In recent months, we have come face to face with unprecedented challenges as the world is now in full response mode to the Coronavirus outbreak.
Many organizations have had to temporarily cease engaging volunteers, yet others see opportunities to engage volunteers to provide services amid these new conditions and meet pressing community needs.
While no one can predict day to day what new developments will emerge, the need to be nimble does not override the need to plan. Planning, in fact, can allow us to be more nimble, and acquire the resources needed to implement new strategies.
Within days of the pandemic announcement, the City of Fort Collins reached out to VQ Volunteer Strategies (and others) for advice and resources. City leadership had empowered the city volunteer engagement director to develop a plan to leverage the community’s 10,000+ volunteers to respond and assist. Of course, safety and protecting the health of staff, volunteers, and residents was and remains of primary concern. Yet, the city supported the engagement director and her team to find a way to leverage their community’s strongest assets – their residents – to help each other amid this crisis. Within days, they developed a plan, which then guided the design and launch of a new website and program to respond. Kudos to Fort Collins.
Combining that plan with elements from VQ’s experience in strategic planning for volunteer engagement, we developed the template below to help you design your own plan to guide this work.
As we have said many times about volunteer engagement strategic plans, a plan is a GPS that can help you reach your destination. While we may not know our exact destination amidst this pandemic, we do know that having a plan will help us continue moving forward. Develop a plan to guide your way.