The success of your project will depend heavily on the involvement of your participants, whether they be staff and/or volunteers, and how you manage them. Here are some tips for managing effectively:
Have staff and volunteers sign up in advance of your event so that you have a good sense of the size of your project and the kind of support you will need (equipment, supplies, food, and any other materials). Make sure you secure your headcount in time to receive your Day of Service T-shirts so your volunteers can wear them on the day of the event.
Have the volunteers fill out a sign-up sheet that includes their basic information (name, address, phone number(s), e-mail address, and any special skills they may have). Send out reminders to staff and volunteers in advance of the project.
Projects sometimes have "team leaders," who are specially trained staff or volunteers that manage groups of about 10 to 15 people each. These individuals will manage this small group within the project.
It is beneficial to organize a team meeting with all staff and volunteers the day prior to your event to iron out any last-minute logistical details, discuss talking points to prepare them for the media should they show up, and most importantly to get everyone on the same page and excited about the difference they are about to make.
We recommend that you distribute the T-shirts NALP has made available for you, as well as any other items that you would like your participants to wear. To receive your five free T-shirts, you will need to register your project. Food and beverage may also be brought in to help keep everyone hydrated and energized. You may be able to have it donated. At the conclusion of the event, you may distribute evaluations so participants can provide feedback on how to improve the experience in the future. Our sample evaluation form can help you collect this information. Lastly, do not forget to thank the volunteers.