Giving Tuesday celebrates giving in all forms, not just money donations. So why not offer your supporters a fun way to give their time and energy to your cause? Create a special single-day volunteer event and give people a chance to put their hands to work and have a great time doing it.
#GivingTuesday—the brainchild of the staff at the 92nd Street Y in New York—is a global day of giving on the Tuesday after Thanksgiving. After the consumer spending of Black Friday and Cyber Monday, #GivingTuesday offers people a chance to take a breath and give back to their communities.
Host a Unique Project
Maybe your school garden needs a garden clean-up day. Or maybe you have a storage area that needs to be cleaned out or files that need to be sorted. Perhaps you need help with your end-of-the-year donation drive—stuffing and sending donation letters. You can create an all-day project with shifts or a project that just takes a few hours.
Whatever it is, make it a festive occasion. Decorate the space with holiday décor. If the job can be done sitting down (stuffing envelopes), watch a holiday movie together. Provide themed snacks or a meal, if it’s an all-day event. Enjoy the camaraderie of working together.
So how do you find people for your volunteer event? Post a notice on all your social media channels. Send out an email to your supporters. Contact businesses and organizations in your community to see if they want to sponsor a volunteer team to come and help you out. Maybe you can combine forces with another organization and host the event together. Invite your supporters to bring their families and friends to join you. Don’t forget to join the official #GivingTuesday movement so volunteers can find you!
Make it Appealing
Creating a fun event will go a long way toward attracting volunteers. Spicing it up with some added incentives will also help. Find a corporate sponsor to provide a special holiday coupon. Maybe you can enlist the clients your organizations supports to make thank you gifts for your volunteers: simple artwork, handmade cards, holiday ornaments, etc. Find some small token of appreciation that lets your volunteers know how important they are and how valuable their support is.
What is Your Experience?
Have you hosted a volunteer event for your organization? What worked and what didn’t? Which types of jobs lend themselves to a volunteer event? Which jobs are better left for staff to handle? Share your thoughts in the comments. We’d love to hear your ideas.