In honor of International Volunteer Managers Day, we celebrate the achievements of the leaders of volunteers. These are the individuals recruit, train, and engage volunteers throughout the year. They also troubleshoot countless issues that arise, plan stellar events, and implement ways to show appreciation for the service of committed individuals. Volunteer Managers are essential to every organization that utilizes volunteers and NOVEMBER 5TH is a day to recognize that. 

Here are some ideas to help your volunteer management teams feel appreciated:

Budget friendly

  • Write a thank you email and CC a supervisor.  A lot of work volunteer managers do goes unnoticed. You can help by writing your volunteer management team a thank you note for a job well done and copying their supervisor. Be specific about the ways that they encourage you in your role. 
  • Write a card. Writing a thank you card is always a great way to tell someone how much their efforts have made an impact. Deliver it by hand or mail it to their organization’s mailing address.
  • Small Gifts. Items like a packaged baked good from Starbucks or a small potted succulent are easy ways to say Thank You. Note that some volunteer management teams may not be able to accept gifts over a certain amount, so be sure to check first.

Group gifts

  • Sponsor a lunch. Many jobs don’t allow staff members to accept gift cards. Instead, join together with other volunteers and sponsor a lunch. To keep things inclusive, find a day that all volunteer management members are present, or sponsor several days so everyone can participate. 
  • Make a financial donation in honor of the volunteer team. Look for ways to publicly appreciate your volunteer team with a financial donation. At the Zoo, there is a brick recognition program where personalized messages are on display just outside the entrance. 

Tips for Volunteers

  • Fulfill your commitment. The easiest way to love on your volunteer manager is to do your job and do it well. If you have extra time, you can also take on another task that you notice needs to be done.
  • Communicate effectively. Make a volunteer manager’s job easy and communicate effectively! Make sure you read the whole email and answer all the questions. Reach out early when you cannot make your commitment, and keep your volunteer managers informed when something changes.

However you choose to celebrate, we hope that you take time to say THANK YOU to the volunteer management teams in your life.