The Center for
The ReasonsThat I Volunteer
A Checklist @
@ -- permission for use-with-acknowledgment
By Ivan Scheier
We've listed below some of the things people say when you ask them why they volunteer. There are no "right" or "wrong" reasons for volunteering, only the ones that happen to be right for you. Completing this checklist might help remind you of your reasons for volunteering and thereby help you get more out of the experience. It might also help the people in charge of the program understand volunteer motivation better and be more responsive to it (you and the other volunteers wouldn't have to sign your name.
Now please look at the reasons below and mark:
If this is a VERY IMPORTANT reason why you volunteer
If this is a SOMEWHAT IMPORTANT reason you volunteer
_____ If this is NOT A REASON why you volunteer; you're sure it's not
__?__question mark means you're not really sure whether or not this is a reason you volunteer. You'd like to think about it a little more.
Remember, all the reasons may be important to you, or unimportant.
_____Volunteering expresses my religious faith or my ethics, in action.
_____My volunteer work increases quality and intensity of services to client.
_____Makes life easier for staff (paid staff). They can do their job better.
_____I respect this organization a great deal, have much loyalty to it.
_____The program/organization helps me do what I'd like to do anyhow.
_____I volunteer here because a friend asked me and/or I like the people.
_____I volunteer here because a paid staff person asked me. I like the staff.
_____My volunteer work puts interesting variety in my life.
_____I learn a lot through my volunteer work.
_____Volunteering helps me explore possible careers and prepare for them.
_____I enjoy meeting interesting and nice people through my volunteer work.
_____I volunteer out of a sense of duty and obligation to church, community,
_____I enjoy the work itself. It's interesting, sometimes challenging.
_____I like the choice and flexibility in work conditions.
_____I like to keep busy, don't like having idle time on my hands.
_____I was ordered to do this community service work.
_____My organization expects its people to do community service work.
_____People these days appreciate and show respect for volunteers.
_____It's part of good citizenship to serve your community.
_____Actually, I get as much help from my volunteering as I give.
_____Volunteering adds to my sense of worth and self-respect.
_____I want to provide a good example to my family and/or friends.
_____I like to feel I'm making a difference in the way things are----having an impact.
_____Volunteering always was an important tradition in my family and among my friends.
_____Frankly, this is a very prestigious program/organization, an honor to be in it.
_____This organization is quite weak and badly needs my help.
_____I enjoy working with a strong, effective organization such as this is.
_____This organization, or one like it, helped me (or a loved one) in the past.
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For comments and editing suggestions please contact Mary Lou McNatt firstname.lastname@example.org