President's Perspective Blog

National Volunteer Week: Thank You

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Given that we are a community of fundraisers and rely heavily on volunteers, you are probably aware that it is National Volunteer Week.

But…just in case, not only do I want to recognize this week, but I also want to celebrate the many volunteers for AFP and their countless contributions to our community.

National Volunteer Week is an opportunity to recognize and thank volunteers who lend their time, talent, voice and support to causes they care about. Volunteers are the lifeblood of any charity, and I hope you’ll use this week to thank your own organization’s volunteers.

I made a video message of thanks to AFP’s volunteers, and you can see it here.

I mean every word I say in the video—AFP would not be where we are without our volunteers. Volunteers came together to form AFP and create programs, educational resources and documents like our Code of Ethics.

Even as we’ve moved to a more professional, staff-driven organization over the decades, chapters and members remain the heart of our community. So many activities, services and events that AFP Global offers originated from volunteer ideas at the chapter level.

I’m incredibly appreciative of EVERYONE in our volunteer system—at the Global level and chapter level—especially as the pandemic has changed how we volunteer. Most of your volunteer work for AFP (and probably other organizations) is still remote and virtual, and that can be exhausting after a day of meetings and work online. But you continue your great efforts, and through your dedication, you are supporting and influencing fundraisers every day.

There’s one aspect of volunteerism I want to highlight that I think we sometimes forget. The power of volunteerism derives not only from the work the volunteer does but also from the model they set.

Whatever the reason you volunteer with AFP—whether it’s giving back to the profession or helping out colleagues new to fundraising—your example is powerful. It makes others want to get involved and join the cause. You set a standard that inspires others to want to follow in your footsteps.

So, whether you are a member of one of the AFP Global boards, serving on one of our committees or in chapter leadership, or just getting your feet wet with AFP volunteer work—THANK YOU. All of us at AFP Global appreciate the time, talent and treasure you bring to the fundraising community. Your work makes everything we do possible.

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Mike Geiger, MBA, CPA

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