HOW CAN WE ENCOURAGE MORE VOLUNTEERS IN OUR SCHOOLS?
Communities In Schools of Richmond is connected to a national network of 200 affiliates forming the nation’s largest and most effective organization dedicated to keeping kids in school by bringing community resources inside public schools.
Create a social media campaign celebrating CIS volunteers.
Help a larger variety of people imagine themselves as a "school" volunteer. Create content that speaks to their doubts and design tools that help our expanded audience become & stay a CIS volunteer
WE BEGAN BY INTERVIEWING SITE COORDINATORS, TEACHERS & VOLUNTEERS TO UNDERSTAND THE SMALL DOUBTS FACING NEW AND RETURNING VOLUNTEERS WHEN THEY ARE CONSIDERING CIS
WE BROADENED OUR AUDIENCE BASED ON NEEDS WITHIN THE SCHOOLS
These doubts became the basis for a larger conversation with teachers and the site coordinator about one of CIS' biggest needs, diversity in volunteers: in race, gender, background and skill sets. Our audience became the doubtful "every person" who was able to justify not volunteering because they were not a kid person, or had the wrong type of experience or were not sure how long they would be in the area. They did not need bold hero messaging, they needed flexibility and opportunities to volunteer that fit their skill sets and time tables.
WE REDEFINED WHAT IT MEANS TO BE A CHAMPION
We broadened what it means to be a CIS champion by making a list of the many types of champions that we were hoping would become CIS volunteers.
AND CREATED CONTENT BASED ON THE DOUBTS WE IDENTIFIED
As the original ask was to create a social media campaign, we created content templates so the current CIS champions would be able to speak to each doubt that we had identified.
WE RECOMMENDED MEETING OUR AUDIENCE WHERE THEY ARE
We knew that CIS needed to show up in our audience's daily lives. We recommended partnering with or being featured through several organizations. We also wrote an intern job description to help make everything happen.
AND DESIGNED PRELIMINARY, ON-BOARDING AND RETENTION EXPERIENCES FOR THEM
Through interviews with a volunteer, who had recently gone through on-boarding, we were able to construct a user journey that identified opportunities for improving the recruiting, on-boarding and retention process for volunteers. A complete PDF of the actual tools listed below and other resources we created is available here.
CIS was especially excited about the resources that we created in our designing for volunteers section. They agreed that the three doubts that we identified were three major issues that faced their volunteers. While the CIS team liked the core ideas of our content templates, they wanted more examples of content we might create.