Hot Topics Archive

Month Topic Update
Hot Topic for November 2020 Survey Examples

Volunteer Exit Survey

Staff Survey re: Volunteer Needs During the Pandemic

Survey of Branch Library Volunteer Coordinators

Annual Volunteer Survey San Jose Public Library

Annual Volunteer Survey Cedar Rapids Public Library

Five Survey Templates to Measure Volunteer and Board Satisfaction

Volunteer Satisfaction Surveys: 10 Ways to Get it Right

The 9 most Important Survey Design Tips & Best Practices

Questionnaire Design Tip Sheet

2nd Hot Topic For October 2020 Volunteer Coordinator Job Descriptions

City of Orange CA Volunteer Coordinator

Sacramento Public Library Volunteer Coordinator

Volunteer Engagement Specialist Job Description -- Indianapolis

Branch Volunteer Coordinators’ Responsibilities – Indianapolis

A Letter to Nonprofits that Want to Hire a Volunteer Manager


Hot Topic for October 2020 More Pandemic Resources

Building Better COVID-Related Volunteer Roles

Volunteer Safety Training during COVID-19 – Orange Public Library

New Research (during the pandemic!): Civic Engagement: What We Know, What We’re Learning, and What Comes Next

How to Prioritize When Everything Feels Important

Social Media & Blog Content Generation Guidelines for Staff and Volunteers – Cedar Mill & Bethany Community Libraries OR

Capacity Commons Guidebook on Skills-Based Volunteerism


Hot Topic for September 2020 More on Skilled and Virtual Volunteers

“Designing Virtual Opportunities, Managing Remote Volunteers” – Recording of August 26, 2020 webinar


Virtual Volunteer Orientation San Jose PL

Virtual Homework Help Coach Online Training - San Jose PL

Volunteer Handbook – San Jose PL

Virtual Volunteering: a Guide for Nonprofits

Nonprofit Skills-Based Volunteering Toolkit

Skills-Based Volunteerism 201: Project Scoping and Planning - Archived webinar from ServeOhio

Illinois Conference on Volunteer Administration (ICOVA) Session Recordings

Hot Topic for August 2020 More COVID -19 Ideas and Protocols

COVID-19 Story Project

COVID-19 Story Project Interviewer

COVID-19 Volunteer Acknowledgment Form

COVID-19 Library Volunteer Agreement

COVID-19 Safety Protocols Training Powerpoint

Are Young People Replacing Older People as the Key Volunteering Group?

Resources to Help Manage Volunteers During the Coronavirus Pandemic

If Your Board Looked Like Your Community

“Because You’re Worth It: Showcasing the Value of You and Your Volunteer Program”


2nd Hot Topic For July 2020 Re-Opening the Library to Volunteers During COVID-19

COVID Safety Training – Boulder CO

Volunteer Safety Precautions – Indianapolis PL, IN

Volunteer General Safety Guidelines – Cedar Rapids IA

REALM Research Project (Reopening Archives, Libraries, and Museums)

Home Delivery Volunteer Safety Requirements Sign-Off Sheet – Boulder CO

Changes to “Holds Hunter” Volunteer Process during COVID-19 – Cedar Rapids IA

Book Drop Helper and Sorter Volunteer Job Description – Boulder CO

Book Drop Helper and Sorter Training Powerpoint – Boulder CO

Book Drop Helper and Sorter Training Video #1 – Boulder CO

Book Drop Helper and Sorter Training Video #2 – Boulder CO

*NOTE: We have added a COVID-19 tag to the Get Involved Clearinghouse – if you just want an overview of what’s specifically here on that topic, type COVID-19 into the search box above.

Hot Topic for July 2020 Diverse and Inclusive Volunteer Engagement

Fighting Racism Through Diverse and Inclusive Volunteer Engagement Programming (Part 1 of 2)


Fighting Racism Through Diverse and Inclusive Volunteer Engagement Programming (Part 2 of 2)


Recognizing Racism in Volunteer Engagement


Systemic Exclusion in Volunteer Engagement


Engagement as a Path to Inclusion and Justice


Talking racial equity? Make sure you understand these 17 words


Why Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Matter for Nonprofits


Racial Equity and Inclusion Resources for Volunteer Engagement Leaders


Hot Topic for June 2020 Engage Virtual Volunteers While We Shelter in Place – TEEN EDITION

Austin Public Library Teen Virtual Volunteer Program

When the Austin Public Library closed for the corona virus there was concern about the need to keep staff busy during telework, so Stephanie designed teen volunteer assignments to function more like a teen program that would create supervision opportunities for staff.

Here are the virtual volunteer positions she created for teens:

More Teen Ideas:

Boulder Teen Summer Volunteer Roles During COVID-19

Woodland QuaranTEEN Book Reviews

2nd Hot Topic For May 2020 Engage Virtual Volunteers While We Shelter in Place - Part 3

Many thanks to our library friends around the country who are sharing their COVID-19 plans and materials!

Sample Volunteer Re-Engagement Surveys:

Assessing Volunteers’ Interest in Returning After Shelter in Place

Assess HomeBound Delivery Volunteers’ Interest in Continuing after COVID19 Program Changes in Place

Ideas for Summer and Re-Opening Volunteer Roles:

Teen Summer Volunteer Roles During COVID-19

Book Drop Helper and Sorter Volunteer Job Description


Hot Topic for May 2020 Engage Virtual Volunteers While We Shelter in Place - Part 2

Here are some more ideas for keeping current volunteers engaged and/or expanding services:

Queens Public Library Social Media Ambassadors

Austin Public Library Social Media Ambassadors

Queens Public Library Covid19 Oral Histories Project

Virtual Volunteering Opportunities – San Jose Public Library 

And some current volunteer job descriptions could be amended to describe service provided on an online platform:

Job Center Volunteer – Chandler Public Library AZ

Job Center Coach, Sacramento Public Library

Homework Coach – San Jose Public Library

EBooks Coach – Huntington Beach Public Library

ESL Conversation Club Facilitator – San Jose Public Library

Please consider sharing your materials at the link below to be added to the Clearinghouse to keep others from having to re-invent the wheel!


Hot Topic for April 2020 Engage Virtual Volunteers While We Shelter in Place

Need to find ways to keep your current volunteers engaged? Or just need different kinds of help during this uncertain time? Consider Virtual Volunteers – they do work for you from home!

Could you use a graphic designer, researcher, writer, translator, proofreader, or video editor? Those opportunities can be posted on VolunteerMatch and marked “virtual” rather than “one location.” VolunteerMatch has also added to each volunteer opportunity posting a chance for you to answer this question: “Is this opportunity helping your organization respond to the COVID-19 crisis?” When you answer yes, your posting will get visibility in additional ways.

Here are some more resources to get you started:

Never a Better time to Explore Virtual Volunteering than NOW
How to Tap Into the Power of Virtual Volunteers

VolunteerMatch Covid-19 Hub

Virtual Volunteer Success Story – Brownwood Texas

Spanish Language Virtual Document Translator Job Description -  Salinas CA

Social Media Specialist Job Description – CA State Library

4 minute interview California State Library Virtual Volunteer – Social Media Specialist


What’s New for March 2020 New Resources

How to Find a Volunteer Management System that Actually Meets Your Needs


14 Volunteer Interview Questions


The Volunteer Perspective – Industry Insights 2019



What's New for February 2020 Online Book Sales

Mesa (AZ) Public Library's amazing online booksale operation (about $100,000/year) which is a volunteer driven project supervised by the library's volunteer coordinator. We are grateful to Mesa's volunteer coordinator who has shared a 10- minute video about the project, as well as the volunteer job description and a number of invaluable, well-researched training pieces that can be used to prepare volunteers to take on these roles. You can find it all here:


What's New for January 2020 New Resources

Five Survey Templates to Measure Volunteer and Board Satisfaction

The essential guide to managing volunteers at your nonprofit

Beware of these 6 trends lurking in your volunteer program


Volunteer Management: How to Get It Right


What's New for December 2019 New Resources

Archived Webinar

November 20 VolunteerMatch “Tour”

New Volunteer Job Descriptions

Creation Station Coordinator – Show Low AZ

Library Assistant – Show Low AZ

Computer Coach – Show Low AZ

Also New This Month: New Maker Space Photos

Hot Topic for November 2019 Archived Webinars


Writing Accurate & Useful Volunteer Position Descriptions - March 2020

Connecting with Today’s Volunteers to Transform the Friends of the Library - September 2019

Revitalizing Library Volunteer Engagement - 2018

Successfully Managing Library Volunteer Program Changes - August 2018


What's New for October 2019 New Resources

Do’s & Don’ts of Supervising Library Volunteers

Adult Volunteer Application – Huntington Beach

Volunteer Handbook – Pacific Grove

Beyond Retention: How to get better data to inform your volunteer engagement strategy


What's New for September 2019 Recognition, Part 2

Don't Just Recognize Volunteers, Invest in Them . . . and in Yourself

Volunteer Recognition: Matching Motivation to Rewards

When Recognition Hurts Recruitment (and what we might do about it)

Recognizing Online Volunteers and Using the Internet to Honor ALL Volunteers


What's New for August 2019 New Resources

Skills Based Volunteering ToolKit

Building Capacity Through Volunteer Leadership

Want to Write a Volunteer Program Annual Report? Here’s How to Start

Why Should We Pay Attention to Volunteering Trends

CRM Integration

What's New for July 2019 Recognition

Rethinking Volunteer Recognition

Volunteer Appreciation Guide

Volunteer Recognition: Just Say No to Years of Service Awards

3 Ways to Recognize Volunteers

Recognizing Volunteers in 2017

Celebrate Collective Accomplishments, Not Volunteered Time