Micro-volunteering – The Way of the Future?

Photograph of a seated man holding a blackboard

Smartphone apps such as ‘Volunteer Me’ and ‘Collaborate’ are helping volunteers donate their time in short, efficient bursts and ‘not for profit’ organisations can tap into the trend.

Micro-volunteering takes a simple idea – that people are more likely to volunteer their time in short convenient bite-sized chunks – and turns it into a new approach to community action. It offers volunteers a series of easy tasks that can be done anytime, anywhere, on your own terms.

Micro-volunteering could involve anything from signing a petition or retweeting a message to taking part in a flash Haka. The only requirements are that volunteers don’t need to go through an application process, the tasks may only take hours or even minutes to complete, and there’s no ongoing commitment.

The vast majority of micro-volunteering takes place online, but it doesn’t have to. Weeding a garden in a local community centre or going to visit a lonely neighbour for half an hour or so counts just as much.

People aged between 20-40yrs frequently cite the biggest barrier to volunteering as lack of time. Micro-volunteering tends to be done mostly by young people and one of the key advantages is flexibility. Micro-volunteering is quick and efficient, which can save charities and organisations time and money.

Volunteering Bay of Plenty provides an online Database of volunteer roles readily available in the Bay of Plenty.

For more information please contact Volunteering Bay of Plenty, 571 3714 or email bopcoordinator@volbop.org.nz

By Barbie Burridge, Regional Service Coordinator, Volunteering Bay of Plenty

I write for this magazine because I want people living in the Bay to know that there is a volunteer role available for them.