Volunteers helped to produce one of our best luncheons to date. Volunteers continue to be available 24/7 for our emergency hotline Ñ 34 years uninterrupted. We have a man helping to promote our menÕs program, who is very engaged.
During this last year, The Cedars of Marin Volunteer Program underwent some changes and enhancements. We are very proud of this progress. One of the greatest enhancements was through the creation of a 16-page, professional-level Volunteer Handbook. Through this development process, we were able to assess and further define the parameters of our program, which, in turn, will help us create and implement staff training and engagement. Our handbook includes brand new policy and supplemental forms/tools (such as a volunteer agreement) that have proven to be very useful for us. A particularly effective section of the handbook, that we call ÒTips for Working With Cedars Clients,Ó gives specific examples and scenarios that volunteers at Cedars might encounter and then provides ways in which to address these situations. This information is so very helpful for those volunteers who are new to ÒworkingÓ with adults with Developmental Disabilities. In the past year, we have received in excess of 2400 hours of volunteer service from our volunteer base in both our Residential sites/Activities Program and throughout our three Day Programs (excluding the significant time commitment made by our 15 person volunteer Board of Trustees). In this past year, we have integrated several new volunteers who have been especially valuable and generous to Cedars in various ways. We are very proud to have welcomed and worked with a wonderful man whose children volunteered with Cedars in the past. He is a construction ÒguruÓ who has built many structures and led many projects at our ÒTextile Art CenterÓ day program. One of his contributions was his arrangement of a significant discount/donation for re-paving of the main driveway at the TAC! We recognized him as Cedars Volunteer of the Year at our last fundraiser, in hopes of conveying to him how much his generosity means to us. Additionally, we have enjoyed the presence and teachings of a wonderful new volunteer who comes monthly from many miles away to lead two sessions of Yoga with clients at another one of our day programs, The Victory Center for Arts & Communication. She has a unique ability with our clients and they especially look forward to her classes.
We developed and implemented an online sign-up system for volunteer registration. We recruited and coordinated the efforts of hundreds of off-site volunteers to assist with 1) Summer Lunch Distributions and 2) the distribution of fliers to promote a holiday event. We recruited and trained eight ÒLEAD VOLUNTEERSÓ to assist with weekday supervision of warehouse volunteers.
BTGCP has developed strong working partnerships with over 10 schools in the Bay Area who provide both students and teachers to volunteer in all of our programs. Student tutors have been actively recruiting, with my support, new volunteers from their High School sports teams and have built a informal program of replacing themselves in the schedule with friends from other sports when theirs in season and they need to take the semester off from tutoring. BTGCP provided a half day Volunteer Program training for our tutors and mentors with over 60 volunteers in attendance for both the large group session and program specific break out session.
In the last fiscal year, our programs engaged over 3,200 volunteers that donated over 71,000 hours of service equivalent to $1,775,342 of labor time beyond what is currently available in our agency budget. Our volunteer program successfully recruited and engaged over 120 new volunteers through one-time seasonal volunteer opportunities assisting programs with holiday events such as Thanksgiving luncheons and Christmas parties. Our program launched a new online application process to avoid the fax and print heavy process that had been used for many years.