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Pages tagged "Volunteering"


The gifts of giving back: 5 reasons I volunteer

I’ve always been a high achiever, so naturally when I learned that I could earn extra credit for doing volunteer work related to my degree, I seized the opportunity. Within a matter of weeks, I landed an open position at the Walker Art Center that was a great fit for my hectic class schedule and love of contemporary art.

It didn’t take long for me to catch the volunteering bug.

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How to get the most out of YNPN-TC membership

First off, let’s clear up one question: How do I know if I’m a member of the Young Nonprofit Professionals Network of the Twin Cities (YNPN-TC)? If you’re anything like me, you might not be exactly sure what membership means. I started attending YNPN-TC events several years ago as I was finishing up a term of national volunteer service and starting to explore my career options. Did that make me a member? I got more involved and starting volunteering on the Programming Committee. Did that make me a member? I applied and joined the board. Did that make me a member?

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Short answer: YES! (From the get-go!)

Long answer: Once you attend an event with us and/or sign up for our email list, you’re official! YNPN-TC membership is 100% free so you never have to worry about paying dues. (Side note: We now have 501(c)(3) status as a nonprofit, and supporters are always welcome to donate to us to help us continue to provide high-quality programming without charging a fee to members.)

Now that you know how simple it is to become a member, let’s talk about how to get the most out of your membership.

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It’s time to give volunteers the keys to the family car...

main.jpgMinnesota is a great place to be a volunteer… There is a robust nonprofit community with plenty of meaningful opportunities.  The latest numbers (from 2015) have 35.4% of residents volunteering ranking Minnesota 2nd in the nation!

Yet Minnesota ranks 12th in volunteer retention at 68.5%.  How is it that nearly a third of all Minnesotan volunteers do not return?

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Hello to Good-bye (A Treatise on Transitions)

“When I let go of what I am, I become what I might be.” ― Lao Tzu

Emergence as evolution

As the founder of Minnesota Rising, a generationally-based group, I’m often asked about the point at which our Millennial generation will no longer be referred to as “emerging,” but instead could be considered “emerged.” While there will be a point in time at which, as individuals and as a cohort, we could be said to have moved on from the “emerging leader” moniker, that is not to refute that our journey and learning is lifelong and thus we will always be emerging into the next experience. For this reason, it will be increasingly valuable to have a sustaining generational cohort to help us mark, grieve, and celebrate transitions, and with whom we will be able to note our progress as individuals and as a group.

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Innovations in Volunteer Management: The Core Four

Excited VolunteersVolunteer management isn’t often an area many of us have formalized training in; yet it is an integral part of any nonprofit program. As young nonprofit professionals, many of us find ourselves involved in volunteer management in some capacity or another, and as it is one of the best places for an organization to innovate, it may be worth a deeper look. 

At the Minnesota Council of Nonprofits Annual Conference, Mary Quirk, executive director of Minnesota Association for Volunteer Administration, and Zeeda Magnuson, associate director of HandsOn Twin Cities, outlined some of the most notable changes in what volunteers are looking for, including shorter term commitments, building and utilizing work place skills, flexible hours, and group volunteering opportunities.

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Get me Storyifed: Looking back at We'd Be MIA Without You!

On April 24, YNPN Twin Cities held We’d Be MIA Without You, our first-ever member and volunteer appreciation event, graciously hosted by the Minneapolis Institute of Arts.

We created the event to educate our membership about what goes into making YNPN-TC the great organization that it is and to recognize the individuals that make it great. YNPN-TC is a 100% volunteer-run organization, so we really would be MIA without our active members and volunteers!

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Giving Back Without Going Broke

‘Tis the season of winter holidays and year-end giving campaigns. Along with the frigid temperatures, there’s a tangible spirit of goodwill and generosity in the air. While many of us work to fundraise for our own organizations, we’re also inspired to give back and support a wide breadth of worthy causes this season. But, when you live on a nonprofit income, it’s not always easy to make the pieces fit.

Luckily, with a little creativity, you can give back in major ways this year without breaking the bank.

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Myth Busting: Why volunteers aren’t free

main.jpgHow many times have you heard this in your nonprofit workplace?

“Of course volunteers are free. We don’t pay them.”
“You’re overwhelmed? Just get a volunteer to help you.”
“Doesn’t spending money on volunteers defeat the purpose?”

The notion volunteers are free is a common misconception both in and outside the nonprofit world. While many of the costs associated with volunteers aren’t directly monetary, there are costs nonetheless.

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Recruiting and retaining volunteers like a pro

The following blog is by David Zeller

main.jpgCampaign season is ramping up once again, and with that, floods of emails asking for donations from the Presidential campaigns all the way down to local city and county elections, not to mention all of the amendment groups.

Little, though, is asked of the individual. In fact, many people are unable to give out of their pocket book, but would absolutely love to give their time, if only they were asked.

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Reality check: Volunteering your way to a job

Will Volunteer for WorkIf you’re a job seeker, chances are you’ve heard this piece of advice: “You should volunteer! It’s a great way to get a job!”

Help the world while also helping yourself get your next paying gig? It sounds pretty great to a do-gooding nonprofit professional. Unfortunately, it’s not as easy as many advice-givers make it out to be. Yes, volunteering can help lead you to employment opportunities, but it’s often a long and indirect process. The chances of finding a job through the sheer act of volunteering are slim.

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Our mission, vision and values guide all that we do at the Young Nonprofit Professionals Network of the Twin Cities (YNPN-TC).

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