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~ May 2002 ~
  • Volunteer Today Remodels Its Bookstore
  • Can They See It?
  • The Review
  • Conference in the UK

Volunteer Today Remodels Its Bookstore

Interested in books or kits on working with volunteers or boards? Visit the newly "remodeled" Volunteer Today Bookstore. You can order online, using a credit card, behind a secure "fire wall." You can see pictures of the books and read about the content. And shipping is your choice-fast or pony express!

The snappy new design is due to Laura Bunt our intrepid Web Master, Ruben Bybee of Blue Mountain Internet, and Sara Strickland-the scanner master! It is also so you can find resources in a timely way to run your program more effectively. Click on the Bookstore link in the main menu.

Can They See It?

Use these guides when you are training.

Flip chart letters need to be 3" high and written straight. Use paper with lines and write big. If others are writing on paper, remind them to write big and have lots of paper available.
Slides can be seen across a room only if you can hold them at arm's length and read the print. That will make it clear enough for trainees.
Put an overhead transparency on the floor and stand-up. If you can read the print, those in the classroom should be able to see it.
In doing a slide show follow these rules-no more than four colors on a slide, six words per line, or six lines per slide.

The Review

Adults learn best when a training session ends with a review. This is an opportunity for the learner to rethink what has happened during the session and focus in on the points to remember. Trainers often skip the review. There are a variety of reasons for this; not putting time in the training plan for a review, activities during the session took more time than anticipated, or never included it in the first place. It is time to re-think the importance of the review to the impact of training on the learner.

A review can be as short as asking the question, "When someone asks you what you learned in this session, what will you tell them?" Allow each person to respond if the group is smaller than 25. If larger, get a sampling of responses. It can also be a longer activity that requires work at the beginning of the session, which is then revisited to see how far the learner has come during the training.

Distributing an evaluation is not a review. A review is a conscious activity that requires the learner to go back over the content and determine in some measure its usefulness. Consider some of the following when deciding what type of review to use.

    • Choose an activity that is appropriate to the learners and the content. Some activities might be appropriate for seniors and bore teens to death.
    • Be sensitive to individual needs. Check out individual capabilities to do an activity. If you want people to walk around and write on easel paper, provide an alternative method for someone with a physical disability.
    • If you would be embarrassed doing the activity, do not expect learners to do it.
    • Make sure the learners know you are doing a review and that its purpose is to help them capture the key points for the session.
    • Sometimes it is worth trying new ways of reviewing just because it keeps you fresh as a trainer.

Conference in the UK

The eighth annual Researching the Voluntary Sector Conference is being held September 3-4, 2002 in Nottingham, UK. The conference organizers are seeking papers from the UK and other countries. The two-day event is a unique meeting place for researchers and practitioners from the voluntary sector, universities, and those who are policy makers.

Topics covered at the conference in papers include such things as the voluntary sector and community sector in a changing political climate, the role of the sector in building social capital, and community capacity building to name a few. Abstracts of papers, 400-600 words, should be submitted to NCVO by June 7, 2002. For more information contact Jayne Blackborow at or 020 7520 2484.


Close to 200 colleges and universities offer academic programs on nonprofit and volunteer sector management. They are usually master's degree programs, but not always. American Humanics sponsors undergraduate programs, as well. If you are looking to push out the professional development window, consider taking a course at one of these colleges. A full list resides at Thank Roseanne Mirabella, of Seton Hall University for keeping up with this list.

Copyright 2002 by Nancy Macduff.

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