3 Fundamentals of a Successful Volunteer Application.
A lot of people seek out volunteer opportunities for various reasons. It’s a rewarding way to give back to the community you love and support. At the same time, it can help you gain professional experience and expand your personal network.
If you’re planning to pursue this path, it’s important to know how to write an application letter for a volunteer role. Below, we offer fundamental writing tips to crafting a successful volunteer application.
Use the Appropriate Volunteer Application Format
While charities are eager to get as many volunteers to support their cause, staff and board members will require you to send in an application letter to see if you’re fit for volunteer work. As such, you need to ensure the structure of your application matches the organization you’re looking to dedicate your time to.
Here’s what you should do:
- For a professional-looking volunteer application that’s easy on the eyes, the ideal spacing to your letter is a 1.0 margin on all sides, and 1.0 or 1.15 line spacing.
- To make it even easier to read, use basic fonts like Calibri, Times New Roman, Verdana, or Courier New, in 12 pt. size.
- Avoid chunky blocks of text. Double-space between paragraphs to make it more readable.
Things to Include in your Volunteer Application
A volunteer application must be professional, informative, and easy to read. If you need writing assistance along the way, you can turn to an expert writer. You can check IHateWritingEssays writing services reviews to find a safe and reliable writing website.
A well-structured cover letter includes the following:
Name and Address
Whether it’s a physical letter or an email, an effective volunteer application begins with your full name, home address, and contact number, right on top of your cover letter. If you’re sending it as a physical letter, remember to include your email address right under your name.
Begin the letter with a brief greeting. This must be polite and professional, and if possible, includes the recipient’s name. Otherwise, the standard format would be to write “Dear Mr./Ms. [Recipient’s Last Name]” or simply “Dear Sir/Madam”.
This is the first paragraph of your application, introducing yourself to the recipient. Here, you write down a summary of who you are and why you’re interested to work as a volunteer. You can also mention how or where you heard about the need for volunteers. Plus, point if you have a personal reference or a contact within the company.
Body of the Letter
The main section of your application. Here, you need to explain why you’re suitable for volunteer work. You must include:
Write down the names of schools you’ve attended, the highest level of education you’ve achieved, as well as your degrees and majors. You can also include leadership roles and any relevant clubs or extracurricular activities you’ve participated in while in school.
List down any relevant professional and/or volunteer experience. Include your title or position in the company, as well as the name of your supervisor or employer. Explain how these previous experiences prepared you for volunteer work.
Summarize specific skill sets you think are relevant to the position you’re applying for. This also includes general skills such as work ethic, time management, communication, teamwork, etc. You can also list down technical skills that you can relate to the tasks you’d be performing in said position (i.e. computer programming, data analysis, project management)
Include professional achievements, as well as certificates you’ve earned that demonstrate your accomplishments and skills.
The bottom line of your volunteer application. This is where you write down a statement of gratitude, thanking the recipient for taking their time to consider and read your application.
To cap off your letter, make sure to include a professional sign-off, like “Sincerely,” or “Best regards,” or “Looking forward to hearing from you”. Below this, write down your full name and contact details. If you’re sending out a physical letter, hand-write your signature just below your closing.
Include A Call-to-Action
This can be emphasized anywhere in the body or conclusion of your application letter. Make an offer to help them with their company’s plans or projects. Request a call or meeting, and suggest an availability schedule that’s convenient for you both.
Again, stress how valuable an asset you can be to their company, and restate your interest in the volunteer position. You can also close your letter by saying that you look forward to hearing from the company soon and promise a follow-up letter or email.
Writing a compelling volunteer application doesn’t have to be complicated. Research the organization/charity you’re applying for, set your goals and determine if the opportunity is suitable for you. Keep your volunteer application letter short and simple. For a volunteer application, one page should be more than enough. Using best practices, you’re one stop closer to being part of a worthy cause.
About the writer: After earning her Master’s Degree in Education, Carol Duke has dedicated her life to becoming a lecturer and school supervisor. While her main focus is on teaching modern ways of learning, she also dedicates her time to freelance writing and blogging. Carol loves hiking and mountain-climbing, and dreams of climbing Mt. Everest one day.