Valuing your volunteers

From Our Toolkit

It is good practice to recognise and reward the contribution of your volunteers. How you value your volunteers can take a range of forms, from saying thank you to a formal award. Volunteers who feel appreciated are more likely to stay at your organisations and say good things about you.

A valued volunteer can become a great ambassador for your organisation and can help to attract new volunteers.

Volunteer Scotland – Recognising and Valuing your Volunteers

Different ways to recognise your volunteers

Volunteer Scotland’s Recognising and Valuing your Volunteers has a wide-ranging list of suggestions for recognising the contribution of your volunteers that is useful as a starting point. It may take the form of organising a celebration event, a social occasion or ‘go-and-see’ visit to learn from good practice in other places.

You may be able to offer discounted entry or discounts in either your shop or cafe for your volunteers, or partner with other organisations to offer reciprocal rewards for your volunteers. An ambitious example of this are the museums in the North East, North West and Yorkshire and Humberside regions who have joined together to support the Northern Museums Volunteer Pass Scheme where volunteers can benefit from discounted or free entry to other scheme members as well as other benefits.

Volunteers’ Week (1-7 June) is another option you may want to think about.

Quality standards and awards

Investing in Volunteers is a UK quality standard that aims to improve the quality of the volunteering experience and ensure organisations acknowledge the contribution of their volunteers.


The Award in Volunteering Skills at SCQF levels 3, 4 and 5 provides formal recognition of volunteering activity.

Communication and consultation

Regular and clear communication is vital to retaining volunteers. Not only to keep them informed and up-to-date about your organisation but also to provide your volunteers with the opportunity to feed back to you. Free e-newsletter software like Mailchimp allow you to set up templates to make sending professional looking newsletters quick and easy.

Some organisations have a volunteer forum so that volunteers can feed their perspectives into wider structures.

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