Join Us for a Week-Long FestiVOL

Volunteering is the best, right? So this year, in honor of National Volunteer Week, we’ve decided to celebrate volunteers and the difference they make by launching a spectacular week-long FestiVOL – and we want YOU to join us!

Why FestiVOL?

Join VolunteerMatch for FestiVOL, a week-long celebration of volunteering in honor of National Volunteer Week.At VolunteerMatch, we hope FestiVOL will help you, your company and your employees make the most of National Volunteer Week. Whether it‘s appreciating your volunteers, demonstrating impact, or building out new projects, VolunteerMatch will be providing tips on how you can increase engagement.

Each day we will release three “nuggets” just for you: One piece of inspiration, one piece of knowledge, and one action. We hope you’ll share these with your community members, learn from them, and encourage everyone to get more involved.

Join FestiVOL!

FestiVOL will run from April 6-12. You can see all the nuggets as we release them on the FestiVOL landing page.

You and your employees can join FestiVOL by following on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram with the hashtag #FestiVOL. We hope FestiVOL gives you the energy, passion and ideas to make our communities stronger and our world happier all year long!

How will YOU celebrate volunteering during FestiVOL?

Gorgeous FestiVOL graphic designed by Katy Roby.

Continue reading

Family, Community, Country Music and Volunteering

CMT One Country volunteer engagement programWhen someone says, “country music,” usually volunteering does not come to mind. But the two have more in common than it would initially seem, for at the core of both lie two integral values: family and community.

CMT One Country is dedicated to connecting its viewers to local volunteer opportunities. Founded on those very values of family and community, CMT, a subsidiary of MTV and Viacom, broadcasts popular country artists and music programs. Its “One Country” volunteer program encourages its national audience of almost 100 million homes to take action and give back to their communities.

For the past seven years, CMT One Country has used VolunteerMatch Solutions to make finding national volunteer opportunities as easy as possible.

Learn more about how CMT One Country engages its fans as volunteers and encourages the values of family and community using VolunteerMatch tools.

Continue reading

The Top 13 Volunteering and CSR Posts of 2013

Happy New Year from VolunteerMatch! Here are the top 13 blog posts about employee volunteering and CSR from 2013.A year is a long time, especially in the quickly growing world of employee volunteering and corporate social responsibility (CSR). Before we all jump into 2014, take a look at what resonated most with our audiences in 2013.

Share these blog articles with colleagues and friends to start the New Year off with some new knowledge, some good advice, and a bang!

13. Some Advice for the Impending Google Reader Shutdown

12. Okay, So Maybe Millennials ARE Interesting…for CSR

11. 10 Top CSR and Employee Engagement Blogs

10. Meet the 2013 VolunteerMatch Client Summit Speakers: Jessica Johnson and Savannah Clark

9. Exploring Our Impact: Workplace Volunteering Grows in 2012

8. Mapping the DNA of Effective Employee Volunteer Programs

7. TEDx and Creativity: How To Transform Corporate Culture

6. How Most People Prefer to Volunteer (It Might Surprise You)

5. The “Why” Behind Employee Volunteer Time Off

4. Tulsa Community College Helps Students Afford School Through Volunteering

3. Announcing HelpBridge: Microsoft’s New Disaster Response App Integrates with the Largest Volunteer Engagement Network

2. So You Want to Work in CSR…

1. How Flash Volunteer is Using VolunteerMatch APIs to Expand Its Reach

Happy New Year!

Continue reading

Legos, Karl Marx and Employee Volunteering

What do mountain climbing, legos, Karl Marx and employee engagement have in common?

Before watching this video, we would have said: Absolutely nothing. But now, behavioral economist Dan Ariely has us convinced. In his TED Talk from TEDxRiodelaPlata in October, 2012, Ariely addresses the question: What really motivates us to work? (Hint: It’s not money.)

Watch Ariely’s talk below:

httpvh://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5aH2Ppjpcho

At VolunteerMatch, we work with more than 170 corporate partners to motivate their employees to work better – for their businesses and for the world. The employee volunteer programs we facilitate provide meaning that might otherwise be lacking in the day-to-day of many people’s jobs. And the work accomplished through volunteer activities and pro bono projects fosters in the employees pride in their work and their companies.

What do you think about the connection between employee volunteering, motivation, happiness and productivity at work?

Continue reading

How Community Volunteering Happens in Addis Ababa & in Cyberspace

This month, our Volunteer Spotlight featured Sasha Daucus, who has found a way to bring her love for technology and passion for volunteering together in her role as online community host for the TechSoup Forums. Her story shows that volunteering can be about something you love, and can be even more fulfilling when it relates to your everyday work as well.

The story of another TechSoup Forum volunteer, however, takes this idea of virtual volunteering even farther; all the way to Africa to be exact.

Peter Cheer moderates the Public Computing, ICT4D (ICT for Development) and Tech4Good TechSoup forums in his off time. When he’s not helping Ethiopian health organizations with IT setup and training, he is posting useful resources, sharing inspiring stories relating to technology and development, and answering questions for TechSoup’s interactive forum community.

Peter Cheers: Volunteering in Africa and Online

Peter first joined the TechSoup forums as a user, while working for the Scottish Museums Council. “[I] was more inspired by what I could learn from the forums than what I could contribute,” he explains. It wasn’t until he moved to Kenya and began working with the Kenya Society for the Blind that he felt he had something to bring to the forums himself. Now he’s a forum expert on all things assistive technology software and technology for development.

Peter is currently living in Ethiopia on a Voluntary Service Overseas (VSO) placement with the Addis Ababa HIV / AIDS Prevention & Control Office and the Ethiopian Midwives Association, helping both with IT setup and training. He has previously worked as a volunteer in Kenya and the UK, in both IT and non-tech related roles.

In addition to opportunities in your own community, sites like VolunteerMatch make it easy for you to find ways to volunteer virtually as well. And, as Peter’s story shows us, you can volunteer from literally anywhere.

For Peter, the TechSoup forum provides him with a sense of community in his otherwise remote and challenging, yet also rewarding, work in Africa. Through volunteering virtually in the forums, he has found a sense of community that has eluded him because of the nature of his local work. In the TechSoup forums, Peter is able to interact with other tech-savvy people and engage the virtual community on subjects that are often beyond the knowledge and resources of the African communities he works with.

Virtual volunteering is a great opportunity for your employees to get involved with a great cause and become a part of a unique community. Are you helping your employees get engaged with online communities through virtual skilled volunteering? Share your stories in the comments below.

Stephanie Rosenburg is a Communications & Social Media Intern at VolunteerMatch. You can reach her at srosenburg@volunteermatch.org and follow her at @smrosenburg.

(Image by Irene2005 on Flickr.)

Continue reading