Philanthropy Friday: PMI-COC Volunteer Corps
Skills-based volunteerism is a growing trend across the country that utilizes the skills, experience, talents and education of volunteers and matches them with the needs of nonprofits. Locally, organizations like HandsOn Central Ohio are developing this concept in Columbus. The Project Management Institute’s Central Ohio Chapter has partnered with HandsOn in the development of one such program, the PMI-COC Volunteer Corps.
The Volunteer Corps is an outreach committee of the Project Management Institute’s Central Ohio chapter (PMI-COC). Founded in early 2010 to provide a way for the members to give back to the communities in which they live and work, the volunteers in the program come from a range of industries from information technology to construction to financial services. Each volunteer is skilled in managing the budget, timeline and risks associated with a project to ensure that it is completed successfully. Through the PMI-COC Volunteer Corps these members are opening their talents to the nonprofit community.
Services, Benefits and Projects
The PMI-COC Volunteer Corps offers nonprofits pro-bono consultation from a project management professional throughout the life of the project. This partnership provides experience and expertise that a nonprofit may not have and can help ensure the success of the nonprofit’s project. And when projects are successful, organizations are successful.
This means any nonprofit running a project could potentially benefit from the PMI-COC Volunteer Corps. The only requirement is that the project has a defined start and end, in other words that it’s not general operations. Just as the work performed by the nonprofit community is different from one organization to the next, the way in which the Volunteer Corps helps would be tailored to the situation.
Currently, the PMI-COC Volunteer Corps is in search of local organizations that are about to start a project, or have one underway. A project can be just about anything, from building a new basketball court to upgrading a back office IT system.
One such project that PMI-COC Volunteer Corps and HandsOn Central Ohio has partnered on is to build a new website for its BoardLink service. This project, funded by the Columbus Foundation, will make it easier for nonprofits in need of board members to find local citizen’s interested in joining a board. Tony Weaver, a volunteer with the PMI-COC Volunteer Corps, has worked closely with HandsOn since the start, assisting them in creating a schedule, managing the project budget and ensuring that the project is moving towards success. Joanna Huffer, the HandsOn staff member responsible for the project has said “Tony continues to “WOW” us with his talents, skills and interest in the BOARDLINK web site development!! We are actually having a lot of fun.”
If you know of any nonprofit that might be interested in working with PMI-COC Volunteers Corps, contact Adam Smith, Director of Community Outreach at [email protected]. If an organization is unsure about whether their plans would qualify they are encouraged to reach out and ask. PMI-COC Volunteers Corps is happy to talk with any organization in the community about the work they’re doing and how they can help.
For more information on the PMI Central Ohio Community Outreach Program visit www.pmicoc.org.
Philanthropy Friday is a feature article by Michele Savoldi that will highlight a Columbus area non-profit organization every other week. For more nonprofit information follow Michele on Twitter at @cbusimpressions and @inkindconnect.