Nonprofit organizations often operate on lean budgets and need to find ways to say thank you to their dedicated volunteers, especially around the holiday season.
Volunteers play a key role for many nonprofits, so it’s important to keep them coming back and evangelizing your organization to others who may want to volunteer. The holidays are a great time to build momentum since many people are looking to give back, and non-profits are looking for volunteers to potential get involved now and give back all year round.
Consider these three meaningful ways to provide thank you gifts to volunteers that also won’t break the bank.
1. Send thank-you notes.
People who give of themselves, whether it’s time or resources, deserve a thoughtful thank you message from the organization. For those that like the limelight- tell their story at an event or in a newsletter, for those who prefer to remain anonymous, send a note that’s personal. However you say thank you, avoid bulk communication or emails since they can come off as impersonal.
Whether volunteers stick a thank-you note to their fridge or tack a newsletter to a cubicle wall at the office, the “thank you” not only reminds volunteers how much they're appreciated, but it also encourages everyone who see it to get involved in their friend or family member's cause.
2. Give shout-outs on social media.
This seems so easy it may even seem silly. However, for employees who come in groups or as individuals, getting a shout out on Facebook or Instagram can go a long way.
The recognition in a public setting is easy for the organization (and helps general promotional marketing) and holds trophy value for volunteers. Being able to show friends and family their shout out on social media helps keep the memory of the experience fresh and makes the volunteer feel like they made an impact.
3. Give volunteers gift cards.
If there’s room in the budget, especially around the holiday season, you can say thank you to volunteers by giving them small denomination gift cards. This is a great way to give a material gift, while allowing volunteers to choose what they get with it.
Gift cards are also a great way to call out dedicated volunteers who regularly donate their time or money to support organizations that align with their interests.
When providing gift cards to volunteers it’s important that you don’t provide large gifts. Volunteers shouldn’t give of their time with the expectation of a gift in return, however for people who really go above and beyond for your organization, they deserve an unexpected, extra thank you gesture.
No matter how you choose to reward volunteers, make sure your thank you gifts are in line with your budget and appeal to their interests.
Not sure which gift cards to buy your team of volunteers? You can browse our name-brand gift card portfolio before deciding what to purchase at a bulk discount.
Originally published 4/3/2017