Build Your Case for Investing in Volunteer Engagement

Building a case for investing in volunteer engagement at your organization lays an foundation for future funding. These three steps will ensure your case to present to potential funders about the value and return on investing in your organization’s volunteer engagement infrastructure and strategy.

Steps to take to Build Your Case

1. Prepare

Preparation is vital to making a clear and compelling case for support. Use the Key Questions to Consider before Contacting Potential Funders to guide your preparation.

2. Construct a Case Statement

After answering the Key Questions, use those responses to craft a case statement. A case statement is a document that communicates the rationale, need, focus, and vision of what will be different as a result of an initiative for which you are seeking support. A comprehensive case statement usually includes:

  • Background on why the initiative is needed at this time
  • Connection to mission and vision
  • Stakeholders
  • Examples of exemplary programs at the organization or at peer organizations
  • A Direct Request for Support and Action (your case statement)

Click here for a template to use to develop your case statement.

When crafting your case statement, be specific about your strengths, your vision, and the needs you have to help you accomplish your vision of leveraging volunteer engagement to increase your impact. Encourage funders to examine your organization’s ability to steward not only their financial resources, but their human resources as well. Share stories of how volunteers are already effectively building your capacity and increasing your organization’s impact on the community, the environment, and/or the world.

Furthermore, incorporate compelling messages about the value of investing in strategic volunteer engagement. For the most recent research on volunteer engagement, link to the research summary.

3. Present your Case

In addition to preparing your case, develop speaking points and prepare well for objections by potential funders. Examples include:

Financial resources are limited, yet community needs continue to rise. We must steward well the resources we have and develop creative, new ways to tap the abundant resource of skills and passion around us.

Supporting volunteer engagement infrastructure gives you the “multiplier effect!” You multiply your investment by helping our organization serve more clients, raise more funds, and deliver more programs by engaging volunteers to serve our mission. 

For additional resources to help you prepare, develop, and present your case for funder support of volunteer engagement, use the resources below: