Charity volunteers – how to retain them

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Concerned about your charity volunteer attrition rates? Adrian Sargeant delves into the research to discover ways to retain these essential people.

 

Charity volunteeringMany nonprofits struggle to retain their charity volunteers, with turnover rates of over 100% being reported by some organisations in the course of a typical year. As with donor attrition, the rapid loss of volunteers comes at a cost. Resources will be wasted on the recruitment process itself, the quality of service to the donating public will suffer and the organisation’s reputation will be hit as potentially dissatisfied volunteers tell a great many of their friends about the poor quality experience they endured.

Interestingly, research tells us that charity volunteers are most likely to quit after three months, six months or 12 months. It seems this occurs because they begin their work in a honeymoon stage of enthusiasm, but regress to ‘post honeymoon blues’ after gaining some experience. After longer periods of time charity volunteers are likely to quit because they…

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