Highlight the History of Volunteering
volunteers know that you appreciate them. But do they know that their efforts
are making history
? As Susan Ellis
and Katherine Campbell write in By the
People: A History of Americans as Volunteers
, "...the cumulative effect of
many such voluntary actions, occurring as they do in every part of the country
and in every decade, makes it apparent that our history has been shaped by
Showing the volunteers you lead how their efforts fit into the
larger picture of citizen involvement is a unique
and meaningful way to recognize their work - perfect for the National
Volunteer Week celebrations coming up in the US and Canada in April.
And while By the People
is United States-focused, many of the campaigns and movements it discusses have
clear counterparts in other countries. A
few can be found in the History section
of our online library. If you know of any other resources on volunteering
history, please let us know so we can post that information for everyone!
New Edition of From the
Top Down is coming!
third and fully revised edition of From
the Top Down: The Executive Role in Successful Volunteer Involvement has
just been sent to the printer! We are ecstatic to have reached this milestone
and can't wait to see the revised book in our hands.
be able to the see the book for yourselves in March, so keep an eye out for the
March Book Buzz when we will announce its availability.
Jackson of Volunteering England says, "I read this book in the early days of my
career in volunteering
and it remains with me to this day one of the 'must read' books for anyone
leading and managing volunteers and volunteer programmes."
|Receive the |
|Learn about the History of Volunteering
|By the People: A History of Americans as Volunteers
Revised and updated for the new century, this book remains the only presentation of the full scope and depth of volunteer activity throughout
three centuries of American history. Discover the incredible impact volunteers
have had on American society in a wide array of fields, and learn about the
volunteer tradition of every segment of our population, regardless of age,
gender, race, religion, or ethnicity.
Voices from the Past articles from e-Volunteerism
regular feature in e-Volunteerism: The
Online Journal of the Volunteer Community explores volunteerism's past
through interviews, re-publication of long out-of-print materials, and historical
overviews of volunteers' roles, always attempting to be international. Non-subcribers to the journal can purchase
single articles for only $3. Here's just a sampling of the complete list:
| Book Excerpt
Volunteers Shape American History
Excerpt from By The People: A History of Americans as Volunteers by Susan J. Ellis and Katherine H. Campbell, © 2005, Energize, Inc.
individuals worthy of historical note? Traditionally, it has been their political
power; their literary, artistic, or scientific genius; their willingness to
take unusual risks (which are usually only remembered if successful); or their
creation of large and lasting enterprises. Fame comes from impact.
position is that the individual and combined volunteer actions of thousands of
unnamed citizens have had an impact on American society. These actions were of
citizens who became involved, not because of coercion or profit, but because
they recognized a need and were willing to take responsibility for meeting that
need. But because they assumed this responsibility in addition to their
everyday duties, and because they did not seek monetary reward, the volunteers
themselves may have underestimated the impact of their work. Traditional
historians, too, have overlooked the magnitude and diversity of volunteer
activities. However, the cumulative effect of many such voluntary actions,
occurring as they do in every part of the country and in every decade, makes it
apparent that our history has been shaped by everyone...
everyone, at one time or another, is a volunteer. Volunteering is so pervasive
in the United States that it
can be observed daily in almost every aspect of life. The problem is that
volunteering, because it is so pervasive, often goes unrecognized. For
is crucial to a functioning democracy because it mobilizes enormous energy. The
more citizens involve themselves as volunteers in all areas, the closer they
come to making the ideals of democracy real. Eleanor Roosevelt expressed this
concept by identifying two sacrifices necessary to maintain a democracy: first,
to give up selfishness, and second, "to give to our government an interested
and intelligent participation." Volunteerism is both an expression of
patriotism in a pure sense and the means by which a democratic society remains "by the people."
the parent-teacher organizations in schools?
caroling in hospitals?
on school boards?
to preserve historic landmarks?
appears on fundraising telethons?
out political campaign leaflets?
ham radios to relay calls for help?
4-H Clubs? Scout troops? Youth sports teams?
supports community orchestras?
advocates for less violence on television?
granted for organizations to reprint this excerpt. Reprints must provide full
acknowledgment of the source, as cited here:
Excerpt from By the People: A History of Americans as Volunteers by Susan J. Ellis and Katherine H. Campbell, © 2005, Energize, Inc. Available in the Energize Online Bookstore at http://www.energizeinc.com/store/1-215-E-1
|Energize, Inc. |
5450 Wissahickon Ave., C-13
Philadelphia, PA 19144
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.