Youth organisations in Europe depend on the volunteer work of their members and supporters. However, rarely any of our organisations are approaching volunteers and their work systematically. This has caused burn-outs of many volunteers, dissatisfaction of some volunteers and their disbelief in the values of the volunteerism. The main reasons for this dissatisfaction lie in the fact that almost none of the organisations that have engaged volunteers in their activities have had properly developed volunteer programs with a quality volunteer management process, planned and implemented by a volunteer manager and the personnel. The presumption that the volunteers will always be around and that they will be always motivated by the same motives to volunteer, is wrong. In order for the volunteers to endure in a volunteer position or in an organisation, they have to feel happy with their work, to feel motivated for it, and to feel appreciated, educated and supervised in their work.
All volunteers should get support from their organisation when it comes to non-formal learning and possibilities for personal growth. Even though majority of our youth organisations do not have paid staff responsible only for volunteer management, our board members and coordinators should take more active role and improve the volunteer management systems in our organisations as a key element of the organisational growth.
Trainer for Association Realization, Croatia