I am often very humbled by the number and range of people willing to donate their time and expertise to charities. One feature of our new website is that for the first time the volunteers offering their time, expertise and skills are listed and can be easily seen. Volunteering opportunities are often listed but now you can see the huge amount of skills on offer from volunteers, and they really do vary: digital skills, financial expertise, copywriting, market research, business advice and strategic planning. And this is to name just a few.
I spoke to one of the first volunteers to register, Andy Cummins. Andy is Head of Technical Production at digital agency Cogapp and wants to share his expertise as a trustee of a charity. I spoke to him about why he wants to volunteer and what he has to offer:
Why did you sign up?
“After many years of working in the digital sector I have built up skills I feel I could definitely give to other people. In my role at Cogapp, I have worked with many charities specifically working on their digital requirements so I understand the amount of resources they have available. I feel I could bring digital and website skills and knowledge that could be of benefit.”
What sort of skills do you have to offer a charity?
“My background is very technical so I have lots of online expertise. I originally started as a computer programmer and have moved into web development and managing digital large-scale projects. I now lead a team here at Cogapp so I have all the experience that being a senior manager brings: career development, recruiting, managing high-level strategic projects, tendering and pitching for work, embedding organisational change, positioning and marketing, and facilitating workshops.”
“I have many non-profit clients in the arts and cultural sector; for example I have recently been working with Southbank Centre and for some of the largest museums and galleries in the world such as The Metropolitan Museum of Art and MoMA in New York and The Tate and the National Portrait Gallery in London.”
What sort of voluntary position are you looking for?
“I would like to find a trustee position where I can share my digital and web expertise and help direct how an organisation runs. I like to make a difference so an organisation with ambition is where I feel I would offer most benefit. I work in a busy, full time job and have a young family but I want to put my skills to good use and a trustee position would suit my lifestyle.”
“I am looking to get involved with a progressive organisation preferably in the cultural space in Brighton or London but I am not restricted and would be open to explore other organisations. I am also happy to wait until the right option comes along so I can make the most of my expertise.”
Andy is just an example of one of the many talented individuals in the Reach community who want to get involved with a charity. If you are a charity looking for skilled volunteers or trustees, sign up and speak to people like Andy about joining your organisation.
You can search and approach people who fit the skills you need. Likewise, if you are a volunteer you can directly contact the organisations with the positions that most appeal to you.
And don’t feel shy about getting in contact! This could mean approaching a charity that you really like the sound of, or contacting a volunteer with the ideal skills for your opportunity. This new function means you can communicate, collaborate and explore whether something is the right fit for both parties so make the most of it! You can find more advice on how to use the site on our website.
Remember to get in contact if you have any feedback about the site; we want to make this as useful a resource for the voluntary sector as possible. We look forward to working with you!