This National Volunteer Month, Catchafire.org, alongside its dedicated volunteers, is celebrating the milestone of reaching over one million volunteer hours. It started with an idea: Catchafire Founder, Rachael Chong, sought to create an innovative pathway for her colleagues to volunteer with organizations they care about. Little did she know that this once small group of coworkers would grow to a pool of thousands of worldwide volunteers who would deliver over one million volunteer hours. Ten years in, Catchafire has matched pro bono talent with nonprofits on more than 30,000 project collaborations and channeled more than $139 million of impact to the social good sector.
Catchafire makes it easy for talented professionals to give their skills to mission driven organizations in need. Nonprofits provide critical support to their communities, but limited budgets can block them from hiring the expert talent they need to operate most effectively. Skills-based volunteering bridges that gap.
“For people looking to give back, we provide a new kind of volunteering that helps anyone donate their skills and expertise to thousands of nonprofits serving every type of cause and community,” says Matt Miszewski, Catchafire CEO.
A recent volunteer survey revealed that 65% of Catchafire’s volunteer base reported having outside experience in the nonprofit sector. On average, Catchafire volunteers have eleven years of professional experience—bringing exceptional knowledge and expertise to consultation calls and projects such as marketing collateral, strategic planning, fundraising event support, IT training, professional development, and more.
Reaching 1 million volunteer hours isn’t just a reflection of volunteers who sign up to complete one project, then leave. Catchafire volunteers create lasting relationships, with over half staying involved with nonprofits beyond the initial nonprofit match and first project. A majority end up joining the organization in an advisory role, while others become donors, or join the Board of Directors.
As Catchafire grows and enters into new communities, the social impact organization looks ahead to reaching its next milestone. Matt goes on to share, “We absolutely would not have reached this pivotal milestone without our volunteers. They are the foundation of Catchafire, and simply put, they are what allows us to do what we do. Our ecosystem of impact is growing and as more volunteers join our platform, we’re looking forward to reaching 2 million hours volunteered at full speed ahead.”
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