When is National Volunteer Week? Visit our Recognition Event Calendar to find out!
April is National Volunteer Month, and the third week of April is celebrated
Volunteer Week. Organizations celebrate National Volunteer Week differently,
and over the past few years we've been privileged to help some great non-profit
organizations plan their volunteer appreciation events. The most important thing
to remember when planning your volunteer appreciation event is to make it
personal and meaningful to your volunteers.
Here are four ideas that have been a huge hit for National Volunteer Week:
1. Volunteer Appreciation Event. Many organizations host a
small reception or luncheon to recognize their volunteers during National
Volunteer Week. To make your event successful, use a theme to coordinate your
gifts, decorations, and messaging. Visit the Recognition Resource Center to read
the case study of a library that celebrated volunteer with an Essential
Piece theme luncheon. Read the volunteer
appreciation event case study.
Coordinate your National
Volunteer Week gifts and events with a theme, like Helping Hand.
2. Volunteer Appreciation Awards. When you have all your
volunteers together during National Volunteer Week, take advantage of the large
audience to recognize their hard work. Present all volunteers with a certificate
to thank them for their efforts, and present award
trophies to individuals with an outstanding number of service hours. Get
ideas for volunteer
certificate titles and verses.
3. Mail a Volunteer Thank You Gift. It can be difficult – if
not nearly impossible! – to get all your volunteers together at one time, but
it’s still vital to recognize their contributions. You can do volunteer
appreciation from afar by mailing a thank you card or small gift to your
volunteers’ homes. Each year, I work with a local civic theatre on their
National Volunteer Week gift which is mailed to 650 volunteers. This year, the
theatre is sending volunteers a fun Thanks
Sticky Note Booklet. The gift has an appreciation message all over it and
can be used by volunteers of all ages!
Choose a practical gift that
has an appreciation message for the biggest bang for your buck out of your
volunteer appreciation gift.
4. Share Public Volunteer Appreciation. Let the whole world
know about your awesome volunteers by shouting their praises! There are lots of
free and low cost ways to appreciate volunteers:
- Write a press release
about National Volunteer Week and how your organization is celebrating
- Send a letter to the editor about the difference your
volunteers make in the community.
- Mail letters to volunteers’ employers
that express how grateful you are that their employee contributes time to your
- Design a social media campaign on your star volunteers. Each
day during National
Volunteer Week, spotlight a different volunteer on your blog, Twitter feed,
and Facebook timeline.
Sharing the praises of your volunteers publically will let them know how much
you appreciate them during National