Frequently Asked Questions
Q: I don't live in an area where there are a lot of Lakers. Can I volunteer in the name of Grand Valley on my own?
A: Absolutely! Any project, no matter how big or small makes an impact. We ask that your project be coordinated between March 24-31, 2018 in order to be considered a Community Outreach Week project. Create an individual project.
Q: The project I want to register for has been closed. How do I sign up last minute?
A: E-mail firstname.lastname@example.org or call 616-331-3590 to sign up for closed projects.
Q: I have a question about my project, and the agency I am volunteering for, who do I contact?
A: E-mail email@example.com or call 616-331-3590 and a Community Outreach Week representative will get back with you within one business day.
Q: I need to cancel my attendance at a service project. Who do I contact?
A: E-mail firstname.lastname@example.org or call 616-331-3590 at least 5 days before the scheduled project date to let a Community Outreach Week representative know of your cancellation.
Q: My student organization, alumni club/chapter, work employees want to sign up for a private project. What do I do?
A: If the project has already been established, contact your group's leader to receive a special URL to sign up. If you are the group leader for the project, you’ll need to register first. Click “Create a Project.” Be sure and indicate what group or company you're working with, and click "yes" when asked "is this event private?"
Project Leader Specific
Q: What is a project leader?
A: A project leader is the point person between volunteers and the project location or non-profit organization. The project leader registers the volunteer project with all important details at http://www.gvsu.edu/cow/create.htm and makes sure the agency is ready for volunteers. The GVSU Alumni Association and the Community Service Learning Center serve as the promoters and sponsors of the projects, but are not responsible for recruiting volunteers for all projects.
Q: I'm not sure where to start, who can help me?
A: Check out our Resources page for tips on getting your project started.
Q: Once I register my project, do I also need to go back in and sign up?
A: No, when you register a new group project, you are automatically added into the count of volunteers. You do not need to additionally add yourself, but any of your guests will need to sign up separately.
Q: What happens if a site leader needs to announce changes or a cancellation to a group project?
A: Upon request, or one week prior to your project, the site leader will receive an email with all volunteers registered for the project. The site leader is responsible for communicating any changes in location, time, etc to the volunteers, as well as thinking back-up plan for inclement weather. March is often unpredictable, so it is recommended that you discuss a couple of options with your non-profit.
Q: What happens if no one signs up for the volunteer project I am leading?
A: If there is low or no participation for the project one week prior to the project's date, you will receive an email notifying you of the low attendance. At that time you will be able to email your group and let them know whether the project is still happening.
Q: What resources do I get as a site leader?
A: A few days before your project you will receive by email a roster of your volunteers, talking points for your group and other pertinent information to make sure your event is a success!
Q: How soon should volunteers register?
A: Project spaces are limited and available on a first come, first serve basis. The deadline for volunteers to sign up for a project is March 16.
Q: What if there are walk-ins the day of the project?
A: It is the site leader's/Non-profit's discretion as to whether the volunteer is eligible to participate. If they are able to participate, be sure to record their information on the walk in sheet.
Q: What do I do after my project is over?
- Fill out a Project Recap Form and be sure and submit lots of photos for a chance to win prizes.
- Email the roster of who showed up and who did not back to email@example.com
- Send a thank you message to your group of volunteers.
- Share your photos and experience on social media using #GVcow
Q: Can my student organization volunteer?
A: Yes! Student organizations are encouraged to organize projects. For information on how to register your Community Outreach Week project, check out the resources page. Student organizations are encouraged to contact the Community Service Learning Center for additional help and resources.
Q: I am a student who wants to volunteer on my own or with some friends. What do we do?
A: Check out the service project opportunities on the Join a Project page. You can look for projects that are open to students or open to anyone. Any project listed that starts with “CSLC” is hosted by the Community Service Learning Center and has other students involved and includes transportation.
Q: Are there additional resources for students or student organizations?
A: Students and student organizations are encouraged to contact the Community Service Learning Center with questions, for additional resources, and help.
Q: Are Community Outreach Week projects LIB 100 approved?
A: Yes! All projects during this week are LIB 100 approved.