Volunteer Fairs

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One great way for companies to get employees more involved in philanthropy is to run volunteer fairs. By doing so, employees are given the chance to meet with representatives from multiple non-profit organizations in the community, find out about volunteer opportunities, and connect with one or more that they’d like to help.

More and more these days, it seems like companies are encouraging personal philanthropic behavior, so for these employers, volunteer fairs bring the opportunities right to their doorstep. When an employer takes care to say to employees, “We care, and we want to support your philanthropic endeavors.”

Volunteer fairs are also often seen at high schools and college campuses, as students become more independent and open up their worldview to include others that might not be as fortunate as them. Lots of students have service hours to complete, too, so offering a volunteer fair at a school makes that much more accessible.

But once students enter the real world, it can be easy to become disconnected from the philanthropic world. We fall into the routine of work and sometimes forget that those organizations are still out there, still needing our help. That’s why volunteer fairs put on by employers are such a great idea.

Moody’s Corporation, for example, has hosted volunteer fairs for nine years at its headquarters, two years in its London offices, and one year for its San Francisco offices. The company, run by CEO Raymond McDaniel, showcases eight to ten nonprofits during lunch hours. This gives employees a chance to meet with different groups, learn about their causes, and find out about volunteer opportunities.

Volunteer fairs are also great for nonprofits because it gives them a chance to advertise themselves for free, find new and excited volunteers, and reach out to local community members.