by Caitlin Huston
Volunteers can now find the perfect organization to match their interest, thanks to a United Way website tool.
The Cass County United Way recently acquired a “Get Connected” tool, which matches up a volunteer’s interests with an organization that needs those skills. The program is set to officially launch July 1, but organizations are already signing on, according to Lita Rouser, director of impact strategies and community investment at United Way.
Rouser said anyone who wants to volunteer can go to the United Way website and click on the volunteer tab to get to the “Get Connected” tool. Once there, volunteers can enter their interests and what hours or days they’d like to work.
The tool will then match the volunteers up with organizations like nonprofits, churches and schools, Rouser said.
Rouser said United Way decided to offer this service after years of people walking into the office and asking where they can volunteer.
“We’ve kind of been this informal volunteer center anyhow,” Rouser said.
In addition to helping out the volunteers, Rouser said the site will give organizations more of a web presence, especially if they don’t have a website.
“This could suffice as a mini-website for them,” Rouser said.
Rouser said the organizations can include videos and text like mission statements.
The tool is offered at no cost to either the organization or the volunteers.
“Get Connected” is already up and running on the website, Rouser said, but it won’t officially launch until July 1.
Three organizations have signed up so far, she said.
Stacey Lods, membership marketing director of the Cass County YMCA, said they decided to become part of the service, because it was an easy way to help manage their volunteers.
“It’s very user-friendly,” Lods said.
The YMCA often uses volunteers for special events, to help in the office and to coach youth basketball teams, Lods said.
United Way offered a training earlier this month and will hold another training for organizations today.
If you go:
• WHO: Company leaders or staff members who coordinate volunteers
• WHAT: Free training on how to set up a Get Connected page
• WHEN: 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. today
• WHERE: Community Room at Ivy Tech
• INFO: Interested parties should contact the United Way, 574-753-3533, to register before the event.
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