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How to Recruit the Best Volunteers

Volunteers play a vital role in thousands of organizations, charities and churches across the UK, working at major events, staffing support programs and fundraising. There are plenty of programmes which wouldn’t run without volunteers, but that doesn’t mean simply roping in anyone halfway willing to help.

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Effective volunteers need to be a good fit – the best person for the role on offer – and the recruitment stage is the best point to get this right. The following tips outline key ways you can attract volunteers who will tick all the boxes on your particular checklist.

Create a Clear Vision

Some volunteer roles offer opportunities for training and learning, while others need people able to walk right into a role, and get going) both are fine, but it is crucial to be clear about what you can offer and what you need. Volunteers need to feel they are useful and that their skills are recognised, so clear roles help to make that happen.

Recruit Widely

Mixing up the ways you recruit is the best way to reach thousands of more potential volunteers than you may have expected. Social media can be a blessing, especially if people share posts, but don’t ignore other options, like university and college support service departments, volunteer centres, newspaper ads and so on. Of course, if a basic DBS check is needed, this may need to guide your plans. It’s straightforward to get a basic DBS check performed at Carecheck or a similar company.

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Offer a Tangible Reward

Everyone has their own reasons for volunteering, which could be as simple as wanting to help others or be more focused – perhaps to get practical experience of something. By identifying what a volunteer is looking for, and making it clear that you can deliver, you will attract the best possible people.

Have a Clear Support System in Place

Volunteers may not be earning a salary, but they still need an organized induction, a clear job description, access to training (if relevant) and opportunities for reviews, supervision or feedback – whichever is appropriate in the circumstances. Arrange for someone to be the mentor or at least a contact point for a volunteer – someone who can help answer any questions that pop up. Basically, it makes sense to offer volunteers the same opportunities as paid staff have.

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