6 Steps for Organizing Service Projects

Serving in your community is a vital part of doing your part and giving back to others. Whether you are volunteering time with your team at work, gathering neighbors together for a worthy cause, rallying your church group or teaching kids the importance of service, there is thoughtful planning that must take place to successfully complete your project.  

The act of organizing a group for serving can be a challenge, but these tips will help walk you through the process and show you how sign ups can be an aid. No matter how you are choosing to serve, simplify your group efforts with these actionable steps! 

Step 1: Find a need in your community 

When deciding on a service project to complete, it's important that you look to your community and consider what needs there are in your area. You can contact nonprofit organizations in your area or visit their website. Many nonprofits have a list of project needs and welcome groups of volunteers. Additionally, sites like VolunteerMatch also provide a list of volunteer opportunities with your local area. 

If you need some inspiration, we have 50 community service ideas for you to get started on projects that can become ongoing efforts, or just a one-time service.  

Step 2: See what you can do to help 

Once you have chosen the direction of your service project, it's time to decide on the actionable items you can do to make a difference. If your group will be volunteering with a nonprofit, it's important to talk with the volunteer coordinator to learn about special project needs. Oftentimes, nonprofits have additional projects and needs that are not listed on their website.  

If you're realizing that your project will take place in shifts, recur on a regular basis or involve a variety of projects for multiple groups - it might be best to create multiple sign ups. We offer a number of options to display all your sign ups in one place. For example, our sign up Tabbing feature is great way to link multiple sign ups together to showcase multiple service opportunities. This makes it easy for your audience to locate a grouped collection of similar volunteer opportunities. 

Step 3: Organize a plan of action 

When you've decided how you are going to serve, simplify the project organization with a sign up. You can create time slots for people to volunteer, collect donations or ask for people to RSVP for the service event that is taking place. When organizing a project, be sure to clearly communicate instructions to your volunteers. This is especially true if they need to prepare or dress accordingly for the project. If possible, you'll want to have a leader on hand who can help give direction on the day of the project. 

Step 4: Recruit volunteers 

Making sure you have enough hands to help is important. Recruitment starts with casting a clear vision. You want to create a clear sense of purpose and let volunteers envision the impact that their efforts will make. Once you've cast vision and helped an audience connect with a cause, you're ready to have them take action!  

Create a sign up and invite your audience to participate. Be sure to communicate clear instructions about the project to your volunteers. You will also want to ensure the opportunities make it easy for them to participate. A project that is too large or time consuming can scare away a number of volunteers. 

It's also important to communicate all project logistics up front. On a sign up you can attach waivers, share the location with our mapping feature, or customize a confirmation message to ensure that your participants have everything they need.  

Step 5: Implement the plan 

Once you have set up your sign ups and begun to recruit help from your group, make sure that you've collected all the information that you need prior to serving. Ask custom questions through your sign up to get any details needed from your group, even if it's as simple as their t-shirt size!    

Send custom reminders out to participants before your project takes place to make sure everyone is on the same page and ready to serve! This will make the project day less stressful and should lessen the likelihood of a volunteer forgetting something.  

Step 6: Follow up 

Once your service event has concluded, there is still work to be done. It's vital that you follow up with the volunteers who served alongside you and thank them for the time and energy they devoted to your service efforts.  

Another option to keep in mind after your service project is to track volunteer hours with a custom report if you think your service may become an ongoing event. This is also a great way to see who is putting in the time and effort in your group and can allow you to give them an extra shout-out for their outstanding assistance! 


We hope these tips come in handy the next time you start organizing a service project with a group, whether it be big or small. Now it's time to put these steps into action and get to serving in your community.  

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