I previously wrote a blog post about volunteers. This post is a different take on the subject.
A grant writer should learn about the volunteers who help a nonprofit. As an example, many companies provide grants where the employee volunteers. A grant writer only needs the volunteer’s permission to use their employee number.
On applications, a grant writer should note the number of volunteers and hours worked, even if not required. The more volunteers there are, the stronger the justification since it shows community support.
However, data on volunteers should be explained in relation to the size of the nonprofit. The number of volunteers and hours worked are only relative to the number of people helped by the nonprofit. A few volunteers for a small nonprofit are just as good as larger numbers in a bigger nonprofit.
Volunteers are crucial to the success of a nonprofit. Without them, labor costs soar to levels that are difficult to justify. To learn about volunteers, a grant writer should talk to the volunteer coordinator.
If this position is not filled or does not exist, there may be no need to get grants. Without management of the volunteers, the nonprofit’s primary labor source is unstable. Who will reliably help perform the mission? Foundations do not want to fund only labor.
Fortunately, most nonprofits have some management of their volunteers or they would not be around for long. Writing about volunteers in a grant application is an easy way to help justify the need for funding.