An estimated 11 million professional people in the UK are given paid time off to volunteer, which constitutes around a billion pounds’ worth of support available for charities each year. Unfortunately, we’ve found the uptake of this time off to be surprisingly low, causing charities to miss out on potential help. Benefacto’s mission is to get professional people volunteering and prevent employee volunteering time going unused.
We work closely with over 60 charities to organise high-impact employee volunteering which is genuinely useful for charities. The charities we work with range from homeless concerns to employability workshops to community gardens and anything in-between. We also work with companies to raise awareness of our charity partners and give employees the opportunity to instantly book their volunteering through our web-based portal, benefacto.org.
Last year, Benefacto organised over 6,000 volunteering shifts for professionals. Explaining why professional people make great volunteers, as well as the personal benefits of volunteering, has helped encourage volunteers to sign up. Professional people have a particular skillset which they may take for granted, but is invaluable to charities and their service users. Effective communication, knowing what a good CV looks like or previous interview experience have the potential to genuinely change a service user’s life. We’ve found that explaining to professionals why these skills are so valuable empowers them and encourages them to help out.
While professionals have a lot to offer charities, it is also important to highlight that volunteers personally gain from the experience. Helping out at a charity can develop and hone professional skills such as interacting with customers, versatility when adapting to new environments and explaining things on a one-to-one basis.
Additionally, studies show that volunteering can improve your mental and physical wellbeing, including lowering levels of depression, loneliness and stress. It has even been shown to help you live longer! (read about more about that here).
Explaining the win-win situation of employee volunteering, where all parties gain from the experience, is a great way to encourage people to use their volunteering days.
If you want to find out more about how we get professional people volunteering, get in touch: firstname.lastname@example.org. Benefacto, 6-7 Great Newport Street, London, WC2H 7JB Tel: 02032 864 676