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Engage Library

For decades, running a strong volunteer program meant clearly defining roles and responsibilities, sourcing the right volunteers and managing consistent project delivery. Today, the same considerations remain true, but the practices of delivering them in a modern setting have…
October 2020
Thirty-five years ago, Susan J. Ellis published an article in the Journal of Voluntary Action (now Nonprofit and Voluntary Sector Quarterly) entitled “Research on volunteerism: What needs to be done.” Ellis mused – in 1985 – that the only subject at that time that seemed to…
July 2020
This special issue devoted to e-Volunteerism’s Co-Founder Susan J. Ellis begins with a feature by Rob Jackson, the Journal’s new Editor-in-Chief. In this article, Jackson reflects on the legacy of Ellis and her life’s work, including how and why she started the profession’s…
July 2020
In this Voices, co-editor Tracey O’Neill talks with leaders of volunteers about the value of podcasts, those video/audio presentations that now cover every topic around the world and can be accessed via computers, cell phones, and tablets. Through her interviews with…
April 2020
Now more than ever, technology is playing an all-encompassing role in keeping nonprofits and volunteer programs going. While volunteer-matching apps and social media platforms have been around for a while, social distancing takes us to a whole other level in terms of technology…
April 2020
In this Voices, Tracey O’Neill revisits a topic that definitely deserves a review: What does the field think about credentialing? O’Neill gathers diverse opinions from volunteer management colleagues across the globe, focusing specifically on the CVA (Certification in…
October 2019
“After 12 years at the helm of a leading faith-based volunteering charity, I have decided to retire.” So writes Leonie Lewis, MBE, who has been Director of the Jewish Volunteering Network (JVN) since its inception in the UK in 2007. Having recently chosen to retire from her…
April 2019
In this Voices, co-editor Tracey O’Neill reviews a new book called The Disruptive Volunteer Manager by well-known volunteer manager Meridian Swift. As O’Neill explains, the new book lays out six steps to increase awareness of volunteers and to try and elevate volunteerism by…
April 2019
With technological advances growing at an ever-frantic pace, questions and concerns have been raised about the intersection of technology and volunteers. Are technological advances such as robotics, artificial intelligence, drones, and computers likely to displace many…
April 2019
Points of View authors Rob Jackson and Erin R. Spink were recently inspired by a Canadian article that highlighted the coming funding shortfalls due to an escalating reliance on the services non-profits offer. In this Points of View, they take a page from this article to…
October 2018
After more than 30 years of working directly in a variety of volunteer leadership roles, Andy Fryar now works with volunteer involving organisations to assist them in establishing cloud-based software solutions. Along the way, Fryar has come to recognise that many volunteer…
July 2018
If you find your way to e-Volunteerism and then to this article, you have done some things which many of us readily take for granted and increasingly do without thinking.  For a start, you will have some kind of electronic device which you know how to use and connect to the…
January 2017
Voluntas is a pilot project underway in New South Wales, Australia, that aims to test whether early intervention when conflict begins among volunteers can lessen the burden of destructive conflict. The pilot uses the services of volunteer facilitators trained in mediation to…
July 2016
Inquiry-based interpretation is a growing educational trend in zoos across the country.  But training zoo docents to become familiar and comfortable with this practice can prove challenging. It is critical to use existing research to develop an inquiry-focused training module…
July 2016
As every volunteer manager knows, your mission is BIG! It takes a lot of creativity, funding, and work from staff and dedicated volunteers to accomplish. But what happens when those very volunteers detract from your efforts instead of supporting them? Are some volunteers in a…
April 2016
Volunteers are the backbone of our communities, a fact that we all appreciate every day on the job while coordinating and managing volunteer programs. This article is about one volunteer manager’s successful experience helping a valued community member with special needs…
April 2016
Retiring Baby Boomers, life-long tech users, and skilled professionals! Oh, my! What’s a volunteer administrator to do? It may seem overwhelming to keep up with all the recent trends in volunteering – especially when trends force us to change or adapt how we recruit and work…
October 2015
“People just don’t commit like they used to!” is a common complaint of leaders of volunteer engagement who find themselves confronting the new trend of shorter-term volunteers. Many of us struggle these days with recruiting volunteers – or, at least, the kind of long-term…
October 2015
This much is clear: Volunteer Centres are vital to build and sustain local and regional volunteer ecosystems. Often seen as the “one-stop” help for individuals looking to get involved in the community, Volunteer Centres are not only remarkable at surviving funding and policy…
April 2014
The volunteer base has changed over time. It has moved from volunteers with long-term commitments to welcoming the diversity of youth, families, baby boomers and employer-supported volunteers – and required us all to adapt our volunteer management practices.  In this Research to…
April 2011