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Volunteer Management in Special Settings

The materials here apply the generic principles of volunteer management to special settings.  See bolded key words to identify each type of setting.

Books on this topic

See also Faith-based Service

Articles and book excerpts on this subject

Free electronic books for special settings

Best Practices and Recruiting and Retention Resource Guide
for Healthcare Volunteers
by the American Hospital Association Committee on Volunteers (51-pg. PDF, 2003).

Changing the Face of Social Services – volunteers adding value in service delivery, 60-page PDF from the National Centre for Volunteering in England (2003)

Conservation of an overlooked resource – Volunteers for Volunteer Managers in Conservation

The Hidden Workforce: How to Make the Most of Volunteers in Child- and Youth-Serving Agencies by the New England Network for Child, Youth& Family Services -- a 64-page toolkit that takes a clear-eyed look at what volunteers can really do in child- and youth-serving agencies, and how to get started growing or improving your own volunteer program, whatever your setting (2010).

Promising Practices for Volunteer Administration in Hospitals, from the Canada Volunteerism Initiative and York University

Succeeding with Volunteer Transportation by Dennis Studebaker (this is the complete text of an 88-page book, now out of print, published in 1990 by Heritage Arts)

Successful Strategies for Recruiting, Training, and Utilizing Volunteers: A Guide for Faith- and Community-Based Service Providers, Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (2005, 56 pages)
Focuses on prevention, treatment, and recovery services for substance abuse and mental illness; however, the principles described apply to any field and may help organizations understand how to start and manage a successful volunteer program.

Volunteer Management for Animal Care Organizations, by Betsy McFarland for the Humane Society of the United States (2nd ed., 127 pgs., 2005) -- released for free distribution, July 2011

Working with Volunteers and Managing Volunteer Programs in Health Care Settings, from the National Health and Medical Research Council of Australia (2003)

Web sites on this subject

Best Friends Animal Society
Archive with articles and shared advice from site users on many topics for animal shelters and protection agencies, including a section on volunteers.

Community Literacy of Ontario Volunteer Management
Resource Center
Articles and resources on managing volunteers in literacy programs.

Generic Mentoring Program Policy and Procedure Manual
Free, comprehensive manual from the National Mentoring Center to help any mentoring program streamline operations, address risk management issues, and ensure quality and consistency of services. See their other online learning resources at

Help Your Hospice
UK site with descriptive information about hospice volunteering, from the volunteer's perspective.

Hospice Volunteer Training
Links to resources specifically on hospice volunteering.

Library Developments
Page of volunteer management resources for libraries.

Managing Event Volunteers
Australia Sport Commission's guide to working effectively with volunteers for large special events.

MENTOR/National Mentoring Partnership
Solid information on all aspects of starting and running a mentoring program.

National Center for State Courts Volunteer Resource Guide
Guides, manuals and links for court volunteer programs.

PTO Today Archives
Wide range of articles for leaders of parent/teacher groups.

Sanchez Elementary School Online Mentoring Program
This resource was developed by Jayne Cravens for Sanchez Elementary School in Austin, Texas through the Charles A. Dana Center at the University of Texas at Austin. This online mentoring program is no longer operational but these Web materials have been preserved to help other schools develop their own online mentoring programs.

School Volunteer Management Handbook
This handbook is a resource guide for VISTAs in charge of managing school-based volunteers. Although much of this handbook is site specific (relating only to Sanchez Elementary School in Austin, TX), all of the information should be helpful to anyone managing a school-based volunteering program or working with volunteers in general.

Self-Help Sourcebook Online
All sorts of information for running a self-help group, including links to existing groups and tips for effective online support.

The Social Animal
Practical social media and Web 2.0 advice for animal welfare advocates, but applicable to all and with many volunteer-related tips.

Sustrans Volunteer Rangers
Volunteer Rangers act as the “eyes and ears” for UK local authorities, ensuring that National Cycle Network routes are kept safe and attractive for cyclists, walkers and wheelchair users.

Virtual Volunteering Project Archive
The Service Leader Web site was revised in 2003 and older information--particularly about online mentoring-- was removed.  Energize has received permission to archive these pages here.

Portal Web site to give people to access to public sector volunteer positions, especially in US Federal government agencies, with information all those agencies and about government volunteering.

Volunteers in Police Service (VIPS)
National site of the US Dept. of Justice connecting local volunteer programs assisting the police.

Wisconsin 4-H Volunteer Development and Management
Resources for 4-H volunteer leaders, ideas for recruitment, training, utilizing, and recognizing volunteers.

Youth Justice Board - Mentor Support and Supervision

Practical tips from this British program, applicable to all sorts of volunteer work.

Complete books online by Judge Keith J. Leenhouts, JD
How to start and run a volunteer program in a court setting.

Relevant Hot Topic essays


For information on this topic specifically relating to the Australasian region please visit our friends at OzVPM :
See various setting topics at




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