Erin George is a master volunteer recruiter and coordinator. That’s why she works as the Volunteer & Outreach Coordinator for GHCC’s Adult Learning Center (we are so lucky to have her). At this year’s Neighborhood Institute, Erin will lead the workshop “Engaging Volunteers for Long-Term Support.”
Tell us about your background.
I graduated from UC Berkeley with a B.A. in Philosophy, then moved to Portland, where I studied Russian. In 2010, I accepted an Americorps VISTA position with GHCC, where I collaborated with staff at the Adult Learning Center to create a workforce development program for participants. In 2011, I was hired by the Adult Learning Center as Volunteer & Outreach Coordinator. In this position, I am responsible for recruiting, screening, training, and supervising our volunteer tutors and classroom assistants. I also coordinate the Center’s learner recruitment and other outreach and PR initiatives, including the annual Scrabble Fundraiser for Literacy.
Why do you love where you live?
As a West Coast transplant, it took me a while to settle into Baltimore. Over the past 3 years that I’ve lived in Charles Village, I have come to love my neighborhood’s idiosyncratic architecture and tree-lined streets. I also appreciate the proximity of a variety of great local businesses, the Waverly Farmer’s Market, and cultural institutions like the BMA, the Peter Rawlings Conservatory, and Community Concerts at Second.
What do you hope people will learn from your workshop?
In order to accomplish our mission with limited financial resources, nonprofits rely heavily on committed volunteers. Because organizations do not pay volunteers wages, they frequently do not invest adequate time in providing them with the training and support they need to be effective. Careful planning of new volunteer programs and evaluation of existing programs requires an investment on the part of organizations, but pays off in improved volunteer retention and outcomes. It is my hope that participants in the Volunteer Management workshop will emerge with a better understanding of how to design and manage an effective volunteer program.