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August 28, 2015 4 Ways to Retain Your Nonprofit Volunteers


Volunteers want to be involved with your nonprofit because they believe in your cause and look for personal satisfaction in helping others. To the nonprofit, these volunteers play a huge role in filling labor needs to conduct events and/or helping with the day to day operations at your organization.  Loosing volunteers can create a big void. Training new volunteers or absorbing the task done by lost volunteers takes a big chunk of time and effort. Ensuring that your current group of volunteers is satisfied will increase your retention rate.

Here are four ways to keep your volunteers:

  1. Be Aware of the Volunteer’s Goals

The first and most important rule when it comes to recruiting nonprofit volunteers is to be particular about who you choose and in what roles you place them.  Some volunteers may want to do things that they do in their day to day work, while others may want to try other skills to broaden their knowledge and experience.  Make sure you place volunteers in the right place within your organization.

  1. Demonstrate their Value

A reason that many volunteers leave an organization they are passionate about is not necessarily because they lose their passion for it. Volunteers want to feel they are valued. They also want to know they are helping to make a difference and have a voice within the organization. One of the best ways to retain volunteers is to allow them to be heard and show them appreciation.

  1. Provide Training and Set Expectations

If you want to hold on to volunteers you need to foster a volunteer-oriented atmosphere. When a volunteer joins your team, give them proper training and set expectations, just like a paying job.  If a volunteer knows what is expected of them, they will thrive!

  1. Stay True to Your Values

Make sure you demonstrate to your volunteers your stance on ethics.  An unethical organization will alienate ethical volunteers. People want to be involved with organizations that adhere to high moral principles. By exhibiting those standards your nonprofit will acquire and retain the best people for your organization.

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