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Record number at volunteering conference

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The conference attracted a wide cross section of people representing not-for-profits, local, state and federal government, corporate entities and more. This was the first time the conference has been held outside Victoria and organisers were delighted with the turnout.

Some of the key emerging issues and trends that were discussed at the conference include:

1. Social networking – linking with Gen Y and using technology to attract young people.

2. Acknowledgement of the professional status of the role of manager of volunteers.

3. Short term volunteering – attracting these volunteers requires designing projects for volunteers that have a definite beginning, middle and end. Short term volunteering projects are very attractive to time poor people who want to volunteer, but are unable to commit to an ongoing, long term involvement.

4. Corporate volunteering and other group volunteering such as family volunteering, student group volunteering (not work experience).

5. Training – recognising prior learning.

6. Grey nomads – these are people who have retired and spend long periods of time travelling around Australia and have great potential as a new volunteer workforce for rural and remote towns.

7. National standards for involving volunteers and key performance indicators – both of these tools generated interest with the concept of standards to organise and benchmark programs in line with the principles of best practice in volunteer management, and as a complement, the key performance indicators to measure the impact of a program, such as corporate volunteering, on the not-for-profit organisation.

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