6 Tools for Being an Effective Volunteer

volunteering in lane cove

Is 2016 your year to volunteer?  Will you be a class parent, a scout leader, committee member of your local sports club? If so, you will definitely want to read this blog and find out about some websites/apps that could make your life run a bit smoother.

Being a class parent or a volunteer is incredibly rewarding. However, you can get bogged down in a flurry of Emails and paperwork.   There are some people who hit “reply all” so often that I want to disable that function on their Email programme.

Lane Cove Volunteer 

Tool One – Volunteer Co-ordination

Every event, duty day or fundraiser needs volunteers. Don’t waste time sending out numerous emails and manually scheduling time.   There are several sites that will help you set up a volunteer roster such

Volunteer Spot

Volunteer Spot is an easy way to pull together volunteers for any event, outing or committee. No more having to fill in papers and hope that your child remembers to give the note to the teacher. It all so has a great calendar function.


Sign Up Genius

This is a brilliant way to organise people for canteen or duty rosters. Just choose a design theme, enter the dates, times and slots for which you need people to sign up for and then invite your group. Volunteers sign up online 24/7. You can even automatically send out reminders (and let’s face it we all know those people who volunteer but unless you constantly remind them, you will never see them).

Another benefit of sign up genius is that you can create specific task lists. So if you were organising a morning tea you can list the types of goods you want people to bring in (this is great as it limits people from going the easy option and ending up with a morning tea of fruit platters and scones from the local bakery).

sign up genius

Tool Two – Organising a Group Present

If you’ve ever had to organise a thank you gift for a member of a committee or a teacher, you will know how hard work this can be.  The person who collects the money always ends up out of pocket.  Do it all online with Group Prezzie or Group Together.  These programmes collects the money from your group. It eliminates the hassle of chasing peeps making the whole process so convenient.



Tool Three – Helping out Sick Friends

When you have a sick friend, it takes the load off the family if you can organise meals. Take The Ma Meal allow you to roster the food duty.


Tool Four – Silent Auction Organiser

So you’re holding an event and you are responsible for organising the silent auction. How do you keep track of the prizes donated and who donated them? Charity Auction Organizer offers an easy way to track auction items, bidders, create a mini website for you auction and process donations. You can also keep track of the donations for years to come (so you are not reinventing the wheel). This package does cost with packages ranging from $49.95 – $299.95 per year with different levels of service and functionality for nonprofits of all sizes. However take it from someone who has organised many silent auctions – it is worth paying for a good system.

If you are having a charity event in Lane Cove you can list your event for free on our Events Calendar – find our more here.


Tool Five – Organising a School Band

If you are involved in a school band committee you should check out My School Music – a website designed for parent run band committees to communicate.




Tool Six – Communicating with the Parent Community

If you want a website that is a is a secure, parent-only network making it easy for mums and dads with children in childcare, primary and high school to meet and communicate with each other then check out School parents.

Schoolparents offers many benefits, you can:

  • Signal your openness to meeting other parents in the school community;
  • Easily find parents; search by parent or child name, school name, even by year group;
  • Chat and share online with the security of protecting your child’s digital footprint;
  • Help your children settle into childcare and/or school by fostering friendships made at orientation days and in the playground;
  • Create and join Groups – great for class parents and sporting teams;
  • Create and send stylish E-Invitations for birthday parties, school events and more;
  • Buy and sell pre-loved children and family items within your school and wider community – text books, uniforms, musical instruments and more!; and
  • Follow your school to receive news, updates, messages and alerts from your school in real time.We have mentioned schoolparents before and about seven local pre school and schools have signed up for schoolparents.http://www.schoolparents.com.auschool parents lane cove

It is that time of the year when local sporting groups start registering players – get organised and check out their websites – you can find all about local sporting groups here

Have you got a favourite app or website that helps you communicate with volunteers or parent group? Tell us about it.


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