Preparing for Volunteers

There are many things to do before you ever recruit the first volunteer.  The resources here discuss the many things that are needed to prepare your organization.


See also: Policies

21st-Century Networks, Sarah J. Butler
Barriers to Preventing Abuse, John Patterson with Charles Tremper and Pam Rypkema, Nonprofit Risk Management Center.
Internal Marketing, Izabella Csordas, pp. 97-99, Foundation for Museums and Visitors, Hungary
Retention of Volunteers, Susan J. Ellis and Rob Jackson, Energize, Inc.
The Rise of the Knowledge Philanthropist, Colleen Kelly & Lynda Gerty, pp. 28-29, Vantage Point
Volunteer/Staff Ratios and Relations, Sarah Jane Rehnborg, et. al., pp. 28-30, RGK Center for Philanthropy & Community Service

Produced by the National Centre for Volunteering (UK), this booklet examines how developing the right policies leads to a more diverse volunteer corps.

, 2002, pp. 20

Tobi Johnson of VolunteerPro provides this free guide for the newcomer to volunteer management -- lots of good context and tips.

, 2016, pp. 57

Created as a "A Guide for South Australian Local Government" by the City of Salisbury in SA, this contains many useful tips for determining potential risks in volunteer work, even if the legal issues discussed will not be the same in all locations. Also suggests ways to create volunteer position descriptions from a health and safety perspective.

, 2014, pp. 60
Nonprofit Risk Management Center

Major source of information and publications on all aspects of risk and liability for nonprofit organizations in the U.S. (much is relevant in other countries, too).  Volunteer risk management is one of their featured areas:

Print and e-Books in Our Store

Book cover

A compendium of the best techniques for leading volunteer engagement, proven to work in a myriad of settings.

Book cover

Demystifies risk management and sets out in plain language what every volunteer program needs to know about this sometimes scary, always critical subject.

Book cover

A walk-through of the importance of developing policies for and about volunteers, with clear examples and templates.

Book cover for From the Top Down

Outlines the key executive decisions necessary to lay the foundation for successful volunteer involvement: policies, budgeting, staffing, employee-volunteer relationships, legal issues, cost and value of volunteers, and more.