Chat with us, powered by LiveChat Proposal for a Volunteer Program Imagine that you have recently accepted a position as the new Volunteer Administrator at Difference Today Nonprofit (hypothetical). Because of your expertis | WriteDen

Proposal for a Volunteer Program Imagine that you have recently accepted a position as the new Volunteer Administrator at Difference Today Nonprofit (hypothetical). Because of your expertis

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Week 6 – Assignment

Proposal for a Volunteer Program

Imagine that you have recently accepted a position as the new Volunteer Administrator at Difference Today Nonprofit (hypothetical). Because of your expertise, you have been hired to establish the volunteer program.

Develop a proposal describing your volunteer program and how you see yourself working as the Volunteer Administrator for Difference Today Nonprofit. This is an organization struggling with recruiting, retaining, and coaching volunteers. The organization is well-funded by a for-profit company and has experienced great success, but has never established a strong volunteer program. You are the first Volunteer Administrator that the organization has hired.

Your role will be to assess how to:

1. Create and manage the volunteer program.

2. Prepare the organization prior to launching the program.

3. Develop a strategy for recruiting and retaining volunteers.

4. Train and develop volunteers.

5. Develop policies and procedures for the volunteer program.

6. Evaluate the effectiveness of the volunteer program.

Your volunteer program proposal should include a section corresponding to each of the above six issues. Support your recommendations in each section, where appropriate, with research or examples from scholarly and credible professional sources.

In addition, since you are responsible for developing the comprehensive program to be rolled out in the next six months, a timeline for important functions and milestones should be included in its own section of the proposal. It will help to think in terms of what is in the best interest of Difference Today Nonprofit, the volunteers, and the support staff. 

Your paper should be 2,800-3,500 words (8-10 pages) in length, not including the title page, abstract, and reference sections. You should use and cite a minimum of 10 scholarly and credible professional sources in support of your proposal. All sections of your paper, including references, must follow APA guidelines.

Resources

Required References

Connors, T. D. (2011).  Wiley nonprofit law, finance and management series: volunteer management handbook: leadership strategies for success (Links to an external site.)  (2nd ed.). Hoboken, NJ: John Wiley & Sons. ISBN-13: 9780470604533. 

Chapter 15: Evaluating the Volunteer Program Chapter 16: Evaluating Impact of Volunteer Programs

Rosenthal, R. J., & Baldwin, G. (2015).  Volunteer engagement 2.0: Ideas and insights changing the world (Links to an external site.) . Somerset, NJ: John Wiley & Sons. ISBN-13: 9781118931882. Found in the University of the University of Arizona Global Campus ebrary. Chapter 20: Measuring the Volunteer Program

Recommended References

Buote, D. (2013, November 13). What is program evaluation? [Video file]. Retrieved from What is program evaluation?: A Brief Introduction (Links to an external site.) What is program evaluation?: A Brief Introduction

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. (2016, November 17). A framework for program evaluation [Web page]. Retrieved from  https://www.cdc.gov/eval/framework/index.htm

Required References

Connors, T. D. (2011).  Wiley nonprofit law, finance and management series: volunteer management handbook: leadership strategies for success (Links to an external site.)  (2nd ed.). Hoboken, NJ: John Wiley & Sons. ISBN-13: 9780470604533. 

Lee, Y., Won, D., & Bang, H. (2014).  Why do event volunteers return? Theory of planned behavior (Links to an external site.) . International Review on Public and Non-Profit Marketing, 11(3), 229-241. doi:10.1007/s12208-014-0117-0 

NCVO Knowhow Nonprofit. (2015, December 15). Volunteer policies [Web page]. Retrieved from  https://knowhownonprofit.org/people/volunteers/keeping/policy (Links to an external site.)

Pitney, N. (2013). Safeguarding volunteers with effective risk management. Retrieved from  https://nonprofitquarterly.org/safeguarding-volunteers-with-effective-risk-management/ (Links to an external site.)

Rosenthal, R. J., & Baldwin, G. (2015).  Volunteer engagement 2.0: Ideas and insights changing the world (Links to an external site.) . Somerset, NJ: John Wiley & Sons. ISBN-13: 9781118931882. Found in the University of the University of Arizona Global Campus ebrary.

United States Department of Labor. (n.d.). Fair Labor Standards Act Advisor. Retrieved from  http://webapps.dol.gov/elaws/whd/flsa/docs/volunteers.asp (Links to an external site.)

Volunteer Protection Act of 1997, 42 U.S.C. § 14501 (1997, May 19). Retrieved from  https://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/CRPT-105hrpt101/pdf/CRPT-105hrpt101-pt1.pdf (Links to an external site.)

Recommended References

Agovino, T. (2016).  The giving generation (Links to an external site.) HR Magazine, 61(7), 36-38, 40, 42, 44. Found in the University of the University of Arizona Global Campus ebrary.

Alfes, K., Shantz, A., & Saksida, T. (2015).  Committed to whom? Unraveling how relational job design influences volunteers' turnover intentions and time spent volunteering. (Links to an external site.)  Voluntas: International Journal of Voluntary & Nonprofit Organizations26(6), 2479-2499. doi:10.1007/s11266-014-9526-2

Buote, D. (2013, November 13). What is program evaluation? [Video file]. Retrieved from What is program evaluation?: A Brief Introduction (Links to an external site.) What is program evaluation?: A Brief Introduction

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. (2016, November 17). A framework for program evaluation [Web page]. Retrieved from  https://www.cdc.gov/eval/framework/index.htm (Links to an external site.)

Dunn, J., Chambers, S. K., & Hyde, M. K. (2016).  Systematic review of motives for episodic volunteering (Links to an external site.) . Voluntas: International Journal of Voluntary and Nonprofit Organizations, 27(1), 425-464. doi:10.1007/s11266-015-9548-4

Elias, J. K., Paulomi, S., and Seema, M. (2016).  Long-term engagement in formal volunteering and well-being: An exploratory Indian study (Links to an external site.) Behavioral Sciences 6(4), 20. doi:10.3390/bs6040020

Groble, P., & Brudney, J. L. (2015).  When good intentions go wrong: Immunity under the volunteer protection act (Links to an external site.) . Nonprofit Policy Forum, 6(1), 3-24. doi:10.1515/npf-2014-0001 

Kolar, D., Skilton, S., & Judge, L. W. (2016).  Human resource management with a volunteer workforce (Links to an external site.) . Journal of Facility Planning, Design, and Management, 4(1). doi:10.18666/JFPDM-2016-V4-I1-7300

Manetti, G., Bellucci, M., Como, E., & Bagnoli, L. (2015).  Investing in volunteering: Measuring social returns of volunteer recruitment, training and management (Links to an external site.) . Voluntas: International Journal of Voluntary and Nonprofit Organizations, 26(5), 2104-2129. doi:10.1007/s11266-014-9497-3

Mind Tools. (n.d.). SWOT analysis: Discover new opportunities, manage and eliminate threats [Web page]. Retrieved from  http://www.mindtools.com/pages/article/newTMC_05.htm (Links to an external site.)

Nesbit, R., Rimes, H., Christensen, R. K., & Brudney, J. L. (2016).  Inadvertent volunteer managers: Exploring perceptions of volunteer managers’ and volunteers’ roles in the public workplace (Links to an external site.) Review of Public Personnel Administration36(2), 164-187. doi:10.1177/0734371X15576409 

Pynes, J. E. (2013).  Training and career development (Links to an external site.) Human resources management for public and nonprofit organizations: A strategic approach (4th ed.). pp. 275-302. Somerset, NJ: Jossey-Bass. ISBN-13: 9781118398623. Found in the University of the University of Arizona Global Campus ebrary.

Riddle, R. (2016, November 14). 5 deadly sins of recruiting volunteers [Blog post]. Retrieved from  http://blogs.volunteermatch.org/engagingvolunteers/2016/11/14/5-deadly-sins-of-recruiting-volunteers/ (Links to an external site.)

Scott, C. L. (2016). 7 reasons nonprofit organizations have trouble recruiting volunteers [Video file]. Retrieved from 7 Reasons Nonprofit Organizations Have Trouble Recruiting Volunteers (Links to an external site.) 7 Reasons Nonprofit Organizations Have Trouble Recruiting Volunteers

Sellon, A. (2014).  Recruiting and retaining older adults in volunteer programs: Best practices and next steps (Links to an external site.) Ageing International, 39(4), 421-437. 

Studer, S. (2016).  Volunteer management: Responding to the uniqueness of volunteers (Links to an external site.) Nonprofit and Voluntary Sector Quarterly45(4), 688-714. doi:10.1177/0899764015597786

Stukas, A. A., Snyder, M., & Clary, E. G. (2016).  Understanding and encouraging volunteerism and community involvement (Links to an external site.) . The Journal of Social Psychology, 156(3), 243-255. doi:10.1080/00224545.2016.1153328 

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CHAPTER 16

Evaluating Impact of Volunteer Programs

R. Dale Safrit, EdD North Carolina State University

This chapter introduces and defines the closely related concepts of evaluation, im-pact and accountability, especially as applied to volunteer programs. The author dis- cusses four fundamental questions that guide the development and implementation of an impact evaluation and subsequent accountability of a volunteer program.

Evaluation in Volunteer Programs

The concept of evaluation as applied to volunteer programs is not new. As early as 1968, Creech suggested a set of criteria for evaluating a volunteer program and con- cluded, “Evaluation, then, includes listening to our critics, to the people around us, to experts, to scientists, to volunteers so that we may get the whole truth [about our pro- grams]” (p.2). This approach to evaluation was well ahead of its time since up until the past decade, when authors within our profession either only addressed the evaluation of holistic volunteer programs superficially (e.g., Brudney, 1999; Naylor, 1976; O’Con- nell, 1976; Stenzel & Feeney, 1968; Wilson, 1979) or not at all (e.g., Naylor, 1973; Wil- son, 1981). Even in the first edition of this text, fewer than four total pages of text were dedicated to the topic of evaluation within chapters dedicated to other traditional vol- unteer program management topics, including recruiting and retaining volunteers (Bradner, 1995), training volunteers (Lulewicz, 1995), supervising volunteers (Brud- ney, 1995; Stepputat, 1995), improving paid staff and volunteer relations (Macduff, 1995), monitoring the operations of employee volunteer programs (Seel, 1995), in- volving board members (Graff, 1995), and determining a volunteer program’s success (Stepputat, 1995).

However, for volunteer programs operating in contemporary society, evaluation is a critical, if not the most critical, component of managing an overall volunteer program and subsequently documenting the impacts and ultimate value of the program to the

389 Connors, T. D. (Ed.). (2011). The volunteer management handbook : Leadership strategies for success. John Wiley & Sons, Incorporated. Created from ashford-ebooks on 2022-05-20 10:20:43.

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target clientele it is designed to serve as well as the larger society in which it operates. As early as 1982, Austin et al. concluded that “Only through evaluation can [nonprofit] agencies make their programs credible to funding agencies and government authori- ties” (p. 10). In 1994, Korngold and Voudouris suggested the evaluation of impact on the larger community as one phase of evaluating an employee volunteer program.

The critical role of volunteer program impact evaluation in holistic volunteer man- agement became very apparent during the final decade of the twentieth century, and continues today (Council for Certification in Volunteer Administration, 2008; Merrill & Safrit, 2000; Safrit & Schmiesing, 2005; Safrit, Schmiesing, Gliem, & Gliem, 2005). While most volunteer managers understand and believe in evaluation, they most often have focused their efforts on evaluating the performance of individual volunteers and their contributions to the total program and/or organization. In this sense, evaluation has served an important managerial function in human resource development, the results of which are usually known only to the volunteer and volunteer manager. As Morley, Vinson, and Hatry (2001) noted:

Nonprofit organizations are more often familiar with monitoring and reporting such information as: the number of clients served; the quantity of services, programs, or activities provided; the number of volunteers or volunteer hours contributed; and the amount of donations received. These are important data, but they do not help nonprofit managers or constituents understand how well they are helping their clients. (p. 5)

However, as nonprofit organizations began to face simultaneous situations of stagnant or decreasing public funding and increasing demand for stronger account- ability of how limited funds were being used, volunteer program impact evaluation moved from a human resource management context to an organizational develop- ment and survival context. The volunteer administration profession began to recog- nize the shifting attitudes toward evaluation, and in the early 1980’s the former Association for Volunteer Administration (AVA) defined a new competency funda- mental to the profession as “the ability to monitor and evaluate total program results . . . [and] demonstrate the ability to document program results” (as cited in Fisher & Cole, 1993, pp. 187, 188). Administrators and managers of volunteer-based programs were increasingly called on to measure, document, and dollarize the impact of their programs on clientele served and not just the performance of individual volunteers and the activities they contribute (Safrit & Schmiesing, 2002; Safrit, Schmiesing, King, Villard, & Wells, 2003; Schmiesing & Safrit, 2007). This intensive demand for greater accountability initially arose from program funders (public and private) but quickly escalated to include government, the taxpaying public, and even the volunteers them- selves. As early as 1993, Taylor and Sumariwalla noted:

Increasing competition for tax as well as contributed dollars and scarce resources prompt donors and funders to ask once again: What good did the do- nation produce? What difference did the foundation grant or United Way alloca- tion make in the lives of those affected by the service funded? (p. 95)

According to Safrit (2010, p. 316), “The pressure on nonprofit organizations to evaluate the impact of volunteer-based programs has not abated during the first

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decade of the new [21st] century, and if anything has grown stronger.” With regards to overall volunteer management, evaluation continues to play an important role in the human resource management of individual volunteers; most volunteer managers are very familiar and comfortable with this aspect of evaluation in volunteer programs. However, today’s volunteer managers are less knowledgeable, skilled, and comfort- able with the concept of impact evaluation as only the first (if important) step in meas- uring, documenting, and communicating the effects of a volunteer program immediately on the target clientele served by the organization’s volunteers, and ulti- mately on the surrounding community.

A Symbiotic Relationship: Evaluation, Impact, and Accountability

In the overwhelming majority of both nonformal workshops and formal courses I have taught, participants will inevitably use three terms almost interchangeably in our discussions of evaluating volunteer programs. The three concepts are symbi- otically linked and synergistically critical to contemporary volunteer programs, yet they are not synonymous. The three terms are evaluation, impact, and accountability.

Evaluation

Very simply stated, evaluation means measurement. We “evaluate” in all aspects of our daily lives, whether it involves measuring (evaluating) the outside temperature to determine if we need to wear a coat to work, measuring (evaluating) the current bal- ance in our checking account to see if we can afford to buy a new piece of technol- ogy, or measuring (evaluating) the fiscal climate in our workplace to decide if it is a good time to ask our supervisor for a salary increase. However, for volunteer pro- grams, “evaluation involves measuring a targeted program’s inputs, processes, and outcomes so as to assess the program’s efficiency of operations and/or effectiveness in impacting the program’s targeted clientele group” (Safrit, 2010, p. 318).

The duel focus of this definition on a volunteer program’s efficiency and effective- ness is supported by contemporary evaluation literature. Daponte (2008) defined evaluation as being “done to examine whether a program or policy causes a change; assists with continuous programmatic improvement and introspection” (p. 157). Royse, Thyer, and Padgett (2010) focused on evaluation as “a form of appraisal…that examines the processes or outcomes of an organization that exists to fulfill some so- cial need” (p. 12). These definitions each recognize the important role of evaluation in monitoring the operational aspects of a volunteer program (i.e., inputs and processes) yet ultimately emphasize the program’s ultimate purpose of engaging volunteers to help bring about positive changes in the lives of the program’s targeted audience (i.e., outcomes). These positive changes are called impacts.

Impact

Contrary to popular belief, volunteer programs do not exist for the primary purpose of engaging volunteers merely to give the volunteers something to do or for supplying an organization with unpaid staff to help expand its mission and purpose. Rather,

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volunteer programs ultimately seek to bring about positive impacts in the lives of the targeted clientele the volunteers are trained to support either directly (through direct service to individual clients) or indirectly (through direct service to the service- providing organization). The latter statement does nothing to discount or demean the critical involvement of volunteers, but instead challenges a volunteer manager to con- tinually focus and refocus the engagement of volunteers on the ultimate mission of the sponsoring organization and the outcomes it seeks to bring about. In other words, it forces volunteer managers to identify and focus on the volunteer program’s desired impacts.

According to Safrit (2010):

Impact may be considered the ultimate effects and changes that a volunteer- based program has brought about upon those involved with the program (i.e., its stakeholders), including the program’s targeted clientele and their surrounding neighborhoods and communities, as well as the volunteer organization itself and its paid and volunteer staff. (p. 319)

This inclusionary definition of impact focuses primarily on the organization’s rai- son-d’être, and secondarily on the organization itself and its volunteers. Thus, it paral- lels and compliments nicely the earlier definition of evaluation as being targeted first toward the volunteer program’s targeted clientele, and secondly on internal processes and operations. Subsequently, volunteer managers must constantly measure the ulti- mate outcomes of volunteer programs, or stated more formally, evaluate the volunteer program’s impacts. However, merely evaluating a volunteer program’s impacts is not in itself a guarantee for the program’s continued success and/or survival; however positive, the knowledge gained by evaluating a volunteer program’s impacts are prac- tically meaningless unless they are strategically communicated to key leaders and de- cision makers connected to the sponsoring organization.

Accountability

Accountability within volunteer programs involves the strategic communication of the most important impacts of a volunteer program, identified through an evaluation pro- cess, to targeted program stakeholders, both internal and external to the organization. Internal stakeholders would include paid staff, organizational administrators, board members, volunteers, and the clientele served; external stakeholders include funders and donors, professional peers, government agencies and other legitimizers, and the larger community in which the organization operates.

Boone (1985) was the first author to describe the critical role of accountability in educational programs and organizations, and the previous definition is based largely on that of Boone, Safrit, and Jones (2002). Unfortunately, volunteer managers are sometimes hesitant to share program impacts even when they have identified them through an effective evaluation; they often consider such strong accountability as be- ing boastful or too aggressive. However, accountability is the third and final concept critically linking the previous concepts of evaluation and impact to a volunteer program’s or organization’s continued survival. Volunteer managers must accept the professional responsibility in our contemporary impact-focused society to

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proactively plan for targeted accountability, identifying specific key stakeholders and deciding what specific program impacts each stakeholder type wants to know. This targeted approach to volunteer program accountability will be discussed in more detail later in this chapter.

Four Fundamental Questions in Any Volunteer Program Impact Evaluation

Evaluation is a relatively young concept within the educational world; Ralph Tyler (1949) is often credited with coining the actual term itself, evaluation, to refer to the alignment between measurement and testing with educational objectives. And there is no dearth in the literature of various approaches and models for program evaluation. Some models are more conceptual and focus on the various processes involved in evaluation (e.g., Fetterman, 1996; Kirkpatrick, 1959; Rossi & Freeman, 1993; Stuffle- beam, 1987) while others are more pragmatic in their focus (e.g., Combs & Faletta, 2000; Holden & Zimmerman, 2009; Patton, 2008). However, for volunteer managers with myriad professional responsibilities in addition to but including volunteer pro- gram evaluation, I suggest the following four fundamental questions that should guide any planned evaluation of a volunteer-based program.

Question 1: Why Do I Need to Evaluate the Volunteer Program?

Not every volunteer program needs to be evaluated. This may at first appear to be a heretical statement coming from the author of a chapter about volunteer program eval- uation, and theoretically it is. Pragmatically, however, it is not. Many volunteer pro- grams are short term by design, or are planned to be implemented one-time only. In contrast, some volunteer programs are inherent with the daily operations of a volun- teer organization, or are so embedded within the organization’s mission that they are invisible to all but organizational staff and administrators. Within these contexts, a vol- unteer manager must decide whether the evaluation of such a program warrants the required expenditure of time and human and materials resources. Furthermore, one cannot (notice that I did not say, may not) evaluate any volunteer program for which there are no measurable program objectives. This aspect of Question 1 brings us again to the previous discussion of volunteer program impacts: What is it that the volunteer program seeks to accomplish within its targeted clientele? What ultimate impact is the volunteers’ engagement designed to facilitate or accomplish?

Any and all volunteer program impact evaluations must be based on the measur- able program objectives targeted to the program’s clientele (Safrit, 2010). Such mea- surable program objectives are much more detailed than the program’s mere goal, and define key aspects of the program’s design, operations, and ultimate outcomes. A measurable program objective must include each of the following five critical elements:

1. What is the specific group or who are the specific individuals that the volunteer program is targeted to serve (i.e., the program’s clientele)?

2. What specific program activities will be used to interact with the targeted clientele group (i.e., the intervention that involves volunteers)?

Four Fundamental Questions in Any Volunteer Program Impact Evaluation 393

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3. What specific change is the intervention designed to bring about within the tar- geted clientele group (i.e., program outcome or impact)?

4. What level of change or success does the program seek to achieve? 5. How wil

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