Missouri Western aims to help nonprofits improve

By MATT PIKE 

St. Joseph Post 

A summit will be held next week by Missouri Western State University to help nonprofits learn the best way to utilize volunteers.   

The summit will be held by the Centers of Entrepreneurship and Service at Missouri Western.   The center for service helps students earn volunteer hours for credit.   

Director of the Center for Entrepreneurship Annette Weeks says the big focus for the summit will be teaching nonprofits how to utilize their volunteers.  

“For many of the nonprofits utilizing volunteers and understanding how to cultivate them, how to make them feel that they’re useful, the number one reason people don’t give is they’re not asked, so who are you asking and how are you utilizing them,” Weeks tells KFEQ Hotline host Barry Birr. 

Weeks says nonprofits have also suffered during the workforce shortage, and have had to become creative to retain employees with things such as four-day work weeks.  

“But then that also goes back to how to utilize volunteers more,” Weeks explains. “As we know in the workforce shortage some of that is those baby boomers got out of the workforce a little earlier than maybe they intended because of the pandemic, but they still can be active, and so volunteerism and tapping into them and what’s your strategy to do that is all part of this as well.” 

The summit will have four different breakout sessions focusing on ways to utilize volunteers and will also feature a guest speaker during lunch.   

Director of the Center for Service Kim Sigrist says the center helps students earn volunteer hours for school credit, and some students through utilizing the center have learned how much they love to volunteer, recalling 

“She truly found her passion, she found her passion in working with nonprofits, in working with kids, and she liked that she could make a difference and she actually went on to get a job in Kansas City with the Boys and Girls Club,” Sigrist says. “So, we’ve seen a couple of students who’ve gone out and done those volunteer opportunities and went oh wow.” 

The Nonprofit summit will be held next Wednesday starting at 8:30am and running until 2:30pm in the Blum Union on the Missouri Western campus.  

Registration is required.  You can find more information by contacting the Center for Entrepreneurship. 

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