Volunteers

iVillage Member
Registered: 02-20-2007
Volunteers
25
Mon, 03-30-2009 - 11:57pm
I joined a neighborhood mom's group. They coordinate all types of activities for families in the community. Including things like fundraisers, bake sales, potlucks, playgroups, and also fun things for the kids like pictures with santa, the easter bunny, etc. Most are women who do not work outside the home. Some work part time. One of them recently went back to work in a hospital, about 32 hours per week. So she quit doing the volunteer activities but wanted her child to still participate in a few things here & there; one of the moms made a resentful comment about how she wasn't "pulling her weight" and "we work hard to do these things and others (i.e. the working moms) don't pitch in". And now she is worried they might take their negative attitude out on her child as well, so she is withdrawing him from the activities. Is it okay to tell a parent that if they weren't part of the volunteer effort, that their child is no longer welcome to participate? Should one do volunteer work but resent those who don't or can't volunteer, for whatever reason?

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iVillage Member
Registered: 04-22-2005
Tue, 03-31-2009 - 12:31am

It sounds more like a co-op than a community volunteer thing, if only families who contribute are allowed to participate.

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If the group is supposedly volunteering for the benefit of the entire community, then no it is not okay to say that any child is not welcome to participate based on the parent's involvement in said activity.

If the group is a co-op, and the activities are meant to be for families in the co-op, then leaving the co-op inherently means leaving the activities.

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iVillage Member
Registered: 02-07-2009
Tue, 03-31-2009 - 7:32am

You have hit on one of my pet peeves. Volunteer organizations who do not quite understand the meaning of volunteer. Volunteering means to choose to give of ones time, if it is mandatory than you are not a volunteer.

It is perfectly all right for organization to require participation but then they are not a volunteer organization.

iVillage Member
Registered: 03-27-2003
Tue, 03-31-2009 - 8:03am
This is one of those situations where semantics really matter. What you have described is actually a co-op and not a volunteer organization. Volunteer organizations do not mandate participation. Co-ops do: they are run by and for only the participants. (I've belonged to a number of co-ops in my time.) Proper use of the term "co-op" rather than "volunteer organization" would have avoided hurt feelings and misunderstanding on both sides.
iVillage Member
Registered: 01-15-2006
Tue, 03-31-2009 - 9:26am

i'm not sure i know what you're talking about.

 

iVillage Member
Registered: 03-31-2003
Tue, 03-31-2009 - 10:02am

These women sound dreadful.


They truly aren't doing this for altruistic reasons if they can't see past their own pious selves and realize that they are volunteering to make ALL of the children in their neighborhood feel included.


suzjuly6.jpg picture by LadyCaribou

iVillage Member
Registered: 06-27-1998
Tue, 03-31-2009 - 10:22am

In my experience with volunteer run organizations, a couple of things usually happen...1.

PumpkinAngel

iVillage Member
Registered: 02-20-2007
Tue, 03-31-2009 - 1:12pm

I agree & I also think if someone resents the volunteer work, then they shouldn't be doing it in the first place.

iVillage Member
Registered: 02-20-2007
Tue, 03-31-2009 - 1:16pm

It is a non-profit group that provides service to the community. It is a religious-based organization.

iVillage Member
Registered: 03-27-2003
Tue, 03-31-2009 - 1:24pm

If they really do provide service to the community and not just to families who participate in volunteering, then the child of somebody who no longer volunteers should still be welcome at the activities. If volunteering is required in order to recieve benefit, then it is a co-op regardless of what it calls itself.


iVillage Member
Registered: 04-22-2005
Tue, 03-31-2009 - 1:28pm

If they are claiming to provide a community service, then anyone in the community should be able to partake of that service, not just the ones planning/offering the service.

Yeesh, it reminds me of how some people complain about how much time they spends doing something when NOTHING and NOBODY is requiring them to do it. That's a pet peeve of mine. If you (generic "you") don't want to make a million cupcakes, don't volunteer to make a million cupcakes. If you DO want to make a million cupcakes, then go for it, but don't complain about the people who DON'T want to or are too busy.

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