Thursday, January 14, 2010

The Skinny on Disney’s “Give a Day. Get a Disney Day” Promotion (For Hands On Nonprofit Partners)

The Disney promotion has the potential to bring wide-spread volunteer attention to your organization from a pool of volunteers who may not otherwise find you. We have seen an enormous spike in the number of volunteers signing up and expressing interest in opportunities since the Disney promotion went live, and we’ve heard ample positive feedback from nonprofit partners who have been connected to dozens of new volunteers. That said, “opting in” to the program can take a bit of work and the system can be somewhat frustrating to navigate. Depending on your involvement with Hands On and your interest in taking part in the Disney program, Disney promotion may (or may not) play out for you in a number of ways.

How does this affect my organization? How do we get involved?
  • If you don’t have volunteer opportunities open to those under 18, the Disney promotion will most likely not affect you. The focus is on getting exposure for “family friendly” volunteer opportunities (which includes opportunities that might be 16+).
  • For those of you who post regular Calendar projects through us which are open to those under 18 (whether all ages, 12+, 16+, etc.), those projects may have already been “fed” to the Disney site for volunteers to find and sign up (though we will not be feeding every project to the Disney site from here on out). Project sign-up through the Disney portal translates as volunteer slots being filled in our database; once the project has reached its maximum, no further volunteers will be allowed to sign up. Once volunteers have attended the project, the verification of Disney volunteer hours falls on Hands On and our volunteer leaders, who must confirm volunteer attendance at projects within 2 days of the project date. That said, if you are serving a dual role as both the agency contact and the volunteer leader for a Hands On Calendar project, we need to receive your project attendance logs for these projects within 24 hours of that project’s completion in order to verify attendance through the Disney portal!
  • For those of you who post referral opportunities through us that are open to those under 18 (again, this could mean all ages or 16+), your opportunities are not automatically “fed” to the Disney website UNLESS you “opt in” and sign yourself up as a Disney verifying organization. As a Hands On partner, the referrals you post through our admin site will then feed to the site for volunteers to find and express interest in. It will be then be YOUR responsibility to “verify” the Disney volunteers’ participation in the opportunity within a couple days of the chosen date of service.
If you are interested in learning more about the Disney promotion and/or becoming a verifying member, please check out the Disney Nonprofit FAQ, posted by the national Hands On Network. You can sign up as a verifying organization here, but we recommend doing so only after glancing through the FAQ. Please note that Hands On Greater Portland is only able to manage volunteer opportunities on our own database – we cannot control anything via the Disney portal, or through the Hands On Network database. If you have difficulties signing up as a verifying organization or have questions about that database, you’ll need to contact the Hands On Network support team.

Important information to pass along to your volunteers:

If your organization is part of the Disney promotion, volunteers MUST sign up or express interest for volunteer opportunities through the Disney Volunteer Portal. They will not be eligible to receive a pass if they don’t go through this website. Once their attendance at a volunteer opportunity has been verified, Disney will email volunteers their pass within two weeks of their volunteering. Neither your organization nor Hands On Greater Portland are involved in this process and we cannot expedite that process.

Background on the Disney Promotion: 

On January 1, 2010, Disney kicked off its national “Give a Day. Get a Disney Day” promotion, which aims to “inspire one million people to volunteer a day of service to a participating organization in their communities.” In exchange for a day of service, volunteers receive a voucher for one free day pass to either Disneyland or Disney World. The promotion is focused on family-friendly volunteer opportunities and is cosponsored by the Hands On Network (our umbrella organization). The kick off was focused around MLK Weekend, although the promotion is set up to last through the coming months.

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