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People In Your Club

Micro Volunteering

Firstly, what is ‘Micro Volunteering’?

The National Council of Voluntary Organisations (NCVO) defines ‘Micro Volunteering’ as “bite-size volunteering with no commitment to repeat and with minimum formality, involving short and specific actions that are quick to start and complete”

Therefore ‘Micro Volunteering’ isn’t necessarily anything new it’s just a term that doesn’t get used often.

What is new is how the bite-size volunteering could be undertaken.  With advances in technology, there are more opportunities for people to volunteer remotely rather than at a set venue.

The NCVO have identified that Micro Volunteering has the following features:

  1. Duration – it involves small increments of time
  2. Access – it is easy to get started and do
  3. Immediacy – it is quick to start and complete, and requires minimal planning
  4. Convenience – you decide when and where
  5. Level of formality – no formal agreement between the organisation and the volunteer is needed
  6. Frequency – it can be a one-off or repeated
  7. Activity – it involves discrete actions
  8. Location – it can be online or offline

 

So how can you make ‘micro volunteering’ work in your club?

Firstly, ask yourself what’s the volunteering culture within your club? Have the people that currently volunteer been involved with for many years? Does their volunteering follow a set pattern of day, time and location?  These are the stalwarts of your club and they will continue to play a vital role in your club.

Micro volunteering could be viewed as the complete opposite, as there is no expectation for individuals to commit on a regular basis and accepting this is vital if ‘micro volunteering’ is to work for you.

Once this acceptance exists, a good starting point is to identify what needs to be done in your club and whether what you’ve identified is suitable for micro volunteering.

Some examples are provided below:

Volunteering task

Is it suitable for Micro Volunteering & why?

Where does the volunteering take place?

Auditing Club Accounts

Yes – task and finish, no ongoing commitment

Off-Site (At home, limited interaction with Club Treasurer)

Creating a Club Website

Yes – task and finish, no ongoing commitment

Off-Site (At home, no interaction required)

Managing Club Website

No – will need ongoing commitment

Off-Site (At home or other venue)

Painting the Changing Rooms

Yes – task and finish, no ongoing commitment

On-Site (Face to face interaction with other volunteers)

U13s Team Manager

No - will need ongoing commitment

On-Site (Significant face to face interaction with others)

Baking a cake for a club function

Yes – task and finish, no ongoing commitment

Off-Site (At home no interaction required)

Writing a grant application

Yes – task and finish, no ongoing commitment

Off-Site (At home no interaction required)

 

Whether a task is suitable or not, all sports volunteering needs to be managed and you should ensure that they have the structures and processes in place to do so.

The ‘Give to Gain’ principles:

  1. Volunteers know exactly what is expected of them
  2. Volunteers are valued, developed and supported
  3. Mutual benefits of volunteering are clear to everyone

Were developed for organisations to consider when looking at their approach to volunteering.  As each organisation is different how they implement the principles is up to them, however tools and resources to assist organisations can be found on www.clubsolutions.wales

Micro volunteering can be an ideal way to recruit and retain volunteers for your club.  If they successfully carry out their allocated task and their contribution is valued resulting in them having a positive volunteering experience, then this could result in them being confident and motivated to volunteer again.

As Lao Tzu said The journey of a thousand miles begins with one step” so why not make Micro Volunteering the first step of a person’s volunteering journey within your club?