Monday, August 11, 2008

My thoughts on volunteerism...

Good friend, Roger Craver, and his peer Tom Belford have posted my thoughts on seeking a metric for volunteerism that can be used to motivate people to do more, or at least do something.

Their blog, The Agitator, discusses the latest in donation trends.

My argument is...
It would seem that we really need a conversion factor; a coefficient of contribution, so to speak that allows us to convert dollars and hours, respectively, into another unit of philanthropic measure. How about the "DoneGood?"

Because Americans revel in the chance to collect points; we desire to be the top point collector. Non-profits could take advantage of this cultural premise in their own microcosm or there could be an over-arching reward zone that shows people all of the various opportunities to contribute.

If, for the rest of your life, you need to contribute 4000 hours, then we can multiple volunteer hours by hourly value to get total contribution needed: 4000 hours x $19.51/hour = $78,040 is what each needs to contribute.

With the 2007 life expectancy of an American at 78.1 years (CIA Factbook) and the median American of 36.7 (CIA Factbook, I couldn’t find a reliable mean age), then the average American has 41.4 years to contribute $78,040 of money+time.

For each year, one would have to contribute a combination of money and time that valued: $78,040 / 41.4 = $1885

If 100% volunteer time, that would amount to: $1885 / $19.51 per hr = 96.6 hours/year.

How much time have you put in?

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