It is proven that kids who participate in sports get higher grades, have greater confidence and self-esteem, maintain strong peer relationships, have greater connections with their schools, have more academically oriented friends, avoid risky behavior, and have greater involvement in volunteer work. They are physically and mentally well rounded thanks to their participation in a youth sports program. The volunteers who coached or mentored these children instilled their own goodwill in them, thus resulting in those kids becoming responsible volunteering adults and doing the same. The positive cycle comes full circle.
According to the National Alliance for Youth Sports, without volunteers the youth sports world would come to a screeching halt! That’s because the majority of youth sport programs in the United States rely on volunteers – usually parents – to serve as coaches, or to hold other roles, like volunteer administrators or officials. Because of this, volunteer candidacy can be selective. Finding the right volunteer is achievable and there are several resourceful ways to ensure that your organization finds the BEST:
- Broadcast: More than likely your current volunteers have friends or family members that may be a good fit, so ask them to spread the word. Recruiting from within lessens the likelihood of an unsuitable volunteer being recommended.
- Enlighten: Host community events to educate prospective volunteers about the youth sports program’s offerings. Use these forums as an opportunity to encourage parents to not only register their children for sports programs but to also volunteer themselves.
- Solicit: A volunteer job description should be descriptive and outline the required tasks and desired skills. Also include any disclaimers, such as background checks or association and training fees, to deter any unfit candidates from applying.
- Target: Advertising costs money! Social media and word of mouth are FREE. Also there’s a chance that one of your volunteers or parents have graphic design experience and can design some flyers or brochures for you at no charge.
In addition to fitting into an organizations culture and supporting in its’ mission, the ideal volunteer must also be able to successfully participate in a thorough background screening and child safety training. Safeguarding the youth with qualified mentors and coaches will ensure that they become productive members of society.
What tactics has your organization used to enlist All-Star volunteers?