We all want a healthy community, a peaceful place where people live and work together in harmony. We all have ideas about how to make that happen. The big question is who will make that happen? Volunteers can.
Volunteers are necessary and extremely helpful for a healthy community. People from all walks of life, donate their time and effort to various causes, day and night, every day of the year. In a human services setting, agency clients and program participants usually cannot distinguish between volunteers and paid staff, unless nametags make those designations.
The more connected to a community people feel, the more likely they are to take responsibility for the community and feel pride and a sense of commitment. Mobilizing community resources and expanding capacity through volunteers also enhance an organization’s general profile, which can attract more volunteers, program participants, and funds.
Other potential benefits of using volunteers include the following:
- An increased ability to serve clients and respond to the needs of the community (e.g., increased services, expanded hours of operation, shorter wait times)
- Greater staff diversity (e.g., age, race, social background, income, education)
- Increased skill set
- Expanded community support