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In this issue...
August Hot Topic: The Yin and Yang of China's Olympic Volunteers

Announcing a New Book by Marlene Wilson

Hawaiian Conference Lowers Registration Fee

Susan's Tip of the Month: De-Mystifying the Concept of Social Entrepreneurship

Recognition Idea
Volunteer Book Launching with Community Celebration

Volunteer Nelson NZ has produced a book of volunteer stories and photos. The book is to be launched at a cafe, with a special guest (a NZ author). A Hip Hop Salsa group will perform and
New Zealand delicacies will be cooked and served by two local chefs - all generously volunteered to Volunteer Nelson, and a very special event for all volunteers in our region.

"It's a sign of mediocrity when you celebrate gratitude in moderation."  Goooo Volunteers!

- Submitted by Jude McNabb

Share Your Recognition Idea

Volunteerism Quote
If you don't believe one person can make a difference, you have never been in bed with a mosquito.
 - Anita Roddick, founder of The Body Shop

- Submitted by Pam Betz

Share Your Quote

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Energize Volunteer Management Update
August 2008
a1August Hot Topic: The Yin and Yang of China's Olympic Volunteers

1.7 million Chinese have gone through a rigorous application, screening, and training process to become Olympic volunteers, but much of the press coverage to date treats this not as quality volunteer management, but as suspect "government control."  Susan challenges readers to watch Olympics reporting carefully this month and report back on positives, negatives, and contradictions revealed.

Read this Month's Hot Topic
Remember you can listen to the Hot Topic as a podcast, too!

a2Announcing a New Book by Marlene Wilson

Visionary Leadership in Volunteer ProgramsEnergize, Inc. is proud to announce the upcoming release of Visionary Leadership in Volunteer Programs: Insight and Inspiration from the Speeches of Marlene Wilson. Marlene, one of the true pioneers of volunteer management, offers this collection of her most memorable speeches from the 1970s to the present.

Building on her classic book, The Effective Management of Volunteer Programs, in this brand new publication, Marlene moves from the hows to the whys of leading volunteer programs. She urges all who lead volunteers to move beyond thinking of themselves as managers to thinking of themselves as leaders - those who develop vision for volunteer programs and impart that vision throughout an organization.

Projected Publishing Date: September 1, 2008
Pre-order the book NOW and save! 
Receive 20% off the price if you order before September 1st.

a3 Hawaiian Conference Lowers Registration Fee

We announced this conference a few months ago, but it's worth noting again - plus there's some good news. The Volunteer Resource Center of Hawaii has taken the lead in convening a major conference in Honolulu on September 16-19, 2008: the first Asia Pacific Volunteer Leadership Conference.   As of 18 July, in response to the economic concerns of many, the conference fee has been REDUCED to only $200 - read the press release for details.

Co-sponsored by organizations committed to the common theme of international volunteer management, the conference has four "Streams":  
  • international volunteer management
  • opportunities for the aging
  • disaster readiness and recovery
  • pathways to peace and service

Speakers have been invited from almost a dozen countries, including the US, Japan, Australia, and New Zealand. Attendees may choose to remain in one Stream for the workshops or may sample workshops from different Streams. In addition, everyone will take part in unique Reflection Pool sessions. There will also be a day of site visits to multicultural Hawaiian volunteer programs.

This promises to be an exciting and visionary event. Hawai`i is the ideal location for bringing together people from the Pacific Rim who share a common focus in encouraging and strengthening volunteer engagement.  

If you are located anywhere around the Pacific Rim (including the west coast of the USA), consider attending this special conference. Check out the airfares before concluding it's too expensive! There are some good deals out there!
For more information and registration, go to: http://vrchawaii.org/APVLConference/.

a4Susan's Tip of the Month: 
De-mystifying the Concept of Social Entrepreneurship

Words, as we all know, can clarify or complicate. If you've been confused about the way phrases such as "social enterprise" or "social entrepreneurship" are being used, here's a quick primer on terminology.

Corporate Social Responsibility (which has been in use for a long time), is applied when a business considers its "bottom line" to be more than financial profit and demonstrates tangible concern for the environment, good working conditions for its employees, humane treatment of animals, and/or other legal and ethical ways to be a "good corporate citizen."  Employee volunteer programs fall into this category, as does financial philanthropy.

Social Enterprise and Social Entrepreneurship are newer terms used to describe several different things:
  1. A company that is for-profit, but directs its business profits towards meeting social needs. Can include:
    • Giving all or a percentage of profits to charity.
    • Hiring or training people in need to be its labor force.
    • Locating in places selected to stimulate economic development.
    • Fair trade practices, without exploiting underdeveloped artisans or tradespeople.
    • Sometimes recruit volunteers to help staff retail shops to increase ultimate revenues from sales that can then be directed to charitable work.
  2. A not-for-profit organization that runs a business enterprise in order to fund its work (cash income) or meet its mission (e.g., retraining the unemployed).
  3. A business or a nonprofit founded specifically to address a social need, in an effort to solve a community problem or demonstrate alternate ways of offering services - almost always employing the ethical principles of good corporate social responsibility. Examples:
    • Renewable energy alternatives.
    • Urban car- or bicycle-share projects.
    • Recycling of used computers to give to the poor.
Which brings us to the "entrepreneurship model" of volunteering.  First, this includes anyone who founds or runs any of the above types of enterprises.  Such "social entrepreneurs" are very often volunteers - at least in the beginning.  There's nothing new about this, since all social innovation begins with activists willing to work hard to establish something they believe in.  But now it has a name.

The second - and perhaps more interesting - use of the term social entrepreneur refers to volunteers who want to innovate or experiment with new ways of addressing needs.  Specifically, these people are looking for ways
  • To be creative in approaching community or client needs - not to "fill a slot" of a job-like volunteer position description.
  • To innovate - not to perpetuate traditional, possibly failed, ways of giving services.
  • To be able to apply their skills, talents, and time to changing/improving the world, not just "helping" an organization.
While this approach to volunteer work design has recently been extolled as the best way to recruit both Baby Boomers and Millennials/Generation Y (who have quite a bit in common despite the age gap), it really is a great way to get out of the trap of considering volunteers as staff "assistants."  It presupposes that someone from the "outside" might bring a fresh perspective to an organization's challenges and that volunteers who participate in creating the projects they tackle will develop longer and deeper engagement with the cause.

About Us
Energize empowers and inspires leaders of volunteers worldwide.  Our specialty is creating and selecting the most relevant, innovative resources in volunteer management.  We're advocates for the power of volunteers and for the recognition of the leaders who unleash it.

Energize, Inc.
5450 Wissahickon Ave. C-13
Philadelphia PA 19144
Phone: 215-438-8342
Fax: 215-438-0434
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