The dialogue continues on the 10 questions – thanks Lynn!
Lynne Dalton is the CEO of the Centre of Volunteering in New South Wales Australia
Lynne has over 25 years experience in the community sector. Most recently Lynne worked with the NSW Department of Family Services and Community Services on capacity building projects. Between 1983 and 1995 Lynne was the Director of the Community Action Network Ltd, a non-profit organisation providing community services in areas such as Children, Family Support, Volunteering, Youth Services, Disability Services, and Multi-Cultural Services. Lynne holds a degree in Social Science and was previously a Board member of The Centre for eight years.
Here are Lynnes responses to my "great 10 questions" on volunteerism.
1.In 20 words or less describe/define Volunteer Management
Volunteer Management is the overt acknowledgement of the intrinsic value of volunteers to an organisation.
2.What are the 3 main differences between Volunteer Management and Human Resource Management?
•Recognising and therefore compensating for the lack of rights of volunteers in the workplace.
•Understanding and responding to the different motivations of volunteers and paid staff
•The need for VMs to acknowledge Human Resource Development as vital aspect of managing volunteers effectively.
3.Where is the current leadership evident in Volunteer Management?
Actions of individuals appears only to classified as leadership if acknowledged by those with power and/or influence. The failure of “authorities” to value or understand the worth of the volunteer sector to the global economy and to global social capital results in few if any volunteers activists being considered “leaders” at a national/international level. Whilst those in the sector recognise leaders, very few others in the world show them the same respect.
4.Finish this sentence in less than 50 words… An association in volunteer management should…
……examine closely its purpose and motivation, establish robust objectives and then got for it.
5.There have been many debates on the definition of volunteering itself. How would you define volunteering?
Volunteering is Social Inclusion in practice.
6.If you weren’t doing this what other profession would you have been interested in?
Singing (but I’d probably starve to death!!) then politics.
7.Who do you believe has been the most inspiring volunteer in history?
Aung San Suu Kyi– she has volunteered to put her life on hold for her country.
8.Where do you think social media can take volunteerism and volunteer management?
I think Social Media can be seen as both a boon and a barrier to communication. We have to make sure that we don’t become too isolated from human contact. Remember a large percentage of effective human communication is through body language. Bit hard to see via the internet or I-phone!!
9.Does Government get volunteering? If not why not?
No. If they did they would invest in it more. There has been heaps of research showing its value (Productivity Commission Report, 2009) and a large number of research activities showing the health benefits to individuals. But Governments still see the sector as a conveniently cheap option for services delivery rather than another option for professional service delivery.
10.What would you like to achieve personally in the volunteerism world?
Having volunteers recognised through legislation as a valid sector of the workforce who have the right to be treated with respect and dignity.