Dec 7th, 2022
Who Are the Volunteers on Catchafire?
Here's what sets volunteers on Catchafire apart.
Catchafire's online volunteer community is made up of professionals from all over the globe who have a wide range of professional skills and expertise. Our virtual volunteers are passionate about giving back and use their skills to make a difference for causes they care about.
Catchafire connects virtual volunteers with nonprofits, providing them with hundreds of volunteer opportunities to give back from the comfort of their own homes. Virtual volunteers can build their resume and portfolio, professional network, and confidence by volunteering their skills to support local nonprofits and communities.
Thanks to the support of virtual volunteers, nonprofits receive the capacity support they need to maintain and expand their programs and operations. Many nonprofits are under-resourced and overwhelmed by the growing demand for their services, and left without a means to increase their capacity or budget. Virtual volunteers fill this critical capacity gap, and skilled volunteer professionals on Catchafire provide the high-quality support nonprofits need. For many, this leads to repeat volunteers and ongoing engagement, allowing nonprofits to build a network of dedicated and committed virtual volunteers who will help advance their mission.
How Does Virtual Volunteering Work?
We make virtual volunteering simple so that volunteers can easily provide their skills and expertise to nonprofits in need. Our platform is user-friendly and easy to navigate, ensuring that volunteers and nonprofits can get matched quickly. Volunteers are able to tailor their experience based on their availability and skill set. Volunteers are able to choose from 24 different cause areas and 35 skill sets, customizing the volunteer opportunities they would like to submit an application for. Virtual volunteers provide project support in key areas such as:
- Executive leadership
- Finance and operations
- Human resources
- Marketing and communications
- Professional development
- Program management
There's something for everyone when it comes to volunteering and volunteer opportunities. There are hundreds of volunteer opportunities on the platform. Nonprofits post short-term and long-term projects that volunteers can choose from. Volunteers with limited schedules or interest in high-level strategy work can apply for one-hour consultation calls. These calls provide an immediate contribution towards a specific organizational challenge or question. Our full-length projects range anywhere from 5 to 50 hours on a variety of departmental needs like graphic design, data analysis, finance, IT, social media, fundraising, and more.
Our project templates ensure that both nonprofits and volunteers are aligned on expectations; the templates outline specific skills requirements and requested deliverables. They also provide more information on the nonprofit so that volunteers are clear on what they're signing up for and how their work will make a tangible, direct impact on the nonprofit's community.
Each time a volunteer helps a nonprofit, we create an impact story page that volunteers can easily share and showcase to their professional network.
Volunteering has a wide range of benefits, to the individual and to the community at large. Here are examples of ten virtual volunteer opportunities and ways that volunteering can contribute to nonprofits and build up their capacity.
What Sets Volunteers on Catchafire Apart?
Volunteers on Catchafire are an essential resource the nonprofit sector depends on. Catchafire’s 68,000 volunteers have collectively saved nonprofits over $200 million, donating over 1 million hours of pro bono work to support nonprofits they care about. They have helped them create marketing strategies, train employees, set up their CRM systems, design new websites, and find board prospects – they have provided transformational capacity-building support and filled in the gaps where nonprofit budgets are lacking. But most importantly, volunteers on Catchafire have created a community that nonprofits can lean on.
Catchafire attracts the highest quality volunteer professionals from all over the world; they come from all 50 U.S. states and over 190 countries! By bringing equitable access to pro bono talent regardless of zip code, Catchafire enables nonprofits everywhere to thrive.
“Corina was a delight to work with. She finished the project in a super fast time frame. We are extremely thankful for her wonderful work and would love to work with her again in the near future.”
-Eva S. Director, Co-founder of Artlab21 Foundation
"Our organization is better because of the help and work volunteers on Catchafire provided. We have now implemented an IT system which would not have been done for several years...It's such a value add to our nonprofit's activities. I can't express how much help it has provided us from marketing to fundraising to IT system implementation."
-Thanh T., Executive Director at Accelerate4Kids Foundation
"Had a great conversation with Ashwin. He provided me with a wealth of information and a number of great suggestions. I feel better prepared to move this project forward and greatly appreciate the wealth of expertise I’ve been provided in each of my Catchafire calls. Thank you so very much!!”
-Julie H., Associate Director
With an average of 16 years of workforce experience, our volunteers are experienced professionals. In fact, 2/3 of them have professional experience in the nonprofit sector specifically, giving them firsthand insight into the challenges that many nonprofits face. Many are experts in their field, with 42% holding an advanced degree – and they are lending that expertise to nonprofits who can benefit from it.
“I believe passionately in the importance of giving to the community. Where we have the skills and can give our time – if somebody can benefit from that, well, why not?”
-Corinne T., Volunteer
"It has been a huge blessing to be a part of Catchafire. I’ve always felt like I wasn't making an impact. I’ve always wondered how could I make an impact, what is it that I could do? Catchafire gives me a way to do that. And not in a way where it’s so taxing. I'm still able to run my company, be profitable, and give back to organizations that I probably never would have heard of. Organizations that need to be spotlighted because they do great work. There are a lot of smaller grassroots NPOs that need our help more so than one that can afford to hire a copywriter or someone to design their website. I love what you have created and how it helps us as professionals. People look at what I've done on Catchafire, and are like ‘Wow, I did that’. I don't want a nonprofit to miss out on what they deserve just because they can't afford to hire me.”
-Lakisha M., Volunteer
Whether it’s designing a new logo or creating a membership strategy, our volunteers get the job done. Take, for example, Chetna, a Lead Account Specialist at American Express and Google Ads subject matter expert. Chetna uses their expertise to help nonprofits on Catchafire secure and work with $10,000 Google Ads grants. With each project, Chetna equips an organization with the tools and knowledge they need to manage their ads on their own, grow their reach, and gather data on who their audience is and how to engage them, which allows them to build even more successful campaigns down the road.
“If you have a chance to work with Chetna on a project, expect the best.”
-Steve J., Founder of National CleanUp Day
Volunteers on Catchafire are more than just skilled volunteers.
Volunteers on Catchafire are, first and foremost, people who care. They are people who choose to dedicate hours of their time and energy to do the less glamorous, but critically needed work that truly makes a difference to nonprofit missions.
The money that they save nonprofits is just the tip of the iceberg. What you don’t see is the burden that’s lifted when a volunteer completes a project that has been on an organization’s backburner for ages, and the listening ears lent to grassroots leaders who are doing what we know to be emotionally taxing work on the ground.
“To be able to connect with people and just to know that there’s a community out there that I can reach out to if I need an extra push of motivation or support – it makes me feel like I’m not alone in doing this work.”
-Precious M., Founder of the SHIELD Mentor Program
"We are what we are because of Catchafire, because if I'm the strength of five people, with Catchafire I would say it’s like working with 200 people at one time.”
-Payal S., Founding Executive Director of Saahas for Cause
While their qualifications are impressive, the true quality of volunteers on Catchafire is immeasurable. Their value far surpasses the dollars they save nonprofits, their work experience, or level of education. You cannot measure the passion they bring to their work or the depth of the relationships they build with nonprofits, but you can see the impact they make on the lives they touch.
“My conversations with National Clean Up Day could last for hours…I’m here for them any day. “
-Chetna B., Volunteer
Our 2022 Volunteer Survey
Catchafire makes it easy for talented professionals to give their skills to mission-driven organizations in need. Every year, we conduct a volunteer survey assessing their experience with virtual volunteering and their role in supporting the social good space. Here are our key findings for 2022.
Virtual volunteers on Catchafire are highly skilled, with decades of experience in the nonprofit sector and across a variety of industries, ready to lend their expertise. They have advanced degrees, and a majority are mid-level and senior-level employees who provide critical knowledge and guidance to nonprofits looking for insight into their organizational needs. With 67% of volunteers having previous experience with nonprofits, and 76% of volunteers as past or current nonprofit Board and staff members, volunteers on Catchafire are well-versed in the daily challenges nonprofits face, and are well equipped to provide solutions.
We also continue to grow our BIPOC volunteer base, with the goal of having our virtual volunteers better reflect the diversity of the communities in which we partner.
Our average nonprofit rating for volunteers on Catchafire is a 9.2/10, demonstrating the high quality of their work. Nearly half of volunteers use Catchafire as their sole volunteer platform. Volunteers who join Catchafire are driven by the idea of giving back to communities, while simultaneously building their resumes and professional skills. Survey respondents noted a desire to do good alongside the ability to support specific causes and strengthen their skill set as their primary motivations for volunteering.
“Catchafire opens the door for me to be able to meaningfully support the vital work of program-focused nonprofits serving vulnerable populations. I am grateful for the opportunity to meet extraordinary people, learn about their service to others, and help where I can with no geographic limitations.”
-Volunteer on Catchafire
Long-lasting, impactful relationships start on Catchafire. Through skills-based volunteering, our nonprofit partners and volunteers are cultivating genuine relationships and long-term impact for local communities. This creates long-lasting community care, with a positive impact on generations to come.
Many volunteers go on to become donors, repeat volunteers, advisors, or join the Board of Directors, becoming a lifelong advocate for the organization's mission and cause.
"Our volunteer from Catchafire last year is actually coming to our board retreat on Saturday. That's how involved some people became."
-Ty W., Co-Founder at Artportunity Knocks
“Our experience using Catchafire has undoubtedly been positive - we have come across various enthusiastic and professional volunteers who care about our work and have supported it. Some have been repeat volunteers and we've been able to rely on them to deliver projects at shorter notice, which has been very valuable. Our communications assets, graphic design and financial systems have been strengthened by our partnership with Catchafire.”
-Clementine, Communications and Development Manager at Safari Doctors
Evette, an American Express employee with over 20 years of leadership experience, became a repeat volunteer for Innerconnected, an organization focused on providing youth with access to vital wellness tools. After several projects with Innerconnected, Evette went on to become their Board President, deepening her commitment and relationship to the nonprofit and their community.
"Evette is a talented Leadership Coach. Her keen listening abilities allow her to assess areas of challenge that often lie layers beneath the surface, unearthing the true core issue. She readily shares resources and relevant examples from her own career that encourage me to pause and, often, readjust my course of action. Evette serves as an excellent sounding board to me as a first time Executive Director and has contributed vastly to my confidence as an evolving leader. I am grateful to Evette for her contributions to my personal and professional development."
-Megan S., Executive Director
"I love Innerconnected, they are helping society in great ways: yoga, meditation, play, and wellness. The executive team is pouring their knowledge, souls, and passions into building great programming and services. I am proud to be of assistance."
-Evette M., Volunteer
These are just a few examples of the high caliber of volunteers on Catchafire, and the long-term sustainable impact they have on nonprofits and their communities.
We recently hosted a panel discussion with Evette and two other volunteers on Catchafire who have collectively contributed over $600,000 in pro bono value and supported communities with their professional expertise. They were also joined by Payal Sawhney, Founder, President and Executive Director for Saahas for Cause, a nonprofit that has saved over $160,000 by working with skilled volunteers on Catchafire. Watch the discussion to learn more about their experiences making a community impact through virtual volunteering on Catchafire.
Support Nonprofits Through Catchafire
By sponsoring their access to Catchafire, you can connect nonprofits with dedicated, high-quality volunteers with the skills, expertise, and passion that nonprofits need to more effectively serve their communities. If you’re a grantmaker and would like to learn more about equipping nonprofits in your community with responsive, high-quality operational support, let’s connect. Email us here.
Interested in CSR opportunities? Learn more about how we work with companies and request a demo.
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