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  • Host a volunteer fair

    Companies that make volunteering easier for their employees are doing great work. Why not take it a step further and host an event to bring together their employees, nonprofits, and the community at large?

    Setting: Workplace

    Want to try this?

    There may be some people who want to join you.

    1 Team in 1 country is discussing this right now. View Teams.

    Organization/people involved

    Standard Insurance
    Portland, Oregon, U.S.A.

    What they did

    In 2006, Standard Insurance celebrated its 100th birthday with a year of events and opportunities for employees, including a volunteer expo. Soon the event grew to include the general public, and in 2009, it was held at Pioneer Square, a convenient and well-known location for public gatherings. The idea of a bigger event continues to be a community fixture that brings together over 100 nonprofits and thousands of Portlanders.

    At the expo, nonprofits meet with prospective volunteers to talk about their work and the kinds of opportunities that are available. Free for both nonprofits and attendees, the entire event is underwritten by The Standard.

    How you can do it

    Here are some things to consider as you plan your own event:

    Impact

    In the first year, about 1,500 people attended. Now, The Standard expects between 2,500 and 3,000 people at every expo.

    About 135 nonprofits get out the word about their organization and recruit volunteers each year.

    From their follow-up with organizations, Megan says that 80 percent of nonprofits report that this is by far the number one event they attend during the year, bringing them sincerely interested volunteers who want to make a serious commitment to get involved.

    Big takeaways

    Make sure that your budget matches your goals and aims. To that end, outline your goals first and what you want from the event. Have a great space. Be flexible and willing to try new things. Go big and take risks!

    Photo credit: The Standard

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