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Volunteer Speed Matching. Dating Meets Volunteering. Picture Your Last Volunteer Fair…. How many prospective volunteers did you really interact with? How many hours did you spend creating the perfect, volunteer-catching display? And how bad did your back hurt from carrying it?!?

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volunteer speed matching

Volunteer Speed Matching

Dating Meets Volunteering

picture your last volunteer fair
Picture Your Last Volunteer Fair…
  • How many prospective volunteers did you really interact with?
  • How many hours did you spend creating the perfect, volunteer-catching display?
    • And how bad did your back hurt from carrying it?!?
  • How much did candy and freebies cost?
  • How many contacts actually volunteered ?
don t let this happen to you again
Don’t let this happen to you again!

There has to be a better way, right?!?

now picture an event where
Now Picture an Event Where…
  • You interact with at least 20 truly interested potential volunteers in just two hours… GUARANTEED!
  • You have a captive audience who isn’t worried about their next meeting.
  • You don’t have to beg. They come to you!
  • You save money! (No more freebies!)
  • You have FUN and the time flies!
what is volunteer speed matching
What is Volunteer Speed Matching?
  • Mimics concept of speed dating
  • Three minute interactions between 20 organizations and 20 – 60 prospective volunteers
  • Recruit in less than two hours!
who does it work for
Who Does it Work For?
  • Young professionals
  • Skilled volunteers
  • High school students
  • Baby Boomers
  • Anyone else who has little time!
who else is sponsoring it
Who Else is Sponsoring it
  • Minnesota Zoo
  • Metro Volunteers (Denver)
  • Generation Dayton and United Way’s Volunteer Connection
  • Volunteer Centre Dacorum (England)
  • Pleasant Valley High School (Illinois)
why volunteers love it
Why Volunteers Love It
  • Fast-paced
  • Pressure-free
  • Timed interactions
  • Interview 20 organizations in one session
  • Second “dates” at the volunteer’s request only
selecting your partner
Selecting Your Partner
  • Determine your audience
  • Partner with a local young professional organization, club, company or faith-based group
  • Craft an MOU to spell out responsibilities of the sponsoring organizations
  • 20 to 60 volunteers needed. RSVP’s are critical.
where and when to host
Where and When to Host
  • Venue should be a comfortable, casual atmosphere with a large open space
  • After-work hours are best
    • 6:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. recommended
  • Offer food and beverages
  • Provide bags for volunteers to carry materials collected and one nice freebie
selecting opportunities
Selecting Opportunities
  • For events sponsored within one organization:
    • Pre-select 20 opportunities that will be appealing to your audience
  • For HandsOn Action Centers or RSVP’s:
    • Pre-select 20 organizations with opportunities appealing to your audience to participate
how to choose opportunities
How to Choose Opportunities
  • Opportunities should be the best of your best… and they should be FUN!
  • Evening, weekend, group, one-time and on-going opportunities are popular
  • Each agency or opportunity must be represented by an engaging, FUN person!
  • RSVP’s from agencies are critical.
what agencies should bring
What Agencies Should Bring
  • One to two representatives – paid staff or volunteers who will CONNECT with audience
    • Coach representatives ahead of time on how to best identify with this audience
  • No more than one handout. Period.
  • A 30 second elevator speech. (No longer!)
  • Business cards
other tips
Other Tips
  • Have an engaging, concise speaker welcome the group
  • The speaker should “look like” your volunteer participants
  • Acknowledge sponsoring organization and partner
  • Plan to take plenty of photos!
let the matching begin
Let the Matching Begin!

Do you like me?

Circle Yes or No.

event structure
Event Structure
  • Registration, snacking and networking (10 – 20 minutes)
  • Brief introduction (10 minutes)
  • Matching (1 ½ hours)
    • Each “date” lasts 3 minutes
    • One minute between “dates”
  • Closing comments (10 minutes)
essential tools
Essential Tools
  • Cowbell or other loud indicator that time has changed
  • Scorecards for volunteers with names of agencies or opportunities
  • Stopwatch
  • Camera
  • At least four event assistants
during the introduction
During the Introduction
  • Welcome participants
  • Acknowledge sponsoring organization and partner
  • Give the basic rules…
  • Send volunteers and agency representatives to their stations
rules of engagment
Rules of Engagment
  • 1 to 3 volunteers at each table (depending on overall group size)
  • No table should be empty at start. Visit all tables.
  • All volunteers move clockwise or counter-clockwise at the bell. Movequickly!
  • Agency representatives and volunteers should spend 30 seconds each introducing themselves. Leave the rest for questions.
  • If a volunteer wants to be contacted later, he/she must circle that agency on the scorecard.
  • Thank everyone for attending
  • Acknowledge agencies (as a group) for their participation
  • Remind volunteers to turn in scorecards
  • Capture a group photo – agency representatives and volunteers together
immediate contact is required
Immediate Contact is Required
  • E-mail volunteers to thank them for their participation. Include contact information for agencies they indicated an interest in.
  • E-mail agency representatives to share names and contact information for volunteers who indicated an interest in a “second date”.
  • E-mail evaluations to both volunteers and agency representatives.
other tasks
Other Tasks
  • Send out a press release with a photo immediately following the event
  • Post photos online and forward the link to all volunteers and participating agencies
  • Track your “matches”… Who volunteered?
  • Ask for testimonials from both volunteers and agency representatives
let s practice
Let’s Practice!

Ready to go a few rounds?

presenters contact information

Presenters’ Contact Information

Clare Zlatic, Manager

United Way’s Volunteer Connection

(937) 225-3039



Nicolette Winner, Director

HandsOn West Central Ohio

(937) 778-5220, ext. 430



  • http://www.energizeinc.com/store/5-220-E-1
  • Google any of the organizations we listed in this presentation.
  • Packet of sample materials