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Older Volunteers
A Guide to Research and Practice


February 1993 | 272 pages | SAGE Publications, Inc
Recipient of the 1994 Staley/Robeson/Ryan/St. Lawrence Research Prize from the National Society of Fund Raising Executives What motivates people to do volunteer work? What are the most effective ways of maintaining commitment in volunteers? What problems are confronted in working with volunteers--especially older volunteers--and what are the solutions to these problems? How can organizations avoid exploiting older volunteers? Answering these and a host of other questions, Older Volunteers offers a comprehensive review of current research and case studies to provide a synthesis of "best practices" for those who plan, implement, and participate in volunteer programs. The authors examine the range of volunteer roles and organizations, multiple motivations for volunteering, techniques of recruiting and keeping volunteers, and managerial issues. They also examine and discuss research on minority elderly and address such formidable issues as bias from paid staff and the potential for exploitation. Accessible and well-written, Older Volunteers is essential reading for all who work with volunteers, including health and social-service agencies, cultural organizations, religious organizations, and schools. "A wonderful piece of work! Finally, an interesting, well-documented, and well-balanced treatment of the subject of older volunteers. We in the field tend to operate under a number of assumptions, and Older Volunteers is a real eye-opener. The book is lively, well written, and fills a unique and presently empty gap in the literature." --Judy Helein, Director of the Office of Volunteer Coordination, AARP, Washington, D.C. "Older Volunteers may be the most helpful book you read this year. It explains, in the most comprehensive presentation to date, what we need to know about utilizing volunteers in our organizations and in our fund-raising programs. Its principles of managing volunteers are straightforward, sensible and--most important--based on research. . . . Step-by-step, they take the reader through cutting edge research in this field, distilling the findings along the way. Their meticulous efforts to synthesize and condense a wealth of information that is sometimes inconclusive, if not contradictory, lend authority to their message. Older Volunteers is also a 'good read.' It is elegantly written, free of jargon, and relies on simple, declarative sentences." --Advancing Philanthropy "First of all, I'm extremely excited about seeing this information published--it is one of the most comprehensive documents I've seen, not only on older volunteers, but general volunteer management as well. It will be very valuable for practitioners!" --Melissa Eystad, Chief of Volunteer Services, Minnesota Department of Human Services "A major contribution of Older Volunteers is the way it connects research findings with actual practice. Career volunteer administrators and those just starting out in the field will find in Older Volunteers a wealth of information and creative strategies to guide them in developing more effective and vibrant senior volunteer programs." --Frances F. Butler, Washington Representative, National Association of Retired Senior Volunteer Program (RSVP) Directors "This is a carefully researched book. . . I think that this is a landmark book. . . If you are into volunteers, then this book should be in your library." --Baseline "An invaluable resource." --Joyce Forster in The Philanthropist "This is a well documented, well researched study of volunteerism, with specific attention paid to the older volunteer where data is available. The strength of this compilation lies in its research, which is relevant to all volunteer programs. The authors present a synthesis of research literature and the results of case studies of volunteer programs. . . . The reader cannot help but acknowledge, with the authors, that as our senior population becomes proportionately greater, volunteer programs must align their strategies accordingly." --Center for Nonprofit Management

 
PART ONE: BACKGROUND
 
Making Miracles
 
Who Volunteers?
 
Politics to Bake Sales
Types of Volunteering  
 
Why Volunteer?
 
PART TWO: WORKING WITH OLDER VOLUNTEERS
 
Recruiting Older Volunteers
 
Keeping Volunteers
 
Older Volunteers as Workers
 
PART THREE: SPECIAL TOPICS
 
Ethics and Other Thorny Issues
 
Minority Elders as Volunteers
 
e Benefits
 
to
 
Older Volunteers
 
PART FOUR: CONCLUSIONS AND IMPLICATIONS
 
Thinking Strategically About Older Volunteers

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