AL!VE Partner Connection

Reed Dewey; AL!VE Partner & Board Member

Useful Tips:

1.  Adequately scope out the right pro-bono projects. It takes time and thoughtful deliberation to figure out what pro bono projects really meet the needs of your agency prior to finding the right talent to get the work done. Check out the Taproot Foundation's new book, Powered By Pro Bono (link below).

2.  Looking close to home for pro-bono help. After coming up with good projects, seek out those who already love your agency. While you may be already utilizing the professional skills of board members, consider branching out to broader pool of stakeholders, including donors, members, and current or past clients.

3.  Promote specific pro-bono opportunities - especially for smaller assignments. It's amazing how many organizations don't have a wish list of pro-bono volunteer projects ready to go. Since prospective volunteers respond more to specific requests, put out your needs in the newsletter, on the website, and through social media.

4.  Convert one-shot pro-bono volunteers into ongoing volunteers.  The gold of pro bono engagement is retaining volunteers to do other similar projects or take on an ongoing responsibility in their area of expertise. Retaining skilled volunteers lowers the amount of staff time needed for volunteer orientation and training.

Great Resources:

Pro Bono Readiness Survey by the LBG Research Institute, funded by Capital One gives one of the best snap shots of where nonprofits are now with skilled and pro bono volunteering. Read this report to get up to speed on where the opportunities are.

Powered by Pro Bono: The Nonprofits Step-by-Step Guide to Scoping, Securing, Managing, and Scaling Pro Bono Resources (Taproot Foundation). While you'll have to pay for this new how-to manual, it's well worth your small investment.

Beyond Cash - Guide for Nonprofit Boards by the Taproot Foundation. This free and practical publication will get you started down the road to pro bono volunteering.

Skilled Volunteering 101 Handbook.  Is Your Organization Ready to Engage? This how-to guide from Common Impact is excellent, full of charts, a check list, and with good background behind how to implement a successful skilled volunteering program.
Newsletter - Winter 2013

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