And no, we don’t mean it like it sounds. Millennials get a bad rap from many angles. They are widely regarded as being self-centered (Mental Floss). But did you also know they are one of the most charitable generations, with 84% of them making donations (Eternity Marketing).
Do Millennials Volunteer?
The statistics say yes. According to the Millennial Impact Report, 70% of them spend at least an hour volunteering per year. That’s actually quite astonishing, since the nationwide rate in 2018 was just 30.3%.
So when we ask how to get more millennials volunteering, we don’t mean for it to sound like they don’t volunteer. Rather, how do you tap into this base of volunteers? Maybe your group is comprised of an older crowd, and in need of suggestions for attracting a younger group. In either case, there are an estimated 71 million millennials (Wikipedia). This is a huge opportunity for volunteer-run organizations.
Get Millennials to Choose Your Group for Volunteering
- Match the Cause. One of the reasons the rate of charity and volunteerism for millennials is so high is because there are certain issues they are passionate about. Think environmental and social issues. This generation wants to affect change for what they believe in. So if your organization doesn’t match this desire, this either might not be a good fit for you or you may have to change your approach.
- Have a Digital Presence. Millennials are digital natives who have been using technology all their lives. This goes beyond a website. If you’re hosting an event, it had better be on services like Facebook and Eventbrite. If your hours have changed, be sure to update Yelp and Google Business. Stay active on social media and keep up your profiles around the web.
- Use Referrals. Although millennials are known as “free agents”, meaning they will volunteer for a cause they believe in even if it’s not with an official organization, they also like to be with their friends. If you get one millennial, encourage them to invite others.
What About Groups Without a Grandiose Cause
If you’re on the board of your HOA or a Parent Group and you’re trying to get more millennials volunteering, the same advice applies. Even though you may not have a world-saving mission like healing the environment, your mission still helps make the world a better place. Ensure you are communicating your cause and mission with them. If they buy it, they are likely to help. Meet them where they are (in the digital world), and help their friends to encourage them.
See Beyond the Millennial Reputation
If you’re reading this, you are likely not a millennial and may have trouble understanding them. Try to see beyond the stereotypes and instead view the humanity in this generation. Millennials are humans just like you, and if they like your cause, they’ll be willing to help. That said, here are some other articles about volunteerism that may just apply to this generation:
- Prevent Volunteer Burnout
- Printable Volunteer Thank You Cards
- Get More PTA Volunteers
- How to Engage Parent Volunteers
- Tips for Managing Volunteers
- Getting Volunteers in a Digital Age
- Managing Your Group When Help is Short