VOLUNTEER IMPACT ASSESSMENT

Volunteer Impact AssessmentMeasuring the social impact from volunteering activities is vital. Volunteer involving organisations ability to make a ‘value added’, ‘positive impact’ for a community, on a shoe string, is how the Community Sector sets itself apart. This need to evidence worth is increasingly important as year on year public expenditure cuts are forecast.

Many volunteer involving organisations or volunteer led groups may not have the resources or time to carry out evaluation work which can detract from service delivery or front line work. However, the Volunteering Impact Assessment Toolkit is an inexpensive, tried and tested way for organisations of all sizes to evidence impact.

This toolkit enables organisations to assess the impact of volunteering on key stakeholders – the volunteers, the organisation, the beneficiaries, and the broader community. Organisations will be able to use it to assess a wide range of impacts, from the skills development of volunteers to the economic value of involving volunteers.

The toolkit provides information on the:

  • Range of impacts that can be measured using the toolkit;
  • The range of stakeholders that can be included;
  • The range of adaptable research tools available;
  • Guidelines on research design, data collection and analysis;
  • and Provides information on how to access further support for research design, data collection and analysis.

The information gathered from the toolkit can:

  • Give your application the edge when looking for funding;
  • Is useful for informing policy and practice development;
  • Is used to motivate existing volunteers and staff;
  • Attract new volunteers and can Showcase the benefits of volunteering to the public.

The toolkit and associated training course has been successfully used by a number of organisations in Ireland, including Depaul Ireland, The Solas Project Engineers Ireland, Third Age Ireland and Event Volunteers.  The Volunteering Impact Assessment Toolkit is available for sale from Volunteer Ireland.

A full day training course is also available as part of Volunteer Ireland’s Volunteer Management Training Calendar.  Please check our Training and Consultancy pages for information for forthcoming courses.  If you wish to have this course delivered directly to your organisation please contact Stuart Garland, Training and Programmes Manager, email stuart@volunteer.ie or telephone (01) 636 9446.

The Toolkit developed by Volunteering England (now NCVO) and The Institute for Volunteering Research (IVR) and promoted in Republic of Ireland under licence from Volunteer Now (Northern Ireland).

The Volunteer Investment to Value Audit (VIVA)

The VIVA is one specific tool within the toolkit which can be used to measure the economic impact of volunteering. It uses a simple equation to calculate the difference between the monetary investment into a volunteering programme and the value of the work carried out by volunteers. Volunteer Now have developed a simple spreadsheet which will help people to calculate a VIVA ratio based on them entering some figures i.e. the final ratio figure will show what return on investment an organisation gains from involving volunteers.  You can get a free copy by contacting Stuart Garland, Training and Programmes Manager, email stuart@volunteer.ie or telephone (01) 636 9446.