Over the years, we have been gathering information on volunteering trends which is re-produced in our annual report. This information covers what type of interests and activities a potential volunteer would like to do and what our current opportunities offer. The categories in the top five have always changed from year to year with some new additions and some ‘old favourites’ popping up…….. until this year when the top five remained the same, just juggling positions slightly. This caused us to have a further think about these figures and what they might mean….
Firstly, if we go back a couple of years, new categories were added to the national database ‘Do-It’ which is where we get our statistics from. When this happened, a new category ‘men’ popped up which seemed to be a popular choice to tick for both volunteers and opportunities; this intrigued us! Why do people tick that box? Do they want to volunteer with men? Is it a role more suitable for men? Perhaps you could enlighten us? It’s strange as ‘men’ is a regular feature in the top five whereas ‘women’ is not???
Anyway enough of all that, the purpose of this blog is to make you think……
Are you, as a volunteer, willing to accept a challenge and consider opportunities that you may not have thought of before?
Fundraising, for example, is high on the list for opportunities but does not feature highly as something that volunteers want to do. BUT have you thought about supporting a fantastic cause that could flounder without your efforts? As part of a fundraising group you could take part in all sorts of activities to raise money and find a wonderful new set of friends into the bargain.
Are you as an organisation offering the type of opportunity that interests people? If not, how can you make it more interesting or even change trends and get your categories in the top five?
Environment and outdoor opportunities are high on volunteers lists. Have you, as an organisation, thought of volunteers keeping your office garden/flower beds up to scratch and beautiful? (As I write this, I’m thinking our office could do with a volunteer for that!)
So get your thinking caps on, break out of the mould and we’ll see what next year’s figures bring…… 😊