Parental Involvement That Makes a Difference – Recruiting and keeping volunteers! Connecting with your parents!

Class taught August 27th 2011 at the VNET Kick Off Event



Taught by Shari Pierce


5 Things Volunteers Love:

Welcome (“So glad to see you!”)

Why? (“We’re doing this because…”)

Appreciation (“Thank you for coming.”)

Choices (“These are the things we need to do…”)

Schedule (“Your shift is done. Here is your replacement.”)


Patterson Elementary (Karen Reynolds) has found this website to be very helpful in organizing volunteers:


5 Things That Will Keep a Person from Ever Volunteering Again


1. “Oh, we need you to help out for at least another hour.” (better to make one person responsible for one little thing with a definite start and stop time)

2. “Sorry. We’re finished already. We don’t need you.” (interpreted as: “Not only do we not need you, we don’t even care enough about you to call and let you know.”)

3. “We’re about to start. We just need stuff from Walmart.” (interpreted as “Your time is not important to us, and we are not organized.”)

4. “You’re doing it all wrong!”

5. “Here’s your spot. Good luck.” (no partner, no prior experience)

Carnival booths: laminated instructions in each booth with info on where to get more prizes, etc.


Asking potential volunteers to help out at a higher level:

“I can’t find anyone for (e.g., Secretary). Do you have any suggestions?”


Getting teachers involved:

Teachers love to win stuff! Schools give teachers anywhere between $50 and $300 per year for their classrooms. One school delivers the allotment like a sweepstakes prize with balloons and whistles.

Treat teachers with respect.


Attracting Volunteers

Have an event where all parents attend. Examples: swim party, parent marching night (HS band), movie night, etc. Make sure volunteer info is readily available at these events.