Wednesday, June 29, 2011

How to be an unforgettable volunteer

Are you considering volunteer work? Follow this advice, and I guarantee no one at the Nonprofit Agency will EVER forget you.

1. Do not expect to follow a volunteer schedule. The Nonprofit Agency's work flow certainly won't be disrupted by your unannounced arrival or early departure.

2. Your desire to volunteer trumps a Master's Degree.  Unskilled volunteers and highly educated professionals do the same work. On your first day of volunteering, expect to take on the duties of the Museum Curator or the Head Administrator (but only the fun duties, not the ones you don't feel like doing). Anything else would be beneath you.

3. Clothing is optional. It is a good idea to take down your pants in the middle of the Children's Library to show off the scars from your botched tummy tuck. It's best to give no warning when doing this--just go for it.

4. "Teen volunteering" and "babysitting" are synonymous. Do not ask your teenager whether he or she would like to volunteer. Simple drop your child off at the Nonprofit Agency with no warning. The Volunteer Coordinator will immediately be available to invest hours of training in your reluctant child. After all, the Volunteer Coordinator never attends meetings or has other appointments.

5. Never confirm an appointment. If the Volunteer Coordinator asks "Would you like to train on Tuesday from 3:00 - 5:00?" do NOT, under any circumstances, answer her. Simply show up on Tuesday at 2:00. If the Volunteer Coordinator is not immediately available to see you, be angry.

6. For men: Every woman who works at the Nonprofit Agency is in love with you. You should wait outside by their cars at night in the dark. Better yet, wait by a woman's car and make sure she sees you duck behind another vehicle when she approaches. This is appealing and mysterious, not frightening or threatening.

7. Assume that being a volunteer means you are about to be hired, especially if there are no positions available, and you have not given Human Resources an employment application. Ask the Volunteer Coordinator if you can work at the Nonprofit Agency on a daily basis.

8. The Nonprofit Agency is a good substitute for therapy. While performing volunteer work, it is perfectly acceptable to cry, threaten suicide, and/or describe personal traumas in great detail. There is no such thing as Too Much Information.

Above all, remember this: YOU are the most important thing. "Volunteer work" is something you do to amuse yourself, not something you do to assist the Nonprofit Agency. Happy volunteering!

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