7 Ways a Volunteer Coordinator is Indispensable

Volunteers are recognized across Minnesota for their important contributions to the success of adult learners. However, their contributions would not be possible without dedicated ABE staff who coordinate and support volunteers.

Here are 7 ways in which a volunteer coordinator is indispensable:

  1. A coordinator increases a program’s capacity to offer specialized tutoring and classes like a reading lab, conversation circle, or math help. These specialized classes increase student persistence. Volunteer coordinators grow your program.
  2. A coordinator matches up learners with specific needs like U.S. citizenship preparation with tutors. Have a student that wants to study a particular topic? A volunteer coordinator can recruit a tutor.
  3. A coordinator finds just the right volunteer(s) to help in a multi-level class. A teacher with a multi-level class doesn’t have much time to dedicate to volunteer recruitment.
  4. A coordinator keeps highly skilled and enthusiastic volunteers involved with your program. A volunteer coordinator can take the time to learn a volunteer’s motivations and skills to ensure she feels she is making a difference in students’ lives.
  5. A coordinator recruits volunteers to cross off important but not urgent tasks on your to do list. Volunteers give the gift of their time. They can create visual materials, call absent students, teach students to use their phones, or help with any number of other tasks.
  6. A coordinator builds a strong sense of community, leading to improved learner retention. Everyone knows the volunteer coordinator: teachers, students, staff and volunteers. Volunteer coordinators bring in community members who want to get to know their neighbors. Coordinators can arrange special events and invite volunteers and students to participate.
  7. A coordinator lets teachers say, “Oh, my coordinator handles that.” Busy teachers appreciate having a coordinator who can recruit tutors with special interests (love to organize?), find a different placement for a volunteer that isn’t the right fit, and express appreciation in creative ways.

For more information about how volunteer coordinators contribute to the success of adult learners, contact Burgen Young ([email protected]) or Allison Runchey ([email protected]).

Minnesota Literacy Council