Bookings Now Open for AVM Conference 2016

welcome to avmThe conference team have been busy, the venue is booked, keynote speakers are in place and the Volunteer Management event of the year, and highlight of the AVM calendar, is ready to go.
Bookings for this year’s AVM annual conference are now open.  You can book your place here.
This year we are offering a small number of member tickets at last year’s conference price so book early to enjoy all of this year’s conference benefits at last year’s price – what could be better.
Key note speakers this year are:
• Karl Wilding, Director of Public Policy and Volunteering at NCVO
• Julie Bentley, Chief Executive of Girlguiding
• Joe Saxton, Driver of Ideas at nfpSynergy and its founder
Workshops this year include:
• Volunteers and the Law
• Future Trends and Issues in Volunteer Management
• Measuring Volunteer Impact
• Volunteering and Digital Media
It’s an exciting conference programme and we look forward to seeing you there.

AVM Hires First Employee To Grow Events Programme

I’m pleased to announce that AVM, in partnership with nfpSynergy, has just recruited its first full time employee.
To grow our range of events, seminars and conferences we’ve employed Abigail Cooper in the role of Events Manager. Having worked on our plans for over a year we know Abigail will be a huge asset to our work, and allow us to do more events, in more places, on more topics.
We know there is demand for the growth in volunteer management and leadership expertise from both large and small organisations and we aim to fill the gap in the market and support volunteer managers.
Abigail’s appointment will also increase our capacity, freeing up directors to focus on reviewing our membership model to include organisations, not solely individuals, to create a sustainable platform for growth.
To help us make this move nfpSynergy have offered office space, administrative support and professional services during the first year.
With a greater programme of events, we believe we can grow our income, increase our impact, and support the appetite for training and CPD from the volunteering development sector. We think it’s a win/win for AVM, and hope you’ll join us in welcoming Abigail.

Recruiting, Managing and Retaining Volunteers Forum – Inside Government

The Community Life Survey has indicated a significant decrease in the number of volunteers compared to 2013-2014. Without the essential work volunteers deliver, the vital work of the third sector cannot survive.
With this in mind, Inside Government are bringing together key policy makers and industry thought leaders at an interactive forum taking place in Central London on Wednesday 25th May. Participants will hear keynote speakers from AVM, NAVCA and ACEVO and award winning case studies in order to later develop their own strategies on how to effectively recruit, manage and retain volunteers.
AVM Members are entitled to a 15% discount .
You can book your place online here alternatively call Inside Governments booking team directly on 0203 770 6580

AVM Network Day 19th May

Retail Volunteering Networking Event
Are you thinking about how you can get the most out of your Retail Volunteers?
Have you thought about having volunteer run shops?
Are you looking at how best to recruit and retain retail volunteers?
This special Network Day has been designed to focus specifically on sharing experiences of about how we can make the most of our retail volunteers while providing them with Safe and brilliant experiences.
Book your place at Retail Volunteering Networking Event
This event is kindly supported and hosted by Nightingale Hammerson.
Nightingale Hammerson
105 Nightingale Lane, London SW12 8NB
NOTE: Please do not bring any food or drinks to the venue other than water as all food on site needs to be kosher. Any other food or drink brought to the event will not be allowed on site.
10:00am Arrivals, Tea and coffee and Informal networking
10:30am Welcome from AVM
10:35am Structured networking
11:00am Rising staff costs are becoming a real issue for charity retailers. Save the Children runs 120 shops with no paid shop management and only 20 with. How do they do it?
Diane Eyre – Head of Retail – Save the Children
This workshop is an introduction to Save the Children`s approach to running volunteer self-managing charity retail chain. We will share with you our history, current state and future plans alongside our overall approach.
There will be opportunity for you to think about your current situation and how you can adopt or adapt a similar approach.
12.00pm Keeping pace with retail
Karen Allsop – Head of Volunteering Development – Blue Cross & Liz Reed – Volunteering Business Partner – Blue Cross
Outlining the rapid expansion of the Blue Cross retail network and the impact on their volunteering team. The benefits of taking a business partnership approach to volunteering within the retail team.
We’ll highlight some of the changes and the lessons we’ve learnt and what we would do differently as a result of what we’ve learnt and some of our plans for the future.
13:00 Lunch – To be provided
13:45pm From empty nests to social clubs. Volunteer recruitment & retention in shops at Sense.
Alex South – Volunteer Good Practice Advisor – Sense
Looking at the recruitment and retention in shops at Sense, which involves bespoke plans for shops at different stages in their volunteer recruitment journey and how it works with the “Orange Shop” concept.
14:45pm Open Space (with tea and coffee)
An opportunity for attendees to lead or request discussions on topics relevant to them, drawing on peer support to explore challenges and celebrate successes
15:45pm Final comments and evaluation
16:00pm Close
Why not join AVM and save on the cost of your ticket? YOU CAN JOIN HERE
Simply complete the paperwork and send us a cheque and then pop back here and book on as a member – what could be easier? No need to wait for confirmation of membership.
This special Network Day has been designed to focus specifically on sharing experiences of about how we can make the most of our retail volunteers while providing them with Safe and brilliant experiences

It's a Date – 19 October 2016 AVM Conference

Plans are coming together nicely for the AVM Conference in 2016.  We’ve already lined up some exciting keynote speakers and workshop sessions.
Amongst our keynote speakers will be:

  • Sir Stephen Bubb, Chief Executive of the Association of Chief Executives of Voluntary Organisations –  Sir Stephen received a knighthood in 2011 for his services to the voluntary sector.
  • Julie Bentley, Chief Executive of Girlguiding.   In April 2014, Julia was named as one of Britain’s most influential women in the BBC Woman’s Hour power list 2014

Workshops will include:

  • Volunteers and the Law delivered by Mark Restall author of the Volunteering England publication Volunteers and the Law.
  • A look at some new research conducted by the National Trust and De Montfort University on the differences between managing paid staff and volunteers

So keep the date free and watch out for more news on the conference in the coming months.
The venue will be the same as last year, the Royal National Hotel, London, close to Euston and Kings Cross stations.
Looking forward to seeing you there.
AVM Conference Team

Alternatives to the traditional Corporate Volunteering approaches: 10th December

AVM Network Day 10th December: Alternatives to the traditional (and tired…) Corporate Volunteering approaches of team building days.

  • Are you thinking about how you can get the most out of your Corporate Volunteering?
  • Do you think the traditional model of Teams painting halls and planting trees is tired and out dated?
  • Do you think we fail to make the best use of skills that Corporates have to offer?

This event is kindly supported and hosted by the Jewish Volunteering Network

  • Jewish Volunteering Network
  • 44a Albert Road, London NW4 2SJ

Book your ticket


10:00 am Arrivals, Tea and coffee and Informal networking
10:30 am Welcome from AVM
10:35 am Structured networking
11:00 am – Why does understanding volunteering matter to corporates?
Peter Massey – Budd UK
A friend, on the board of a bank, was faced with this dilemma. “We spend enormous amounts of management time, effort & money trying to motivate our staff to give their best performance. And according to our employee surveys we do ok but….. But when we gave our employees free reign and asked them to raise £2m for a charity, they raised £10m in a week. Surely we can learn something from that?”
How can charities get the most out of working with corporates in this way?
12.00 pm Lunch
12:45 pm – A practical approach to building alternative corporate partnerships
Geraldine McCarthy – Age UK Camden
Finalist – Third Sector Awards – Volunteer Manager of the Year
Winner – Age UK John Ramsey Award 2015 for Inspirational Volunteer Management

  • What do you do to respond to one off requests
  • How to deal with Organisations without Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) programmes
  • How to bring Colleagues for the Journey
  • Not losing sight on the End Game

1.30 pm Open Space (with tea and coffee)
An opportunity for attendees to lead or request discussions on topics relevant to them, drawing on peer support to explore challenges and celebrate successes
2.30 pm Final comments and evaluation
3.00 pm Close
Book your ticket

2015 AVM Conference is Go!

keep-calm-and-carry-onBookings are now open for the 2015 AVM Conference on the 14 October at the Royal National Hotel, London, close to Euston and Kings Cross stations.
UPDATE: Conference is now fully booked
Eventbrite page here.
This promises to be a popular and exciting event so book early to avoid disappointment as last year’s conference sold out.
This year we have another packed agenda for you but also with plenty of time for you to network with other delegates something we know you all appreciate.  Our keynote speakers this year are Lynne Berry – Chair Commission on the Voluntary Sector & Aging  and Oonagh Aitken – CEO, Volunteering Matters.  There is a choice of six workshops throughout the day delivered by experts in their field and covering topics such as:

  • Accessibility in Action: sharing good practice on involving volunteers with disabilities
  • Securing board and CEO engagement and approval for your volunteering strategy
  • Corporate volunteering including charging models, using skilled corporates.

This is an event really not to be missed – even if we do say so ourselves.  Where else can you get a full one day conference dedicated to all things to do with volunteer management and lunch in central London from £80!
Don’t take our word for how useful this conference can be for those who manage/lead volunteers here is what attendees at last year’s conference had to say:

  • Unlike most conferences, this one was inspiring and full of healthy and useful debate
  • Very welcoming and well run event with excellent relevant content
  • Great external speakers and thought provoking workshops
  • I went away feeling inspired, motivated and with more confidence
  • Everything about it was excellent – the speakers, the seminars, the venue, the networking opportunities
  • It was my first time attending an AVM conference, and it was thoroughly enjoyable and worthwhile
  • Really useful to meet with my peers and discuss volunteer management
  • Great Networking and good workshops.

We look forward to seeing you at this year’s conference.
AVM Conference Team – Alan, Addam, Wendy, Steve, Anne-Marie and Karen ….

Your AVM Wants You!

It’s that time of year again where we invite AVM members to step forward, become a Director and help us take AVM forward as an organisation.
Now is an exciting time to both be joining AVM and indeed be a part of the Board of Directors.  AVM has exciting plans for it’s development over the next 12 months and we are looking for up to 4 new Directors to join and support us in meeting this challenge.  We are specifically looking for people with the following skills to join the board:

  • Marketing & Promotion of an organisation
  • Fundraising – seeking and securing funding
  • Information Technology – website/social media etc.
  • Finance – been a Treasurer
  • Organisational leadership
  • Leading and delivering change in an organisation
  • Media relations and engagement

If you have any of these skills or indeed know a member who does we’d love you /them to consider joining the AVM Board.  AVM cannot function without you it’s members stepping up and helping to shape your organisation.
If you are interested please read the attached AVM Directors Election Pack (link below). You’ll find all you need to know in here and also who to contact if you’d like to have an informal chat about what is involved.  Don’t delay as nominations close on the 4th September at 6pm.
AVM Directors Elections Pack 2015
We look forward to hearing from you.
Your AVM

AVM loses its founder

John Ramsey speaking at AVM's launch in 2007
John Ramsey speaking at AVM’s launch in 2007

We are sad to announce that our founder, John Ramsey, passed away on Saturday 20th September following a period of illness.
Although his death was not unexpected, the loss is a profound shock to all who knew him. John was a tireless champion of volunteering and volunteer management.
Without his passion, drive and energy the Association of Volunteer Managers would not exist. A great volunteer manager himself, his gift was bringing people together from across the field to build the organisation that we are today.
He was our Chair 2005-09, and continued to be actively involved with AVM. In typical fashion, John volunteered to run a workshop at the upcoming AVM conference in October. He will be sorely missed.
Many of you will have memories to share and tributes to pay. Do please leave your comments here below or email us at [email protected] if you prefer.
We will pass on all messages to his wife and daughter and extended family who can take comfort from the respect that he had within our community.

Guardian Jobs – no longer to post volunteering opportunities

Below is the statement made by the Guardian on its decision regarding the removal of volunteering opportunities from its jobs website.

Changes to Guardian Jobs volunteering advertisements
The Guardian has always been a great supporter of volunteering and we are committed to writing intelligently about the voluntary sector. However, in response to significant jobseeker feedback, we have decided that we will no longer be including volunteering listings on Guardian Jobs from 1 July 2014.
Whilst this will not affect advertisements for paid positions in the Voluntary sector – for which we will continue to be the number one source of quality candidates – recent feedback from jobseekers searching for paid work has indicated that they were seeing too many volunteering roles compared to paid positions. We tried to address this with a filter to enable users to exclude ‘volunteering’ positions, but the feedback remained the same and users stated that it was affecting their experience in looking for paid work on Guardian Jobs.
We appreciate that volunteering listings are important and we are therefore investigating how we can adopt a different approach for this in the future, and we will keep jobseekers and the sector updated on these plans.
We continue to offer charities a discount on job ads placed with Guardian Jobs.
If you have any questions about these changes please email [email protected]

For background

Post on by Addam Merali-Hosiene
Post on Third Sector by Sam Burne James