I’m hoping to put together some “mythbusting” content around our P&C to address all of the “reasons” people give for not joining us. I think sometimes P&Cs get a bad rap, and I really want to dispel these myths to encourage new members. What “reasons” have you heard (or maybe even had yourself) for not volunteering?
Here are some reasons our Facebook community have heard for not volunteering:
- “I don’t have time!” – How much time do you think it takes?
- The main one we hear is, “If I help once I will have to help every time”
- One reader shared a link to their P&C page Mythbusters
- We are constantly being told, “but I didn’t even know this event was happening, I would definitely have volunteered if I’d known about it”. This is despite advertising in the school newsletter, 3 Facebook pages, posters around the school, local radio station and flyers being sent home to families. Next year we will be using a signup website, asking those people who are interested, for their email addresses so we can send them an email roster for each event.
- “Its a clique!!” – No, it’s not. You might just have fun and realise it’s no clique at all.
- “I have kids” -that’s my favourite laugh, don’t we all?
- “I work full time” – this is a common one. (If this is a common response for you too, try our tips on Virtual Volunteering)
- One excuse we got this year was “I would love to volunteer but I can’t leave my preppie unsupervised at the discos”… my response, ‘that’s cool, we could pop you into a security/supervision role so your volunteering and still near your child.’ The response was “oh I didn’t know I could do that.” Just come see us and we can give you something to do that works for all of us.
- One I have been told is “I can’t say no, so if I’m not part of it I won’t get asked to do more than I can handle”
Here are a few ideas on some different approaches to take that will welcome volunteers:
- Our P&F recently started a crafting day/evening, and they’ve been making things like reusable bags from T-shirt’s and beeswax wraps (any extras are sold through the weekly Friday markets with profits going to the school’s causes). This weekly event is a unique way to engage parents outside of the traditional “meeting” concept. These parents then become “warm” to the idea of the P&F, and are more likely to be the ones involved in the future.
- For our Music P&C I always post in a different direction …’we need your opinion, your voice is valuable’. You don’t want to do a certain job, this is fine but your ideas are important. You do want to be more involved, have knowledge of what’s going on. It’s a topic your child is involved in, so have your say. If a point can’t be discussed in a meeting, we will discuss in our Facebook group.
Here are some mythbusters that have been shared by our readers:
Originally published 7 May, 2019
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- Toxic Leadership
- What a P&C really does
- Volunteering Doesn’t Make the World a Better Place – Comment
- 6 Hacks for Productive Committee Meetings
- Thanking Volunteers