I recently started volunteering at an organization in Atlanta in order to get involved in the community. It wasn’t until I had a horrible experience with their volunteer services that I thought about discontinuing my giving to the organization.
From the mismanagement of the volunteers to the lack of gratitude, I was angry and never wanted to give anything to the organization again (whether it was time or money). I stuck with it because I had already committed several days to jumping through all of the hoops of the volunteer process and it was too late to back out.
It made me feel as if they had volunteers throwing themselves at the organization and I was neither needed nor wanted. The most frustrating part of the ordeal was that no one from volunteer services ever thanked me or anyone I was with for our time.
Volunteers are vital to community outreach and can attest to the good work the organization is doing on a daily basis.
The benefits of volunteering are not only for the volunteer but the organization as well. Given the proper training, a productive volunteer can handle simple tasks that would otherwise be handled by a paid employee.
Jim Paglia, President/CEO of In’s & Out’s, LLC, once said in a blog post “The motives for volunteer service are as varied as the people who do it. It’s important to find roles that match skills, present challenges, provide a sense of accomplishment, allow for a degree of trial and error and generate the personally desired form of reward or recognition.”
From Board members to program volunteers, everyone brings certain skills and talents to volunteer work and, when used appropriately, can have cost benefits for the organization.
Volunteers bring credibility to an organization since they have fewer vested interests and renewed energy.
Once I started volunteering I found it to be a rewarding experience and enjoyed my time there. The staff within the organization was kind and appreciative. They took the time to get to know me and I offered an ear if they needed someone to talk to.
I found that it wasn’t really what I was doing that helped the people, but just being a smiling face amidst the chaos provided the help they needed. These were the people that every dollar goes to support and I was reminded of why giving to the organization is crucial.
A simple “thank you” was all that I wanted to hear from the staff of the volunteer services, but to this day I have never heard it.
Remember to thank the volunteers who assist your organization in any capacity because every little bit matters. They have committed their time and talents to the organization and should be appreciated for their good work.
Let’s put our southern manners into action!