For any organization, hiring employees is necessary but can pose a burden especially if funds are tight. In the case of NGOs, the possibility of accepting volunteers is a possibility to be optimized as it can reduce the financial burden greatly. But given that there are also numerous volunteer opportunities available, you need to make sure your volunteer program will stand out for people to even begin considering. To do this, your NGO will need to take certain steps and actions. Some of these steps are the following:
- Inform people of your initiatives
Seldom will people want to volunteer for organizations they are not aware of. Investing in promotional materials such as brochures will be necessary to attract a number of youths. Having these materials distributed in events will likely influence the youth. The information they gain can also be shared with their networks such as friends and family. Try to provide something useful so that in case the people you give such materials to are no interested, they can still make use of it and others who see it might show interest.
- Focus on your initiatives
Given that your target volunteers will be millennials, they are inclined to knowing more about what your organization does for society. Focus on the initiatives you have and how volunteering can make a difference in other people’s lives. Make them feel as if they will be part of the betterment of a certain community, and not on the technical details of your organization.
- Optimize social media
It’s safe to say that a majority of potential millennial volunteers are on social media. In order to reach a vast range of individual volunteers, making use of the right social media channels will definitely be helpful. In using the right social media accounts, take note of your target audience. For your followers, Twitter might be too much. Although millennials are present on Twitter, following your organization’s account will not necessarily encourage them to volunteer especially given their 240 character limit. Facebook will be a good setting to encourage them as you will be able to share photos and videos of inspiring content of the beneficiaries volunteers will be able to help.
Although millennials will be your target audience, through Facebook, you will be able to reach other people such as their parents and other networks which can inevitably reach your targets. That way, you can successfully reach a larger network.
- Improve on your website
Often times for nonprofits, after their website has been set, only a few of the information is updated while the layout and design are often overlooked. This will take a toll on your following and the possibilities of acquiring volunteers will shrink. If your website is not updated and appealing, the likelihood of people exploring it will be slim, and hence slimmer chances of acquiring volunteers as well.
- Reward your volunteers
At the end of the day, the power of word of mouth will still be helpful in your goal of acquiring new volunteers. If your previous volunteers gained many good experiences and skills through your program, they will surely rely this to their peers. Likewise, if their experiences with you were not great, they will likely tell their networks as well.
While receiving grants from philanthropic foundations is great, it will not always be capable of providing you with the manpower you need. For all you know, the volunteers you hire may even have experience in organizing fundraising events for nonprofit organizations, to which will help you in more ways than you know. Apart from that, having a volunteer program is like a testing ground as well. If these volunteers have the potential to be employed in your organization, it’s a good thing you were able to get the assurance of their performance before officially hiring them into your organization.