volunteer participation

December 14, 2023

Episode #88: Research on Volunteer Participation What You Need to Know with Helen Tourle 

In this episode, host Tobi Johnson sits down with special guest Helen Tourle, a senior consultant for volunteering at the National Council for Voluntary Organizations (NCVO). Together, they delve into the history of the Time Well Spent research series and findings of the most recent study, focusing on volunteer experiences among the global majority.

The discuss key takeaways from the report, the impact of emotions on volunteers, and strategies for enhancing volunteer engagement. Join us as we uncover crucial insights for creating inclusive and fulfilling volunteer opportunities, and be prepared to be inspired to make positive changes in how you engage and support your community of volunteers.

Volunteer Participation Research – Time Well Spent Insights Since 2019

Since 2019, and with the goal of ensuring organizations provide quality volunteer experiences to encourage continued volunteering and recommendations to others to volunteer, the Time Well Spent Study has offered insight and data around volunteer participation and perceptions. Researchers at NCVO have identified and grouped eight characteristics of a quality volunteer experience based on responses for tens of thousands of volunteers and non-volunteers across England.

Volunteer Participation Research – Inclusive Volunteering & the Global Majority

The most recent study in the series found that volunteers, especially from the global majority, value flexibility in choosing when and how much time to give. Organizations should review volunteer activities and roles, breaking them up into flexible tasks to accommodate diverse schedules. Also, inclusivity matters. Volunteers from the global majority may encounter micro-aggressions and barriers related to disability, age, and race or ethnicity. Organizations must focus on respect, trust, and inclusivity to boost volunteer participation and retention post-COVID while fostering a culture of belonging.

Volunteer Participation Research – Show Highlights

02:10.3 Tobi Introduces Helen
05:06.0 Helen shares why volunteerism is so important in today’s world
08:36.2 Helen describes NCVO and its mission
10:20.9 The hsitory of the Time Well Spent study
15:29.6 Key takeaways from the original 2019 report
18:14.4 Subsequent reports that were produced in the series
22:53.2 What the term “global majority” means and why it is used
25:21.5 Key findings from the volunteering experience of the global majority report
34:24.2 Key implications of this research for nonprofit organizations
47:53.0 How to get in touch with Helen

Volunteer Research – Quotes from the Episode

“volunteers from within the global majority have less positive experiences of organizational culture, so are less likely to agree that there’s a culture of respect and trust, are less likely to raise an issue with the organization if it was needed, and are more likely to report that they see tension and conflict between people within an organization.”

“Global majority volunteers are twice as likely to feel excluded or feeling feelings of exclusion, less likely to feel like they belong in an organization and volunteers overall. And, again, that that is more stark with those volunteers with an intersectional identity as well.”

“Flexibility has come through really strongly in all of the Time Well Spent Reports. It is particularly meaningful for those from the global majority; they have really stated how much they value a flexibility in how they give time, the times of day or the amount of time they’re able to give, rather than that feeling that they’re signing up to something that’s gonna be a really fixed commitment.”

Want More? Check out Our Time + Talent Podcast!

Whether you’re looking for solutions, inspiration, or just want to hear what others are doing to successfully engage volunteers, Time + Talent is the podcast for leaders of volunteers.

Co-hosts Tobi Johnson, MA, CVA and Jennifer Bennett, CVA bring you uplifting and insightful conversations with thought leaders and volunteer management practitioners who are redefining their roles, and the roles of volunteers.


About the Show

Nonprofit leadership author, trainer, consultant, and volunteer management expert Tobi Johnson shares weekly tips to help charities build, grow, and scale exceptional volunteer teams. Discover how your nonprofit can effectively coordinate volunteers who are reliable, equipped, and ready to help you bring about BIG change for the better.

If you’re ready to ditch the stress and harness the power of people to fuel your good work, you’re in exactly the right place!

Contact Us

Have questions or suggestions for the show? Email us at wecare@volpro.net.

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