Volunteer day organisation

When I worked in the US, our company used to set aside one day where the entire company of 4,000 people went and volunteered in the community.  Usually painting school classrooms, but on one occasion, we built an entire school library.  It saved money for the schools and local government not to have to pay for this work and it ensured the work could be completed in a timely manner - the caretaker can only do so much.  Perhaps the council could organise this, so that they don't have to pay for any basic maintenance of public buildings going forward.

There were longer-term volunteers who would be onsite organising the people who were there just for the day.  The ratio used to be about 10:1 - 10 volunteers from the business to one organiser (who was also a volunteer, but a volunteer who did this organisation role regularly).  The head teacher just ensured the children were elsewhere in the building and popped in to admire our great work at the end of the day!  

Why the contribution is important

Potentially saves money for the council.

Creates opportunities for business to participate in their local community.

Rewarding for employees - we used to look forward to this day out, it was a fun team-building event.

by user419622 on November 22, 2013 at 09:50AM

Current Rating

Average rating: 4.1
Based on: 7 votes


  • Posted by user419622 November 22, 2013 at 11:54

    A website could match opportunities with teams of volunteers who are only available one day or half day. Perhaps the open source community could put this together on a hack day for the cost of pizza and beer
  • Posted by user734334 November 22, 2013 at 18:50

    There are already loads of volunteer agencies in bristol that you could sign up with without losing your business a days work. Sounds like a good idea but not sure how many businesses you could get to join this scheme.
  • Posted by user658034 November 23, 2013 at 16:12

    Great idea - why don't we have a Bristol community day
  • Posted by user419622 November 26, 2013 at 19:55

    Thanks everyone, helpful comments. yhin, businesses could start small by sending their executives and managers for one day a year. I've seen that work in the US as well. It's often good for the execs to get their hands dirty and front-line employees enjoy watching their bosses up to their elbows in paint. I haven't seen any sites which allow a business to volunteer their staff or some of their staff for just one day a year - most of the volunteering on Voscur for example seems to require an ongoing commitment. If I've missed something though, please feel free to mention it.
  • Posted by user412750 January 06, 2014 at 01:05

    I believe some businesses in Bristol already do allow amployees to do a day's work a year for a charity of their choice eg Bank of Ireland does. Certainly, more businesses should do this! There'd also need to be a website for charities to indicate what projects they would like to have done, so individuals or teams of people could sign up. It would probably be best for it not to be restricted to a single community day, as different projects would need doing at different times of year.
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