Sunday, January 25, 2009

Volunteer Engagement in an Economic Downturn

Volunteer San Diego's podcast #74 features VSD executive director, Sue Carter, speaking with podcast host, Brent Shintani, about the importance of volunteer engagement in these difficult economic times. The combination of an increase in need and a decrease in resources is giving San Diego area nonprofit organizations a serious challenge that threatens the future of our community's most vulnerable. The good news is that Volunteer San Diego is providing tools to non-profits to leverage volunteer expertise in all areas of organizational responsibility. From stuffing envelopes to board oversight, volunteers are necessary team members for efficient nonprofits.

Sue Carter talks in the podcast about what nonprofit managers need to do to create a volunteer friendly culture, but there is a lot that volunteers can do to assist this process. First of all, offer your expertise. You may have a professional skill that can save the organization time and money, so why not pitch in? Also, volunteers must absolutely honor their commitments to nonprofits. Volunteer managers have all been burned by people with great intentions but terrible follow-through. So, you will do a great service to your favorite community organization by not biting off more than you can chew.

Check out to give a listen to this episode and other great episodes of the VSD podcast.

Anna Schulz is a member of the Flex program and a volunteer blogger for Volunteer San Diego. She also writes for her family blog, The Full Catastrophe.

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Wednesday, January 21, 2009

AmeriCorps National Civilian Community Corps (NCCC)

VSD would like to welcome the AmeriCorps National Civilian Community Corps (NCCC) Gold 4 Team! The Gold 4 team, from the North Pacific Region Campus located in Sacramento, CA, will be working mainly with our Disaster Program. The team will be providing brush management services for fire survivors through the Weed Whackin’ projects for the next six weeks!

VSD is really excited about working with Gold 4 and about making an impact through the fire recovery projects from the 2007 Wildfires and through local non-profits. If you would like to join Gold 4 for Weed Whackin’ projects, click here!

About AmeriCorps NCCC
The mission of AmeriCorps NCCC is to strengthen communities and develop leaders through direct, team-based national and community service. In partnership with nonprofit organizations, state and local agencies, and faith-based and other community organizations, members complete service projects throughout the region they are assigned.

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Sunday, January 04, 2009

Resolving to Do More

2009 has brought a slew of bright ideas and resolutions to our consciousness. Lose weight, exercise more, and spend less are probably the top three. I'm certain that volunteer more must be a pretty common New Year's Resolution as well, it may even be true for you (you are reading the VSD blog, after all). Compared to making changes to your physical and financial situation, adding community service to your life is a relatively easy resolution to keep. Volunteer San Diego is here and ready to put you to work through the Flex calendar, ongoing opportunities, and even opportunities for youth volunteers.

I also challenge you to serve your community in smaller and more creative ways. Let's agree to be more generous to one another when we're driving. Quit accepting plastic and paper bags from the stores. Introduce yourself first to new people. Don't waste water. Call your family more often to chat. There are surely many more small things that we can all add to our daily lives that make San Diego better than before. Leave your suggestions in the comment section of this posting and inspire me and other readers to easy ways to become better San Diegans.
Anna Schulz is a member of the Flex program and a volunteer blogger for Volunteer San Diego. She also writes for her family blog, The Full Catastrophe.

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