The holiday season is a popular time for volunteering – and nonprofit organizations know it. In order to stand out from the pack and attract dedicated volunteers who are a good fit for your organization, you need to get creative about how you engage all of the folks looking to help out between now and the end of the year.
By engaging volunteers in new ways, you increase your chances of finding people who will form a more authentic, lasting connection to your organization. So here are three ways to cut through all the volunteer recruitment noise this season to engage great supporters:
Everyone Loves Food
This is absolutely true – but to distinguish yourself from all the other organizations engaging volunteers to help with food-related tasks during the holidays, find volunteers who can do more than packing and serving. Appeal to Foodies to help with fundraising and cultural events, like this opportunity with Food Truck Festivals of New England, or create your own Top Chef-style challenge for amateur chefs like the African People’s Education and Defense Fund.
Appeal to Their Dramatic Sides
With all the good food, pretty lights and time off from work, volunteers want to have a little fun over the holidays. Engage the artists and performers in potential volunteers and give them a chance to shine in the spotlight. Whether it’s caroling during a holiday concert, face painting to cheer up sick children, building a holiday balloon arch, or transforming into a magical elf, tapping into volunteers’ creative energy will get them even more excited to help you during this busy time.
Give Them the Best Jobs
Too often we end up recruiting volunteers for the “leftover” tasks, while paid staff does the fun stuff, or the most directly rewarding stuff. This holiday season, engage volunteers for some of the best jobs at your organization, like calling donors just to say thanks, or attending fun concerts to raise awareness.
What are some creative ways your organization engages volunteers during the holiday season? Share in the comments below, and post your volunteer needs on Volunteermatch.org!