AVM has welcomed the key recommendation around supporting volunteer management in ‘Stronger charities for a stronger society’, the new report from the House of Lords Select Committee on Charities.
The report contains the recommendation:

We propose that funders should provide more resources for volunteer managers so that charities can make the best possible use of the generous contribution of their volunteers and support their efforts.

The recommendation is based on a submission from the Association of Volunteer Managers responding to the Select Committee’s call for evidence last year. This was bolstered by the committee’s own evidence gathering when they visited local charities who talked about their needs when involving volunteers in their work.

Debbie Usiskin, Chair of AVM, said: “We are over the moon at this news. Communicating the value and need for volunteer management as a recognised discipline is at the core of what AVM was set up to achieve. Having such high-profile confirmation of this is very welcome.”
AVM member Sheila Norris echoed these words: “Working in a local volunteer centre, I see first hand the impact that investing in volunteer management can have. I’m pleased that this new report recognises the resources needed to make volunteering happen.”
The committee’s own comments on the recommendation were: “Funders need to be more receptive to requests for resources for volunteer managers and co-ordinators, especially where charities are able to demonstrate a strong potential volunteer base. We recommend that Government guidance on public sector grants and contracts is amended to reflect this and set a standard for other funders.”

Comments (2)

This is indeed a great recommendation. In fact all the report’s proposals on volunteering are positive.
However, what worries me is the emphasis it appears those giving evidence placed on external funding for volunteer management and volunteer engagement. Why does volunteering always have to go outside the organisation for funding? Isn’t volunteering strategically important enough to warrant being funded properly from ‘core’ funds?
The Lords report is a good start but also highlights how far we have to go to get volunteering and volunteer management really taken seriously.

I think it is good but as Rob said, I would hope that organisations would make volunteer management part of their core recruitment objectives/budget. However, if funders recognised operating costs (e.g. salary for volunteer manager) as part of a valid bid, it certainly helps to make this a possibility – especially for smaller charities.

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