Trinity: Habitat for Humanity is a housing service organization that partners with working families to help them have access to safe and affordable housing. Our affiliate serves Knox County, and we work with families in Knoxville, Tennessee. There are affiliates all over the US and it is an international organization. Families in our program participate in a very extensive homeowner education program. Classes include budget, home maintenance, how to be a good neighbor, understanding wills and insurance. They also participate in a construction class and they come out and build their house working alongside other family members and volunteers.
Trinity: The biggest misconception about Habitat is that we give houses away and we don’t. We’re just giving folks an opportunity to purchase a home at an affordable rate.
Trinity: There’s a lot of great statistics out there about what stable housing does for families. 73% of our families attribute positive changes in safety and health to home ownership here in our program.
Trinity: We work with a large number of volunteers – if I had to guess, I’d say we engage with over 3,000 volunteers on a yearly basis. Construction activities occur three or four days a week, and during those days, volunteers are present in various areas. Additionally, we have volunteers working in our retail store called Our Restore, as well as volunteers in administrative roles. We also have specialized volunteers handling a variety of tasks.
Trinity: Oh gosh, I tell people this all the time: If you’re not using VolunteerHub, you’re not living your best life. Tracking volunteer data on spreadsheets or Word documents isn’t very fun. Before VolunteerHub, that’s how we did it. It feels like we lived in the dinosaur era before 2018 when we first started using VolunteerHub.
Trinity: I love the automated waiver functionality. We have had to make some changes to our waiver, and VolunteerHub allows us to quickly create and update a new waiver, which is fantastic. I also like that the system notifies me when a volunteer has not completed their waiver. I also really like the texting feature because when we’ve had to make last minute changes, we can notify volunteers quickly. Finally, I love VolunteerHub’s Zapier integration. We are using the integration to connect VolunteerHub with another piece of software that we use to record videos. The integration allows us to send welcome videos directly, and automatically, to volunteers as part of their onboarding process. That first touch point is huge and VolunteerHub is helping us make it a welcoming one that volunteers will remember.
Trinity: Yes, absolutely. The thing that stood out to me most with Volunteer Hub was the capability to segment volunteers. We work with a lot of different corporate faith community groups and to send them all to one page doesn’t allow me to provide a unique experience. Being able to segment volunteers is also valuable when reporting for grants and when sending communications to individual volunteers or volunteer groups.
Trinity: I love the tech support from VolunteerHub. When I first started using the software, I struggled a bit. I think it was the first time that I had really dived deep into this kind of software. But the support team at VolunteerHub was fantastic. They were testing things with me and helping me and answering every single question I had and provided me with resources to be successful. The response time from support is amazing.
Trinity: I would say just make the jump. It is OK to start small with one specific area of volunteers to get your feet wet. Sometimes it can feel very daunting and it is a lot of change, especially, if you work with a lot of different volunteers that have been used to doing things one specific way. Change is hard but necessary. If you are considering VolunteerHub, just know that you’re going to have great support and that making the transition to volunteer management software will help you in the long run.
Trinity: Visit our website (knoxvillehabitatforhumanity.com) and click on “volunteer” from the “get involved” drop down. We are always looking for people within our community to help support our mission.