How do you thank your volunteers?

Give volunteers a well-deserved boost by showing them how much you value their work

We’ve all seen our children’s eyes light up when they receive praise for a job well done, and though we may deny it, us grown-ups are just the same. Like our children, we enjoy a thoughtful thank you or kindly gesture of appreciation and recognition. It makes us feel good and more likely to contribute again or even take on a bigger role.

Say ‘thank you’ often

The easiest way to make volunteers feel appreciated is to say ‘thank you’ as often as possible. Thank them during a conversation, on emails or on WhatsApp groups. If someone goes the extra mile, thank them specifically for what they did.

Say it with words

Sending a universal ‘thank you’ ensures no volunteers are left out. The PTA mailing list, school newsletter, and social media channels, are ideal places to express your gratitude. If you’re thanking people who helped at an event, provide details of how much it raised and how you intend to spend the funds – it makes a difference for volunteers to understand how their contribution will benefit the school. Celebrate International Volunteer Day on 5 December by highlighting the contribution your volunteers make.

Make a thank you video

For the more tech-savvy amongst you, how about making a video? Ask the children and staff to film themselves sending messages of thanks to the volunteers. Then edit the footage together to share on social media. A gesture like this will go a long way in retaining helpers.

Send a card

For more impact, send hand-written thank you cards. Thanking volunteers for the tasks they completed comes across as thoughtful and genuine. For a heart-warming gesture that’s less time-consuming for the committee, ask if the children can write thank you cards or work together on a giant poster to pin up at the school. As the pupils are the beneficiaries of your fundraising efforts, a thank you from them is especially meaningful.

Present them with a certificate

We’re all praise junkies here at PTA+, so we’ve created a Certificate of Appreciation for you to present to your hard-working PTA volunteers. Use it to let them know how much you value their help.

Run a volunteer event

Recognise hard-working helpers by holding an end-of-year picnic just for them. It’s the perfect time to present volunteers with cards and certificates – just make sure there’s one for each attendee. If you can’t get everyone together, celebrate the contribution made by class reps by inviting them to a coffee morning and handing out plenty of cake!