A guest post by Mike Barros of Lumaverse
Nonprofits play an integral role in providing resources for COVID-19 relief in their communities. From streamlining appointment registration to managing volunteers through their CRM, there are countless ways charitable organizations are helping in the face of crisis.
Even further, positively communicating with your team and donor base speaks volumes about your appreciation for their efforts. That will positively impact your organization after normal life resumes.
Since the pandemic began in 2020, organizations have used their donor CRM data to contribute to COVID relief efforts in many ways. Specifically, optimized data and communications strategies can help streamline the following operations:
- Volunteer management
- Appointment & vaccine scheduling
- Expressing gratitude and raising morale
Regardless of your organization’s core mission, we’re all serving the greater good in the face of the current social, economic, and healthcare crisis. Read on to find out more about how you can help your community in the face of COVID-19.
Volunteer management is the process of finding, engaging, and retaining helpers for a cause. Whether you’re looking for a group to help expedite the COVID testing process or to collect supplies for those out of work, your volunteer management strategy is crucial to your impact on the community.
When looking for help, optimize your data to find out which of your supporters would rather (and can) give money and who would instead give time. For example, if you’re looking to put together a group of volunteers to gather supplies for your local food bank, you can use your data stored by your software to know who you can ask to help.
For example, your organization can use volunteer management software to keep your team organized and informed when searching for COVID-19 relief volunteers. Your volunteer management software can also help your organization:
- Build connections for relief efforts into the future
- Find the right people for your specific cause
- Deliver data based on your volunteer relationships
- Manage donations and giving histories
With these features in mind, you’ll have no problem finding and putting together a volunteer base that can serve whichever issue you’re working to solve.
Appointment & Vaccine Scheduling
Scheduling appointments has been a struggle for many organizations during the pandemic due to the overwhelming need for help. This includes helping those who are seeking vaccine and testing appointments. Too often, people eligible for a test or vaccine struggle to get a time slot and receive the help they need.
Efficient scheduling software can help you expedite the fight against COVID-19 in your community. Consider the following benefits you can provide for your supporters with your know-how and powerful appointment scheduling software:
- Easy-to-use calendar interface
- Automated email reminders
- Confirmation receipts
- Around-the-clock sign up opportunities
With these benefits and more, your organization can help those frustrated with signing up for COVID-19 related appointments and take the load off of those who are already dedicating their lives to providing medical support.
Talk to your local healthcare providers to find out more about how you can help schedule anything from volunteer shifts to appointments. According to Double the Donation’s guide to coronavirus resources for nonprofits, there are endless ways to get involved in this effort.
Expressing Gratitude and Raising Morale
Last but certainly not least, your organization should provide support for those who support you. Everyone is sacrificing their usual ways of life to help prevent the spread of disease and aid others during this time. On top of this, people have to isolate themselves in their homes and deal with the hardships of our current world. Therefore, showing gratitude is as crucial as ever because it:
- Encourages repeat giving. Because your supporters have already contributed to your cause in one way or another, they’re highly likely to give again. They’ve already seen how their efforts have positively impacted the community through your outreach and are familiar with your giving process.
- Increases volunteer retention. When you retain patrons as you continue to pursue your efforts, you’ll have a dependable support base, saving time and money. According to Lumaverse’s guide to volunteer appreciation, supporter retention should be around 40%, and working to increase your retention rate will help your organization secure long-term giving.
- Expedites future planning. As you retain your supporters, they’ll become your go-to’s for your future needs! No longer will your team have to worry about having enough people to run a fundraising event, so you’ll have people who regularly give time and money.
For example, the TY Thursday column of this blog helps explain how to best appreciate your volunteers in such challenging times. The key takeaway of saying thank you is recognizing that your donor is still giving time, resources, and money to others despite the hardships they may be facing. Some ways to show this can be through outreach, such as:
- Thank you notes
- Follow-up input surveys
- Branded merchandise
- Sponsor recognition
- Social media shout-outs
These are just a handful of ways to show gratitude for your generous donors and volunteers. When you strengthen your connections with them, you’ll have a reliable task force to help with relief efforts, especially during the COVID era.
Nonprofits play a considerable role in COVID-19 relief in their communities. Whether they help find volunteers for related tasks, expedite appointment registration, and retain helpers for future endeavors, their impact is immeasurable.
Remember, time, supplies, and financial donations are integral parts of keeping your community afloat during hardships. Be a resource of relief both internally and externally for your organization, and stay safe!
Mike Barros is the President and CEO of Lumaverse Technologies. Before joining the Lumaverse, Mike was the President of Education Brands at Community Brands, the CEO of Diamond Mind, and the Chief Revenue Officer at JackBe. He resides in the DC-Metro area.