Embracing Volunteers | Webinar Series

Arts organizations have to continuously seek people with skills, passion and experience and turn them into volunteers. With greater understanding of the dynamics between recruitment, retention and recognition and how to develop more creative, engaging roles for volunteers, you will be leaders in accomplishing the mission and work of your organization.

Funded by the Department of Canadian Heritage, the 3-part webinar series titled “3 R’s - Recruitment, Retention and Recognition”, led by Donna Lockhart, has been designed for presenters who want to know more about best practices, get tips and learn some strategies in volunteer management.

// To access all the files as well as the recorded webinar on each topic, please click on the hyperlinked titles below //

#1: Recruitment of Volunteers: “Is it more than just asking?”

This session explores what recruitment or acquisition of volunteers means; why position descriptions are vital to success; and, some recruitment strategies that work. You learn more about the shifts that have taken place in volunteerism and how by re-defining roles for volunteers, your recruitment might just be more successful.

“Position Descriptions - my “aha!” moment. Seems to obvious, but once you have the position description, it is so much easier (in theory) to figure out the target audience, and where to post it to meet/appeal to the target audience…”

“Love the element of youth recruitment in today’s discussion; we are trying to attract more youth.”

#2: Retention of Volunteers:  “A Return on Investment (ROI) Approach”

This session focuses on factors you can control and factors you cannot; a look at both short and long term retention; and 4 retention strategies you can implement tomorrow.

“This webinar has shown us that we need to work diligently to cultivate new volunteers with the understanding that they may not be as long term as we have experienced.”

 “My “aha” moment was the idea of treating volunteerism as a core strategic function, not as an add-on. Until that moment, I was unaware that I was treating it as an add-on, but it was true. Volunteerism needs to be a core strategic function in order to devote the attention required to build a volunteer base for a non-profit organisation to rely on…”

#3: Recognition of Volunteers:  “Putting a new spin on certificates, mugs and 5 year pins!”

This session explores the key questions to ask when setting up a recognition program; why money is not the issue to successful appreciation; and using the example of baby boomers as volunteers, ideas of formal and informal recognition that have emerged from recent research are shared.  

“Definitely made me look beyond the usual model”

“I absolutely did take a lot out of it and I now realize that recognition is so very important in retaining our volunteers.”

Donna Lockhart is a trainer, consultant and partner in The RETHINK Group. Her mission is to help organizations “attract, support and expand” their volunteer resources. For over 35 years, she has partnered with hundreds of non-profit organizations to help develop volunteer engagement strategies; provide training; and, develop resources for volunteers and staff. Learn more about Donna

Funded by the Department of Canadian Heritage, this 3-part training was presented in February 2015, as part of a webinar series for arts presenters hosted by Ontario Presents and Atlantic Presenters Association.

Why webinar?

“[Adobe webinar platform] is an excellent tool. Makes participation much easier, since you can do it from any location with a phone or internet connection.”

“Easy. Neat platform with tools for immediate feedback/participation”

“Love downloadable tools that are included!”

“The webinar format is excellent - no long drives to a meeting!!!”

“Keep these webinars coming. I am enjoying them all. It is hard when you are in a small town to have access to these kind of seminars. Thank you for presenting them.”

“Great experience. I would definitely participate in more webinars of interest to me. Thanks for the energy you put into hosting it, and making sure it reaches the far corners of this country!!!”