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A new report from Pro Bono Economics shows that, while charities were put under strain during 2022 with an increasing demand in services, 2023 looks like charities could benefit from up to 2.5 million new volunteers, aged 18-34, across the UK.

Our Time to Change Project in Surrey works across Surrey to increase the number of young people aged 19-25 years who are volunteering. In its first year, the project:

  • saw a 53% increase in the number of young volunteers that organiastions involved with the project recruited
  • increased volunteers managers’ skills and knowledge of how to reach and recruit young people
  • delivered ten ‘Recruiting and managing young volunteers’ training sessions to 90 people

We also carried out a survey, with 335 responses from young people, looking at how organisations could improve their recruitment of younger volunteers. The survey concluded that organisations should:

  • Offer a variety of flexible and informal volunteering options including virtual and micro-volunteering roles.
  • Ensure role descriptions provide a clear picture of what the role will entail so that it fully reflects the volunteer experience. An attractive design and attention to the language used in
    the role description is key to success.
  • Build their online presence (via social media and on their website).
  • Provide an easy and quick online application process.
  • Avoid making assumptions about young people’s motivations to volunteer and use a variety of messages designed to target and attract different young people.
  • Ensure that role descriptions highlight specifically how a young person could benefit from volunteering within the role rather than just listing skills they could gain.
  • Ensure they are open about the time commitment required in advance.
  • Use current young volunteers to share their positive volunteer stories, helping the organisation to engage and encourage more young people to volunteer, thus improving the
    diversity of their volunteer workforce.
  • Specifically target harder to reach groups of young people who may not be aware of the variety of volunteering opportunities available to them.

Surrey organisations interested in learning more about Time to Change should contact Project Manager Jordan Farrell.

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