In the midst of chaos — Thank You Thursdays


How and when to thank volunteers during stressful times Written by: Anna Spady, When have you most needed to hear someone say thank you? For me, it’s when I’ve been so crunched, overwhelmed and stressed that I couldn’t remember why I was bothering to put one foot in front of the other. Lots of […]

May 15, 2014

Making time for time management

Managing Volunteers

Five secrets from productive people to increase efficiency. I have never been a volunteer manager, but I love to talk shop with them because we understand one another’s worlds. Their job, like mine as a project manager, is to be the ultimate mom. Part liaison, part strategy, more than a little administration and lots of […]

May 6, 2014

Volunteers finding new ways to barn raise


“I’m so disappointed with the way the world has become,” my grandfather told me. “I don’t know what happened to the values of my generation.” Do people even care or help anymore? I’ve asked myself this several times since that talk and a more jaded part of me agrees with him. Nowadays, I think a […]

April 25, 2014

How to avoid burnout, getting bitter


Give what you can with joy. When you get bitter, it’s time to stop. Written by: Anna Spady She was telling me how much she loved her cause, how needed it was, how much she believed in it and above all, how utterly and totally exhausted she was. As she admitted her exhaustion, her eyes […]

April 17, 2014

National Volunteer Week: Why We Care


“You lie down. You sing. You dance. You give me chocolate cake. Now sleep!” I watch as my mother subjects herself to the every whim of the four-year-old in front of her. The tiny waif girl stands with a hand on each miniscule hip, pretending to scowl authoritatively at my lovely mother, who meanwhile is […]

April 9, 2014

Put meaning in volunteering

Managing Volunteers

I was reading a great blog post by Donald Miller the other day about making ordinary life more meaningful. Actually, it made me question my own volunteer experiences. My volunteering has almost always been comprised of fairly mundane tasks: data entry, cleaning, watching children, etc. Yet some experiences have felt inexplicably more meaningful than others. […]

March 28, 2014

How to Say Thank you With a Pineapple

Managing Volunteers

Most of us say thank you for common courtesies like holding the elevator and passing the salt. But a thank you can mean much more. Lance Armstrong sent his space suit engineering team a thank you for keeping him “safe on the moon,” while Audrey Hepburn wrote her composer thanking him for making “Breakfast at […]

March 17, 2014

Best practices for engaging millennial volunteers

Managing Volunteers

Not all Millennials are hipsters. The millennial (M) generation, 18 to 34-years-old, often get a bad rep from older generations. The more-biased ones scoff that they are a tech-obsessed, scarf wearing, coffee snob group that has lost all sense of character and meaning. Ironically, Millennials contain an intense desire for meaning and dream of being […]

March 11, 2014

Finding Your Place


I have to be a hero to help. I have to be perfect to be useful. I have to have my act together. We might not realize we believe this, or that it holds us back from offering our help, but I’m convinced that too often it is.   Last week we introduced Tate Williams […]

February 28, 2014