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Engage Library

Feature Articles

Our feature articles are sourced from practitioners around the globe and seek to encourage new thinking, highlight innovative practice and stimulate debate in the world of effective volunteer engagement.

Many organizations now look specifically at the ways volunteers connect with them and how they can create new opportunities to involve volunteers of any age. This feature story explores a relatively new way to create more pathways to volunteering – “flexible volunteering.”   …
October 2008
The Maasai Weekly Market An innovative Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) project has taken place in rural Tanzania, involving UK-based project management company Buro Four and international development specialist MondoChallenge. In this feature article for e-Volunteerism…
October 2008
When Elizabeth Ellis was Volunteer Development Manager for the Girl Scouts of Minnesota and Wisconsin River Valleys, she managed, promoted and expanded their “Talent Match” database. This database listed the specific skills, preferred service locations, age group preferences and…
July 2008
Have you ever wondered what grantmakers and foundations look for when considering whether or not to give money to your group? In this excerpt from the new book, Grassroots Philanthropy: Field Notes of a Maverick Grantmaker, leading philanthropist Bill Somerville and writer Fred…
July 2008
How do you manage volunteers who don’t choose to be in your organization, those volunteers who often show up after being “bullied” into service? In other words, how do you manage the non-volunteer volunteer? In this e-Volunteerism feature story, volunteerism expert and author…
July 2008
Anticipating the huge number of Baby Boomers entering retirement in the next two decades, RSVP of North Central Iowa leaders decided to focus their attention on how to engage that cohort in volunteer service.  Attracting even a small percentage of the area’s approximately 22,000…
April 2008
Yad Sarah is an Israeli nationwide network of volunteers aiding needy, disabled and elderly people. The organization relies on volunteers and provides many essential services which are not covered by the government, such as lending medical equipment, day rehabilitation centers,…
April 2008
The wall between church and state in the United States often extends to a wall of separation, ignorance or avoidance between secular and faith-based volunteering. In this deeply personal article for e-Volunteerism, author Karen Kogler encourages the dismantling of that wall. She…
April 2008
In this third e-Volunteerism article in our Sabotage series, the authors turn their focus to those not-for-profit organizations that engage and deploy millions of volunteers globally. They list 10 universal actions that not-for-profits engage in, and argue that these actions…
January 2008
The term ‘engagement’ has gained appeal in both the for-profit and not-for-profit sectors to explain and understand relationship management with paid and voluntary staff. Yet little to no research has been done that focuses specifically on a volunteer’s engagement and how that…
January 2008
Homeless Connect is an initiative of the Brisbane City Council (Australia) to put over 300 homeless persons in contact with various service providers from housing, medical and legal organizations. This comprehensive one-day effort, staged in City Hall, also links service…
October 2007
They packed nearly 500 boxed meals, including sandwiches and homemade cookies. And when teenagers with autism spectrum disorders got together last summer to prepare meals for needy families, they proved that volunteering is for everyone. This e-Volunteerism feature article tells…
October 2007
Gwen Fujie calls it “martial arts ideas for the mind and mouth.”  In this article, Fujie explains why “Tongue Fu!” leads to cooperative communication and more peaceful relationships, both essential elements to success in volunteering. Based on author Sam Horn’s popular book by…
October 2007
In this quarter's issue, Harrison discusses her "logic model of decision making," designed to guide managers of volunteer resources through the steps and choices associated with managing virtual volunteering. This interview is a follow-up to Harrison’s interview in the last…
July 2007
Māori volunteerism, which has become embedded within the fabric of Māori communities, is a culture that derived from voluntary activity, introduced by immigrants in the early colonial settlements of Aotearoa/New Zealand.  Current literature, however, fails to provide…
July 2007
An interesting movement is emerging in volunteer management: Some managers of volunteers are limiting themselves to being responsible for only one part of their organization's volunteering scheme − the most 'traditional' part − while their organizations build new ‘pro bono’…
July 2007
In December 2005, an assault on three volunteer surf lifesavers led to violence and what are now known as 'the Cronulla riots.'  In the aftermath of these events, a number of parties (including the Australian Government, Sutherland Shire Council, Surf Life Saving Australia, Surf…
April 2007
After more than a decade of promoting virtual volunteering or online service as an important new development (which it is) for the volunteer field, it's time to step back and look at what is really happening as organizations put the theory into practice.  Yvonne D. Harrison,…
April 2007
What does a canned meat product called SPAM™ have to do with volunteer recruitment?  In this article, the authors explore the answer to this question by reviewing the key steps in volunteer recruitment, a process that helps remind an organization that it needs not only a clear…
April 2007
Should there be a significant difference in leadership ability between the head of the organization and the head of the volunteer program?  While there may be differences in authority, leadership is not restricted to the executive director or chair of the board, nor should it…
January 2007