Volunteering round-up: January 2016

What can we expect for volunteering in 2016?

There is plenty to look forward to in 2016, but there are also a few unanswered questions and likely challenges ahead. On the blog, Justin Davis Smith looks at what we can expect for volunteering in 2016. What are you hoping for in the year to come? Let us know in the comments section below.

New year, new volunteers?

We’ve been asking whether more people will come forward to volunteer, but we know that it is difficult to shift long-term volunteering patterns. Can behavioural science help? The Giving Time Project has been researching whether sharing information about how others have volunteered could help increase volunteering. Short answer? No, but on the blog, Justin Davis Smith explains how there are plenty more lessons to take from the research.

If you are thinking about how to recruit new volunteers, join us to learn how to recruit and retain volunteers through social media at our practical, interactive training for volunteer managers.

Big Volunteer

Looking to the year ahead, the Big Lottery Fund has launched the Big Volunteer campaign to get more people volunteering in their community. Big Lottery can help by giving grants (use our search tool to see what they have given to projects in your community), but it takes more than money to make the biggest difference. Big Volunteer hopes to inspire people to get involved and give their time to make a positive change.

Get involved via the Big Blog or by using the #BigVolunteer hashtag on Facebook and Twitter.

The future of voluntary action

Join us at the NCVO Annual Conference on 18 April in London to see how and why leaders are transforming their charities to help create the future for our sector. Covering key topics such as social action and employer supported volunteering, this conference will be an opportunity to learn, network and debate with other voluntary sector leaders.

Know how with Knowhow

Do you find Knowhow useful? Knowhow is our online knowledge bank, brimming with good advice shared by the voluntary sector, for the voluntary sector. We hope you find Knowhow as useful as Sarah.

We are always updating and uploading new information. Take a look at our new resources on:

If we are missing something or you have something to contribute, take a look at the “how-to” section of Knowhow, where you can request a how-to topic or share your experiences.

Training and support

Our volunteering consultancy development officer, Jarina, reflects on her year at NCVO and the work of the Volunteering Development Unit, and shares plans for 2016.

Coming up, we have got exciting new training opportunities, including:

  • Good practice in volunteer management 
  • Influencing for volunteer managers
  • Safeguarding for volunteer managers
  • Assessing the impact of your volunteers
  • Volunteering and the law

A person-centred approach

Inclusive, supported volunteering

A person-centred approach can help you involve volunteers who have a disability and/or additional needs. Take a look at our new guide on how to develop an inclusive supported volunteering scheme on Knowhow.

If you have direct, recent experience in involving people with disabilities in volunteering activities, HEAR would like to hear from you. Get in touch with HEAR, the London network of equalities organisations.

Thanking your volunteers

The Museum of London adopted a person-centred approach to thanking their volunteers and got it right. Patricia Kiss reflects on the lessons learnt from their thankyou event.

For more resources on thanking your volunteers, take a look at our blog post, Flowers aren’t for everyone, and our Knowhow information on keeping volunteers.

Employees as volunteers

How to engage employees in employer supported volunteering? Start by asking them what they would like to do. On the blog, Patricia Kiss outlines how companies can make employer supported volunteering work for them.

Book now for our training, an introduction to employer supported volunteering, on the 18 March in London.

What we’ve learnt

Did you know? More than one billion people volunteer globally.

NCVO head of research, Nick Ockenden, shares 10 things he learnt about volunteering and the voluntary sector in 2015. Read on the blog.

Save the date

Register your interest for this year’s Voluntary Sector & Volunteering Research conference. Jointly run by NCVO, IVR and VSSN, the conference will be held in Nottingham on 8-9 September. More details can be found on our website


The corporates are coming: five ways to make employer supported volunteering (ESV) work for your organisation

Want to know more about Employee Supported Volunteering (ESV)? Come to our Annual Conference workshop on 18 April 2016.

Find out more about NCVO Annual Conference 2016


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Emily was NCVO’s trainee volunteering development policy officer. She is interested in policy around volunteering, particularly diversity in volunteering, employability, volunteering in public services, and employer supported volunteering.

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