This month, we’re showing our gratitude for a group of people our schools cannot do without — volunteers! Our family, parent, and community volunteers make a tremendous difference in our schools, and we don’t know what we’d do without them! As School Advisory Councils work to achieve various goals, there are ways that SACs can also use volunteers at their schools. This month’s SAC Tip of the Month gives some ways that your SAC can utilize and mobilize volunteers at your school!
- Create a list of potential volunteers and inform them. Rather than reaching out only to individuals or to the same few people all of the time, if you have a group of contacts who you can reach out to in one stride, you can message them all in one go and see who wants to volunteer for various opportunities that may come up. Sometimes, family and community members might want to volunteer but not know the specific ways that they can help, so informing them of different ways to be involved can be very helpful.
- Create or utilize technology to organize volunteers. Consider creating a Google group or email list to technologically gather volunteers into the same place. You could also utilize your school’s existing social media pages to post volunteer opportunities. This can be a quicker and easier way to spread the word about volunteering opportunities to a larger group of people.
- Create a survey or keep a list of volunteers’ hobbies and skills. Our volunteers are diversely talented and have a plethora of hobbies and skills that we may not even be aware of. Send out a survey to families to ask them what they enjoy doing or what are they good at. Having a list of people’s abilities and hobbies can help you ask specific people for specific types of tasks in the future.
- Create a volunteer space at school. If it’s possible, try to create a space (however small or big) for volunteers to take ownership over. Give volunteers a space where they can complete tasks, sign in or collect materials that they might need. Your SAC might even post information and news about future ways to help out in that space. Having a centralized place can draw more volunteers to know where to go in order to get more involved.
- Thank and encourage your volunteers. One of the best ways to encourage people to keep coming back to help is to remind them that the services they provide are greatly appreciated and make a big difference! Find small and big ways to thank your volunteers all throughout the year, so they know how invaluable they are!
Your SAC can play a big role to help utilize and mobilize parent and community volunteers. Your SAC can discuss ways to spread information in centralized ways to potential volunteers in order to get as many people involved at your school as possible! When it comes to volunteering, the more the merrier, and your SAC can play a very encouraging role to spread the word!