Volunteerism in the Age of Obama
Volunteerism in the Age of Obamaback

 I don’t know about you, but I’m fascinated by the creation of an Office of Social Innovation and Civic Participation. The Obama Administration is looking to the public to help define what the government’s role should be in increasing civic participation. It also wants to know what best practices are available and how to motivate people to get involved. From time-to-time, I will provide updates on what they are doing, with an emphasis on the nonprofit sector. 

From May 21st to May 28th, the Obama Administration held the first phase of an unprecedented online brainstorming process for engaging the public in policymaking. Hosted by the National Academy of Public Administration, Open Government Dialogue allows the pubic to submit ideas, discuss and refine others’ ideas, and vote the best ones to the top. The first phase garnered 900 submissions and 33,000 votes on ideas. Ideas that impact the nonprofit sector included providing training and toolkits to organizations so they can discover what issues are of most concern to their constituents and how best to address those concerns. 

As we all know, nonprofits make a real difference in our lives and of those in need. We can make a real difference to these organizations by getting involved in the causes we most care about. Not always easy, given our hectic lifestyles. Do you volunteer and if so, how do you juggle everything to make the time?