Common interests to recruit volunteers

If you’re looking for places to recruit volunteers, start with your interests.

Working for a volunteer-driven program in youth development can be quite a bit of work when it comes to recruiting volunteers. Many programs use a variety of methods to recruit volunteers, with some of the most common being radio and television advertisements (if the organization has the money for them), fliers, brochures, social media and recruitment presentations.

It takes time to put together the recruitment presentations to find caring, responsible adults to work with youth. Time is also needed to reach out and connect to different organizations and clubs before the recruitment presentation is scheduled. Here some ideas on some places you can go to recruit volunteers.

Have you thought about recruiting people who have the same common interests you have or looking for organizations and clubs that relate to your interests? If not, consider these questions as a starting point:

  • What are your talents or what are you good at?
  • What are your hobbies or what do you love to do?
  • What cause are you interested in?

If you’re not already a member of these organizations or clubs that come to mind when answering these questions, seek out the places where you could utilize your talents, participate in your hobbies or assist in a cause. Once you locate these organizations, make a connection and find a way to schedule a time to talk to the leaders about recruiting members to serve as volunteers for your program.

When you are part of the group, you have an advantage to relate to the audience you’re targeting for potential volunteers. You have a common interest and will be able to structure your recruitment speech to capture their attention.

Because of your talents or your interests in certain hobbies or causes, you can paint the picture in your recruitment presentation on how a volunteer can lead youth in certain projects or activities, or use them as a mentor. Recruiting volunteers with different talents and hobbies or interests in different causes can expand the type of projects and activities that are offered in programs like 4-H.

Youth workers who have the responsibility of recruiting volunteers have a great starting point for locating an audience for recruitment from their talents, hobbies or the causes they’re interested in.

For additional tips, see Michigan State University Extension’s tip sheet on “Targeted Volunteer Recruitment: Planning Your Presentation.”

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