Create a New Project
A project is any event, program or initiative around which you would like to organize volunteers. You must be have an ‘organizer’ or ‘administrator’ role in order to create projects. Once logged into the volunteer portal with the appropriate role, you may 1) click ‘Projects’ (Briefcase Icon) from the main menu, then 2) click New Project.
There are two major steps to setting up your new project
- Define the project
This describes the project and how it should behave in the volunteer portal
- Create the different types of needs you have for the project
These are the things volunteers will actually sign-up for
1) Define the Project
The system allows you to identify information that describes your project (to potential volunteers), categorizes it, and defines its behavior.
There are several fields that help to organize the important aspects of a project you may want to describe for the benefit of your potential volunteers.
Branch – Identify the primary branch this project should be associated with. If the project is not affiliated with a specific branch, it is recommended to select the corporate branch (aka association)
Unique Name – Provide a unique name for this project.
Description - The project description is intended to provide a summary of the initiative to existing and potential volunteers. There are several other fields designed to help provide a well-round description of the project. These include an image, address, community partners, goals, contacts, safety information, and the cancellation policy. We suggest a minimum of 100 words and a maximum of 500.
Project Image – Designate an image that reinforces the branding or goals, or intended beneficiaries of the project.
Project Address – Enter the full address/location for the event.
Community Partners – Enter any community partners with which your organization is working for this project
Project Goals - Describe the goals that this volunteer project hopes to achieve. If there are actual metrics (e.g., number of meals served, event participants, books read, or trees planted) then by all means describe them here. This should serve to inspire the volunteer to help in achieving that goal. We suggest a minimum of 50 words and a maximum of 500.
Contact Details - Please list the names and contact information for any volunteer liaisons. These may be from your organization or a partner.
Safety Information - List anything the volunteer must know to be safe when working this project. Examples might include the proper attire, policies, or other instructions.
Cancellation Policy - Describe the policy for event cancellation including methods of notification.
Select one or more values that best represent the project in each the following categories:
Area of Focus – National areas of focus (Youth development, healthy living, social responsibility)
Intended Beneficiaries – Those the project intends to help (Animals, children & youth, seniors, veterans, etc.)
Impact Areas – Category of service this project fulfills (Arts & culture, disaster relief, hunger, homelessness, etc.)
National Initiatives – National programs to which this project may be affiliated (Togetherhood, Healthy Kids Day, etc.)
Publishing (to the Project Catalog)
The project catalog is where volunteers go to browse through your volunteer opportunities.
Publish Mode – the mode defines which types of users should be able to see this project in the catalog. If set to public, for example, any type of person may view the project. The different mode settings are as follows:
- Public – any user, whether they are logged in may see the project
- Volunteers – only users who are logged in may see the project
- Administrators – only users who are logged in and have administrative rights may see the project
- Hidden – The project does not appear in the project catalog for any user.
Publish Start Date – The date the project should start appearing in the project catalog
Publish End Date – The date the project should stop appearing in the project catalog
These settings will not have an effect until the Jan 2016 release of the system
Enable Personal Kiosk – Allows volunteers to self-sign-in from their personal mobile device
Enable Personal Kiosk Geolocation – System will check volunteer’s physical location to make sure they are
within a specific range of the project address before allowing them to sign-in from their personal device
Kiosk Geolocation Range – Distance (in meters) the volunteer can be within the project address to consider them to be on-site.
Enable Volunteer Self-Report Hours – When a volunteer manually reports hours (hours that were not scheduled or tracked via shifts), the volunteer will be required to associate the hours with an existing project. By enabling this feature, the volunteer can associate those self-reported hours against this project. If disabled, this project will not appear as an option.
Enable Wait Listing – If there are no available slots for a particular need and wait listing is NOT enabled, the sign-up button will change to show the need as “full”. If wait listing is enabled, the volunteer will instead be able to add themselves to a wait list should something become available.
Wait List Mode – If wait listing is enabled, you may choose an automatic or manual ‘mode’ to handle those on the wait list.
Automatic mode will automatically place the next available person on the wait list to the need should a slot become available. This would automatically send the volunteer an email confirming their assignment and providing instructions should the volunteer no longer want the assignment.
Manual mode will require an administrator to move an individual from the wait list to an open assignment.
2) Create Needs
Congratulations! If you have completed the previous step, your project has been created, now you will be ask to define the specific needs you have - in other words, what those things the volunteer can sign-up for.
A shift has a date, role, sign-ups (start/end times and the min/max assignees).
The role must be created first. A role is a specific job an individual may perform as part of their volunteer shift. This should communicate the duties and procedures required to be successful in this role. For each role, you may specify a minimum age (in years) to work this shift. Volunteers under the specified age will not be allow to sign up for this role. Additionally, you may specify one or more credentials that may be required to sign-up for this role. For example, one role may require a special background check, a drivers license, or a medical certification. If the volunteer does not yet have one or more of the credentials, the system will give the volunteer the opportunity to apply for it/them.
With your roles defined, you may specify a rule for the date(s) of the shift(s). You may specify a single day or rules for a recurring shift. The shift might recur weekly (e.g., every Tuesday and Thursday) or monthly (e.g., the 1st of every month or the 2nd Monday of every other month, etc.)
With your roles and dates defined, you may specify the time slots (start/end times, and the min and max for each role). The same role(s) may be selected multiple times if that role is required for multiple time slots for each day chosen.
A task is something you are asking a volunteer to do on their own time. In other words, they are not required to fulfill the task during a window of time you specify (that would be a shift). You can specify a due date so the volunteer knows by what date to complete the task. As with all needs, you may specify a minimum age (in years) to work this task. Volunteers under the specified age will not be allow to sign up for this task. Additionally, you may specify one or more credentials that may be required to sign-up for this task. For example, one task may require a special background check, a drivers license, or a medical certification. If the volunteer does not yet have one or more of the credentials, the system will give the volunteer the opportunity to apply for it/them.
An item is something you are asking a volunteer to lend, donate or bring to help your project. You can specify a due date so the volunteer knows by what date to deliver the item(s). You may specify a minimum and maximum quantity required. When the volunteer signs-up for the item they may also specify the quantity they are pledging. As with all needs, you may specify a minimum age (in years) to sign-up for this item. Volunteers under the specified age will not be allow to sign up for the item. Additionally, you may specify one or more credentials that may be required to sign-up. If the volunteer does not yet have one or more of the credentials, the system will give the volunteer the opportunity to apply for it/them.
A position is a long-term commitment to take on a more staff-like role for the project or organization. An example might include a volunteer manager, project chair, or committee member. Volunteers would be committing to this position for a period that spans days, weeks, months, or even years. This is quite different from a "role" which describes a particular job relating to shift work. Many times, the work related to a position is unscheduled and therefore done on a volunteers own time. Other times, a volunteer that holds a position may separately sign-up to perform shift work, tasks, or bring items. As with all needs, you may specify a minimum age (in years) to work this position. Volunteers under the specified age will not be allow to sign up for this position. Additionally, you may specify one or more credentials that may be required to sign-up for this position. For example, one role may require a special background check, training, or a professional certification. If the volunteer does not yet have one or more of the credentials, the system will give the volunteer the opportunity to apply for it/them.