volunteer coordinating

CTC Implementation and Program Building

Organization: 
Boat People SOS - Virginia
VISTA Name: 
Hyunhanh Tran
Program Start: 
8/2001
Program End: 
8/2002
Project Description: 

BPSOS’s project ACCESS, Access to Computers for Community Empowerment, Support and Services, hopes to improve English fluency and the acquisition of computer skills in the low-income community. The VISTA members will work on the following tasks:

1. Work with community groups to identify youth needing the service and mobilize their participation in the program.
2. Set up neighborhood-based classes. This involves identification of additional resources to support these classes (such as donated computers, text books, class space, supplies).
3. Teach ESL and computer classes. This will include tailoring existing class materials to the needs of the target population.
4. Recruit, train, and coordinate volunteers to serve as instructors and mentors.
5. Encourage parents to take part in the education of their children.

CBO Web Development Strategist

Organization: 
Davis Community Network
VISTA Name: 
Rian Graves
Program Start: 
4/2007
Program End: 
8/2008
Project Description: 

The “NPO Digital Literacy Toolkit and Virtual Volunteer Initiative” project is a combination of community networking, technology assistance to nonprofits, and digital media. We believe that with the advent of new web tools, we have an opportunity to reach populations we have not reached before, and provide them access to a more accessible and empowering internet.

Over the year, our Vista will be involved in the following activities:

- help identify representative segments of our community and assess their communications needs
- become familiar with and adept at using DCN’s existing toolkit
- explore and test next generation digital tools and open source applications provided by various national and international organizations
- help coordinate the development and testing of prototype toolkits which use next generation tools
- help develop and implement a train-the-trainers curriculum
- create recommended volunteer procedures and systems that could be generalized to other community organizations, an online guide for volunteer management for use by local nonprofits, the template for an online volunteer handbook
- develop DCN’s procedures and systems (and a draft online guide) for volunteer management, test the NPO Digital Literacy Toolkit’s use for DCN’s purposes to recruit and manage volunteers, and develop a draft online volunteer handbook for DCN
- work with DCN to promote development and hosting of local rich media content,
such as blogs and vlogs, podcasts, digital storytelling, etc and explore opportunities to develop this type of content for hosting on the DCN website

Project Outcome: 

Working independently, Rian collected examples of Web 2.0 tools, resources related to them, case studies, and effective practices. She designed and developed a website to share this information broadly. She assisted in the development of several slide presentations on subjects ranging from electronic newsletters to databases and effective practices in the use of these technologies. Rian also developed recommendations for DCN’s volunteer management program, including a volunteer manual, and created on-line resources for other nonprofits to use in developing their own volunteer management programs.

Once the resources were collected into an invaluable website by Rian, a small team of technical liaisons were able to use them in supporting five pilot organizations, including the Food Bank of Yolo County, Yolo Community Foundation, Short-Term Emergency Action Committee, TREEDavis, and Davis Community Network itself. These technical liaisons are volunteers, and it made their jobs much easier to conduct strategic communications planning with the nonprofits, identify their target audiences for the pilot period, messages they wanted to use the Internet to deliver, what they wanted their audiences to do, and finally, what Internet tools (from the collection of resources on the website), would help them to carry out their strategic communications plan. Without of all Rian’s up-front work, these volunteers could not have been immediately helpful to the organizations, to help them set up their websites in a sustainable way (so that they are not dependent on DCN’s volunteers to maintain them), to develop online webforms for simple contact management, electronic newsletters, and community calendars. In addition, Rian led a team to evaluate more sophisticated collaborative, communication, and contact management tools for DCN to use, to model potential future uses of tools such as Google Apps and Salesforce, when local nonprofits (with our help), become more sophisticated in their use of the Internet.

The major challenge for Rian was that DCN did not have an executive director during most of the term of her assignment, which meant that she was supervised, first by a team of volunteers, and then by a single volunteer. While she was able to carry out assignments once they were framed, and she worked well independently, she (and the organization) would have benefited from supervision by a staff person.

Impact Quote: 

Rian was invaluable in providing resources to help our organization become a better model, in identifying new technologies (Web 2.0) to evaluate and test with our pilot organizations, and suggesting sustainable approaches to maintaining these resources.”
- Vicki Suter, supervisor

Outreach & Volunteer Coordinator

Organization: 
Homeless Prenatal Program
VISTA Name: 
Scott Reed
Program Start: 
7/2009
Program End: 
7/2010
Project Description: 

The ultimate goal of this VISTA project is to shine the spotlight on HPP’s mission and work, raising visibility for a wide audience: current and prospective donors, volunteers, and a diverse community of San Francisco families who need our services.

With direction from the project manager and Development Director, the VISTA will develop creative methods for collecting the many stories of need, perseverance and success that buzz around our client programs and are the pride of our client services staff. The VISTA will gather these stories, in addition to news and events about the agency, and distribute the information to the community through a variety of channels.

Goal 1: Drive traffic to Web site and convert visitors into members, volunteers and advocates

Goal 2: Create sustainable process for content gathering and distribution at HPP

Project Outcome: 

Scott worked with mentor Brittney Fosbrook to create an ongoing, nearly self-sustainable strategic plans for a volunteer-run program in our Community Technology Center. Scott created an online volunteer guide which contains all the “how to’s” and useful links for our volunteers.The guide also contains volunteers agreements and lab rules. Scott also worked with our Systems Administrator to create customized, bilingual computer profiles for our clients, making it easier for our guests to login and use the lab with minimal computer experience. Scott also cleaned up the space physically, getting rid of unused materials and installing useful information sheets for additional resources. In addition to volunteer outreach, Scott also conducted major outreach to clients and to our case management staff, so that they understand the resources available and their potential value to clients.

The volunteer program in the CTC has been successful in that it has increased lab attendance, increased volunteer engagement, and has decreased the amount of staff time necessary to run the lab. However, the CTC is not able to self-sustain on volunteers alone. Scott has been hired as a full-time employee, with half-time duties related to CTC coordination.

Scott was a key player in HPP’s first steps in social media, creating a Facebook and Twitter presence, as well as advising the development of our revamped website. This developed as the need was identified at HPP and matched Scott’s skills and interests.

Outreach, Marketing, and Volunteer Coordinator

Organization: 
Media Bridges Cincinnati
VISTA Name: 
Katie Finnigan
Program Start: 
9/2009
Program End: 
9/2010
Project Description: 

Media Bridge’s venture into the LPFM world is a step we feel very comfortable with, but at the same respect it will weigh heavy on our staff and man power to get the Radio station up and running. We seek a VISTA to contribute in the structuring of a stable working infrastructure. To develop and implement a content management system and a volunteer management system will help offset duties from a paid staff member, which could be used towards more direct service. The LPFM radio station is particularly critical at this time as the construction permit expires in August of 2009. Failure to be on the air by that time may result in our losing this precious community resource.

Goal 1: Develop and implement a system to keep the station up to date and in compliance with FCC regulations.
Goal 2: Implement a Volunteer Management System
Goal 3: Implement sustainable Marketing & PR Plan

Project Outcome: 

Katie Completed the following projects and assignments.

To increase Cincinnati’s access to local, community-based media by:
• Providing a locally owned station that broadcasts at least 50 hours a week
• Airing at least 40 hours a week of original programming produced by volunteers
• Training at least 40 local programmers

To increase the diversity of voices in local media by:
• Actively recruiting women, minorities and people of low income for programming and Advisory Board positions
• Offering broadcast training classes for less than $100
• Prioritizing shows with unique content, to ensure that a wide variety of voices are represented on the air

To promote local arts and culture and provide much needed exposure to local musicians by:
• Airing several hours of arts and cultural programming each week
• Designating blocks of airtime for local music
• Creating a library of songs by local musicians for volunteers to play on the air

To encourage public discussion and civic engagement by:
• Prioritizing talk and public affairs programs that cover issues of local importance

Outreach and Development Coordinator

Organization: 
Quote-Unquote
VISTA Name: 
Erica Jones
Program Start: 
9/2009
Program End: 
9/2010
Project Description: 

This VISTA member, in their capacity as outreach assistant, would serve to bring new organizations and communities in to work with QUQ. The role of outreach assistant would be valuable experience for the VISTA member in networking, community organizing and learning about the community that she/he would be working and living in. It involves calling people, talking to them, sending them information by email, asking them to come to a meeting and to tour our studios.

The VISTA member would keep accurate records of contacts and the process of recruitment, as well as the steps and the results of fundraising efforts. These records would be used for the manual that would be developed in conjunction with the executive director.

Project Outcome: 

Some main areas that Erica helped to develop and expand are: Volunteer recruitment/outreach, Partnership Expansion/Outreach, and Fundraising development.

Volunteer outreach: Erica has set up an entire program of recruitment of volunteers. As a result we had as many as 19 volunteer interns at one time at our facility during the fall, spring and summer months. The recruitment efforts targeted local universities and high schools. The success was due to setting up face to face meetings as well as using Craig’s List, social media and e-newsletter contact. This was done in conjunction with the Executive Director.

Partnership Outreach: Erica also worked on setting up partnerships with the Albuquerque Convention and Visitors Bureau, Media Literacy Project, The Alibi (local weekly newspaper), Enlace Comunitario, SWOP, KUNM Youth Radio, Albuquerque Film Festival, SW Gay and Lesbian Film Festival, Taos Shortz Film Festival, Experimental Cinema Film Festival, New Mexico Daily Lobo, Public Service Media Project, NM Film Office, NM Thunderbirds, CitizenSchools, and the creation of an accredited production class through the University of New Mexico Continuing Education department.

Fundraising Outreach: Erica worked on many small scale and large scale fundraising efforts throughout the year. Some examples of these efforts are: “Benefit Night” fundraisers being help at T.G.I.Friday and Fuddruckers, a “TV Dinner” benefit event, a concert event at a local venue, and the development of a monthly media industry networking event held at a local restaurant. Other areas have included working alongside the Executive Director on research for and preparation of grants and foundation money. Examples of this assistance was the working on a letter of inquiry for the Glaser Foundation which focused on Independent Media projects. We pitched the creation of a youth-focused journalism and mentorship program. A letter of inquiry into the MacArthur Foundation, regarding the same project. The creation of a profile in multiple local community foundations. She did extensive research and compiling together of regional, state-wide, and national grants and foundations that could be potential sources for income. Erica also helped Steve Ranieri with researching and preparing the application for a grant through the McCune Foundation, a local foundation here in New Mexico.

Other general outreach efforts that Erica engaged in were attending various local outreach events, such as: NM Film and Media Day, Digital Arts Conference, NM Film conference, SW Gay and Lesbian Film Festival, Fiery Foods Show, and other events where the positive image of our organization was represented. All of these efforts were tracked, documented, and written into a manual titled “How to Outreach: a Resource Guide for Quote Unquote.” This resource will be left behind for future staff and VISTAs to refer back to for guidance.

Two other projects Erica worked on were the transitioning of the paper newsletter to the electronic newsletter and the transitioning of the Dreamweaver based website to a user-friendly, more efficient website through the Grassroots.org services. It developed through the need of better organizational efficiency. There was an indication that some staff had additional responsibilities that were taking them away from their actual work. With Erica noticing this, she suggested making these two main transitions as a means to alleviate extra work from staff (printing of newsletters, mailing them, updating the website using software that requires skills) and to build a more sustainable infrastructure.

YEAR 2
 ——

Erica has been active at Quote-Unquote building capacity both internal to the organization and exteranlly in the community. This has included develping advertising/marketing partnerships, outreach events, and developing trainings, curriculum, and research. On of the major programs Erica developed is the New Mexico Community Journalism Program, for which she developed the initial grant and has formed the core board which meets weekly to continuously fine tune our mission and purpose in the New Mexico Community. Erica has drafted letters of interest for people to invest and join the project as an anchor organization (content providers, mentors, and a place for community journalists to use for resources). This will help form the state-wide network we envision to help sustain the information flow throughout the state and will also help community journlists with guidance and resources to better serve the needs of their communities. This mission is: “Strengthen an emerging state-wide rural and urban multilingual news network that represents unheard, marginalized, and diverse voices, independent of government & corporate control, values, and content. We will provide a multimedia outlet for the news that the local residents determine, produce, and contribute, thus connecting them to the needs in their community.” Erica has also been a devoted VISTA Leader coordinating 20+ VISTAs and participating as a Leader Guide.

Outreach & Volunteer Coordinator

Organization: 
Latinitas
VISTA Name: 
Claudia Escobar Lopez
Program Start: 
9/2009
Program End: 
9/2010
Project Description: 

As part of the CTC VISTA Project, Latinitas would recruit a VISTA member to serve as an Outreach & Volunteer Coordinator. This position would assist with:
Primary Goals:
-organizing an advisory board that will develop a comprehensive curriculum guide with a series of media-based, enrichment activities for girls.
-coordinating a volunteer leadership team that will assist with future club leader recruitment, trainings and management
-developing training procedures and volunteer manuals to empower volunteer club leaders to guide girl empowerment activities
Secondary Goals
-creating a marketing plan to outline strategies for effectively recruiting volunteers, identifying strategic community partners and sponsors and beginning the initial phase of volunteer recruitment.

Throughout the project, the VISTA member will work directly with an advisory board and volunteers to develop a curriculum guides, club leader training manual, volunteer procedures and volunteer recruitment marketing plan. These tangible products will enable Latinitas to replicate our media-based, culturally-relevant, bilingual, girl enrichment programs into additional communities. Latinos make up about 15 percent of the U.S. population and are the largest and fastest growing population. Despite the growth and size of this population, very few programs exist nationally that focus specifically on this population. The tools developed in this project may serve as a model framework and curriculum to share with the field of Latina-focused girl empowerment programs nationally.

Project Outcome: 

Claudia has organized recruitment efforts, orientation sessions and meetings to help build our advisory board. She has been instrumental in developing and documenting the procedures for effective volunteer training and management. She has developed an orientation and training module which we will utilize in preparing future volunteer club leaders for their role in leading multimedia clubs for girls. In addition, she has developed a comprehensive volunteer leader manual which clearly outlines the role, responsibilities, procedures and policies in the management of volunteer led clubs. The manual includes club leader job descriptions, club meeting outlines, attendance policies, dress code, code of behavior, classroom management tips, mentoring tips, recruitment tips, Internet safety guidelines, material checklists, equipment checkout procedures, attendance sheets, volunteer hour logs, club member evaluations, club fact sheets and other valuable tips on managing a media club for girls. Furthermore, our VISTA member has worked collaboratively with a team of volunteers to develop a new Club Leader Curriculum Guide building on our library of club lesson plans. Thanks to support from our VISTA Member, we now have over 100 multimedia lesson plans developed that we can implement in our multimedia clubs. These lessons are focused on teaching young Latinas in grades 4-8 about how they can use media as a tool for creative self-expression. These lessons are bilingual and bi-cultural and focused on writing, art, photography, audio production, film making, desktop publishing and web design. Our VISTA has also initiated a pilot test program training 4 volunteers to lead volunteer media clubs. She has recruited the volunteer club leaders, implemented and tested a club leader training session and provided technical support to our club leaders. The volunteer training module and curriculum guide has proven to work successfully with this group and our VISTA member is helping us lay the foundation to implement this program on a larger scale in the future.

Since our VISTA member is perfectly fluent in Spanish and English, she was able to assist us in translating numerous documents in our volunteer training manual as well as other materials for the public. We work with a largely Spanish-speaking population of recent immigrants, so her assistance in creating bilingual materials was a great asset in preparing all the needed documents for our volunteers to go out into the community to serve Spanish-speaking girls and families. In addition, our VISTA member developed a volunteer recognition procedures to assist in our volunteer retention efforts including creating volunteer certificates and awards, organizing volunteer appreciation events and developing a system for recognizing volunteers in our newsletter and special events.

Program Development Coordinator

Organization: 
Latinitas
VISTA Name: 
Marisol Guzman
Program Start: 
9/2010
Program End: 
9/2011
Project Description: 

The Corps member will help develop a model for volunteer-led media clubs for low-income girls in the rural outlying areas near El Paso.

The Corps member would manage a pilot test of the volunteer-led module, provide trainings and technical support to volunteer club leaders, gather feedback from club leaders, revise club leader manuals and procedures, build on our curriculum to add advanced lessons for high school students, recruit new leadership team members, and build the infrastructure for our leadership team.

Project Outcome: 

Our VISTA member played an instrumental role in collaborating with our team in developing a curriculum guide for teen programs, recruiting and training a Girl Empowerment Team of program leaders and advisory board members, refining our club leader training program, and implementing a pilot test of volunteer-led clubs. As a result of her service, we now have new curriculum, a strong leadership committee, new volunteer recruits and updated volunteer procedures. Our VISTA Member has played a key role in helping us refine our volunteer structure, procedures and roles. Our VISTA Member helped develop and kick-off our Girl Empowerment Team to take on leadership roles to serve as a program advisory committee. The Girl Empowerment Team assists with the development of media curriculum for our media enrichment programs for girls and serve as leaders in training new volunteer Club Leaders. She has recruited and oriented new members for the Girl Empowerment Team. She developed a lesson plan template to provide a standardized format for all program curriculum development. She also created a guide for media curriculum development which serves as a tool for the entire team to create new curriculum aligned with our key program objectives in mind. In collaboration with our Girl Empowerment Team, our VISTA member has added to our existing curriculum of media enrichment lessons for middle school girls with new advanced lessons for high school students as well. The new activities build upon our existing lessons for middle school girls customized for a teen audience. These lessons are focused on teaching young Latinas in grades 9-12 about how they can use media as a tool for confidence building and creative self-expression. These lessons are bilingual and bi-cultural and focused on journalism writing, art, photography, audio production, film making, desktop publishing and web design. The Girl Empowerment Team will continue to play a key role in future improvements and advancements expansion for this initiative. Our VISTA Member also assisted our volunteer recruitment efforts by developing marketing strategies, creating volunteer promotional materials and advertising our volunteer opportunities. She has brought in numerous new volunteers to assist in various aspects of our organization. She has organzed volunteer information sessions and oriented new volunteers. She has recruited volunteers to take on leadership roles in our Girl Empowerment Team. She has also aided our efforts to recruit volunteers to serve as Club Leaders to lead our weekly media enrichment clubs. Thanks to her efforts, we have launched a pilot test of 8 after-school clubs led by our Volunteer Club Leaders. We recruited volunteer Club Leaders, hosted a training session, kicked off new clubs and hosted on-going training and provided technical support for the clubs. Our VISTA member was instrumental in guiding this process. Through our pilot group of volunteer Club Leaders, we are discovering areas for improvements and elaborating on our Volunteer Club Leader manual and training module. This pilot test helped us identify areas for future improvements and establishing the framework for future expansion. Thanks to the support of the Transmission Project and our VISTA member, we are continuing a series of volunteer-led media clubs for young Latinas and we are better prepared to expand the number of programs we offer in the near future using this volunteer model. Our VISTA Member has made tremendous strides in ensuring the sustainability of our project by cultivating a volunteer group that has taken on leadership roles in our Girl Empowerment Team to ensure the longevity of the project. The Latinitas team is prepared with the proper tools to streamline the training process, implement efficient and effective procedures, and properly equip future volunteers in taking on leadership roles. Our VISTA member has created tangible materials which will continue to be utilized as future resources. She has developed tools such as recruitment materials for our volunteers and updated training materials for our club leaders.

Development Coordinator

VISTA Name: 
Carolyn Braunius
Program Start: 
9/2010
Program End: 
9/2011
Project Description: 

The VISTA will work on building The Sanctuary’s grassroots fundraising capacity while organizing and expanding our grant writing efforts. Other priorities include continuing to build The Sanctuary’s capacity for handling volunteers and in-kind donations. The goal is to put into place a solid foundation for attracting and retaining a full spectrum of support, ranging from financial and material to human resources.

Outreach Coordinator

Organization: 
Brookline Access TV
VISTA Name: 
Jessica Wholey
Program Start: 
9/2010
Program End: 
9/2011
Project Description: 

The VISTA will network and meet with collaborating, partner, and support organization in Brookline and the Boston area and provide those organizations with guidance and technical assistance in media and technology program development. Develop a volunteer recruitment and management program for BATV, website support and development, and grant writing and research.

Project Outcome: 

essica has been instrumental in cementing relationshps between BATV and community groups. These relationships have led to increased dialogue and media production for Brookline residents. These relationships have included:

Brookline Early Education Program (BEEP) Connections Literacy Initiative: represented BATV on a “Connections” board of Brookline organizations, which includes Brookline Public Library, the Brookline Housing Authority, the Parent-Child Home Program, the Brookline Community Mental Health Center, Steps To Success, the Brookline Recreation Department, the Brookline Music School, & the Brookline Community Foundation. Focusing on children 0-8, we’ve created programs for early literacy that will help each student enter first grade on equal educational footing. Our first major project was a Sing-A-Long video that Jessica produced with Debbie Fellman of BEEP. It is being screened at a “Red Carpet Event” at the Coolidge Corner Cinema tomorrow for all the BEEP children.

Steps To Success After school Photo Club: Steps to Success is an excellent Brookline organization that aims to close the achievement gap for children in public housing, and foster educational equality in an attempt to end generational poverty. Jessica coordinated a media related enrichment club at their after school program every Monday. It was such a good fit for BATV and STS that it evolved from a photography club into a music video club.

BHS Sports: In an attempt to increase participation in the Brookline sports programs and garner greater community support for High School sports, Jessica worked to bring BATV together with the PTO, the BHS Athletic Department, and the BU Sports broadcasting program to increase our local sports coverage. We began by covering a few events in the fall, a few more in the winter, and had a successful and ambitious programming schedule this spring!

Bibliophile Cinema: With the amazing guidance and leadership of Robin Brenner at the Brookline Public Library, we’ve organized a monthly book/movie club. The idea is that we read a book and then watch the adapted film. And of course, we always have a lively discussion afterwards!

Jessica was also involved with recruiting interns and coordinating them. She created job descriptions for several intern positions each semester, then recruited, interviewed, hired and managed students from schools all over the Boston area: Framingham St, Brookline High, Newbury College, BU, BC, Emmaneule, NEIA, Northeastern University, NESAD @Suffolk, SMFA @ Tufts, and Roxbury Community College. With the help of these interns, we’ve increased our coverage of community events.

Community Engagement and Volunteer Coordinator

Organization: 
National Radio Project
VISTA Name: 
Karl Jagbandhansingh
Program Start: 
9/2010
Program End: 
9/2011
Project Description: 

The Corps member would provide the leadership and passion to coordinate and guide the many people who want to get involved with national Radio Project Currently, we are blessed to have a fairly steady stream of volunteers, yet we lack the capacity to coordinate the volunteers effectively. The Corps member will also play a critical role in reaching out to more economic justice groups who can advise us on key issues. We have been wanting to cultivate these relationships to deepen our beat, but have lacked the capacity to do so. The Community Engagement and Volunteer COordinator will play a vital role in our organization: managing volunteers, reaching out to grass roots economic justice organizations, and organizing events and house parties, with the support of other volunteers. They will deepen our networks among 3 major constituents: 1? Volunteers, 2) Donors, and 3) Grassroots Allies.

Project Outcome: 

Karl recruited, new fall, spring, and summer cohort of production and organizational interns and volunteers and:

– organized, and publicized a Fall “Happy Hour” event to build relationships with housing groups
–Organized, publicized, and recorded a Spring event: A Community Discussion on Gang Injunctions
–Supported production of several programs, including interviewing and recording participants for “Presumed Guilty: American Muslims and Arabs”
–Audio recorded events for rebroadcasting
–Trained interns/volunteers and set up systems for coordination of projects/tasks for interns/volunteers among staff.
–Full participated in staff meetings and staff retreats to determine strategic planning and direction of organization.

As a result of our corps member Karl’s activities, we’ve strengthened our volunteer recruitment strategies, refined our volunteer management systems, developed a deeper relationship with the local community radio station, and build stronger relationships with grassroots groups working on housing, prison, policing, and immigration issues. After Karl is done, we need to continue to stay in contact with grassroots groups via email so they know we are a media resource for them to get their stories heard.

Transmission Project