“A volunteer action is like a stone thrown in a lake: its effect has a direct impact. At the same time, like ripples, volunteer efforts reach out far and wide to improve communities. Undeniably, volunteers rock.” – Volunteer Canada.
Summer camp volunteers are the best! Many of us depend on volunteers to help with fundraising, programming, staff training & leadership, facility and grounds maintenance and more! In fact, some camps in Alberta are staffed entirely by volunteers. We could not do what we do without the generosity of our supporters, especially those who choose to give their time, skills and expertise to camping in Alberta.
This week is National Volunteer Week! From April 12-18th we take the time to nationally recognize, celebrate and thank Canada’s volunteers. Findings from Volunteer Canada and the Investors Group’s 2013 Volunteer Recognition Study show that many volunteers appreciate a genuine thank you. So let’s make sure they feel appreciated and are given a truly sincere THANK YOU!
We put together some ideas on how your camp can personally thank those volunteers who have made a real difference out at camp.
5 Ways to Thank your Camp Volunteers
Host a Volunteer Appreciation Event. Invite your volunteers and donors out to camp for a banquet in their honour. They will appreciate being invited to enjoy a beautiful meal they didn't have to cook, meet other volunteers and having the opportunity to visit their camp. Give away door prizes, play games and make sure you give a thank you speech!
Give volunteers gift certificates. Show your appreciation by giving a small gift. A gift certificate to a local restaurant, cafe, the movies, bookstore or even Amazon.ca will show your volunteers how much you appreciate them and that you don't take them for granted.
Send out thank you cards. Put it on your calendar to send out a personalized thank you card to each one of your volunteers. This means you’ll have to keep track of who volunteered when to make sure no one is missed. Write the card yourself instead of printing out an impersonal message for everyone and pop it in the mail!
Start a volunteer awards program. This might take some organizing, but many larger corporations have volunteer awards programs. Volunteers earn ‘status’ by the amount of time they donate and are rewarded as they accomplish amounts of hours volunteered or other related goals. You don’t have to give them expensive rewards. Even a certificate that recognizes the amount of time they’ve contributed, putting their name on a plaque that hangs somewhere at your camp, or a special mention at your camps next fundraising event goes a long way.
Offer them discounts for your camp program or services. If you have volunteers that have continuously contributed large amounts of time to your camp, offer them discounts on camp for their children or a discount on rentals or activities for a family or corporate event.
Thank you for contributing to the Alberta Camping Association!
The Alberta Camping Association is largely operated by a group of very committed volunteers. Our Board of Directors and all of our sub-committees are made up entirely of passionate camp professionals that have generously donated their time and expertise to help enhance and promote camping in Alberta. THANK YOU!!
More recently the ACA has initiated "Working Groups". These are volunteer groups who are interested in helping with the "feet on the ground" work of the Alberta Camping Association. From web data entry, hosting workshops and events, and helping with other administrative task these volunteer groups will become a very important part of our operations. Although we've just begun to recruit these groups, the ACA would like to thank everyone who signs up in advance!
Learn more about National Volunteer Week Canada