers nominated them
Top 3 Tips
- Do they know what you’ll be doing? Believe it or not sometimes organizations are unprepared and don’t really know what you’ll be doing. They should have a role description and be able to answer your questions.
- Did they tell you who to speak to if you have questions? Did you feel welcome? Again some organizations take their volunteers for granted. A good volunteer organization will give you a contact and clear instructions on what to do if you have a question. They will introduce you around the organization and orient you.
- Is it fun? Do you feel valued? Did they remember your name after your first week or ask after you if you missed a week? Yes we volunteer to help others but it doesn’t and shouldn’t have to be a miserable experience
Check out your local Volunteer Centre or the Ontario Volunteer Network for your local hub of volunteer organizations. Don’t give up if they don’t return your call (yes it happens). For all the duds there is a volunteer role in the rough – a diamond fit for you.
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