Volunteering and Fundraising are not the same — here’s why.

Are you new to the field of volunteering and the development sector?

Have you been using the terms ‘volunteering’ and ‘fundraising’ interchangeably?

Let’s demystify these concepts for you!

Volunteering:

Volunteering is an act of contributing your time and skill towards a social cause. It is an unpaid act wherein an individual channels their passion and interest towards an identified social cause to create change.

Ideally, an individual who is interested in volunteering would sign up for volunteering opportunities available at NGOs. An NGO is a non-governmental organization whose programs and activities are modeled to bring about a social change in society.

NGOs work in various social causes such as education, health, skill training, the welfare of senior citizens, women empowerment, youth development, poverty alleviation, animal welfare, etc. Depending on the area of interest and skills, one can select a social cause to volunteer towards.

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Here are some examples of volunteering activities that can be done for NGOs:

  1. Designing collaterals for social media campaigns.
  2. Teaching spoken English to underprivileged children.
  3. Teaching computer literacy skills to young adults.
  4. Creating and maintaining a website for an NGO.
  5. Spending time with senior citizens at an elderly care home.
  6. Spending time with children at an orphanage.

Given the pandemic, the majority of volunteering opportunities are now happening through virtual platforms. For instance, volunteers may take online classes for underprivileged children using communication platforms such as Whatsapp or Zoom.

You can find current volunteering opportunities with ConnectFor here:

https://www.connectfor.org/virtualvolunteering/

Fundraising:

Fund-raising is the act of raising funds to ensure the smooth functioning of an NGO. Each NGO has their respective budgets to manage their welfare programs, administrative expenses, and other miscellaneous costs.

Depending on the scale of operations and size of the programs, different NGOs would have unique requirements for funds. Usually, there is a team dedicated to perform this function. Often, for small organizations, the founders themselves are responsible for raising funds.

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Corporates also partner with NGOs as part of their corporate social responsibility programs. Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) are planned acts by the companies to contribute towards social good and give back to society.

The companies have dedicated CSR professionals who engage in planning for corporate volunteering programs with their NGO partner/s. These volunteering programs aim to motivate and involve the company employees to donate their time and efforts for social good. The CSR Team may also fund some of their partner NGO projects depending on the company’s CSR budget.

We, at ConnectFor partner with corporate companies, to facilitate their corporate employee volunteering programs. You may find more information about our corporate volunteering program here: https://www.connectfor.org/corporate-volunteering/

Volunteer Fundraising:

NGOs do take the support of volunteers to raise funds. Most volunteers tap into their network to promote social causes and encourage people in their social circles to contribute funds.

Volunteers could take part in fundraising events organized by NGOs such as marathons, crowd-funding campaigns, charity public performances (now happening virtually). The proceeds generated from these events are donated to fund welfare programs managed by NGOs.

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Companies that have partnered with NGOs as part of their CSR program may also raise funds by encouraging their employees to donate.

So, what now?

Now that we are clear with the concept of volunteering and fundraising, isn’t it time to take some action? Do go through the virtual opportunities that are available on our website and sign up based on your interests and skillsets!

To know more, you can also connect with our ConnectFor team: contact@connectfor.org

Happy Virtual Volunteering!

Blog by Padmapriya N, Volunteer, ConnectFor.

Written by

An online volunteering platform that seeks to promote a culture of volunteering and maximize the human potential within the social sector.

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