“Flash Volunteer is powered by volunteers, for volunteers.” – Holly Wyrwich, Flash Volunteer board member
Flash Volunteer, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit based in Seattle, connects interested volunteers with opportunities and community through their online and mobile platforms. Not only can groups and individuals post their own events, but many are cross-listed from VolunteerMatch to spread awareness.
Their company model is business to consumers and businesses, where their target users include both potential volunteers and non-profits. Volunteers are tech-savvy early adopters, ages 18-35, with enough time and interest in volunteering, but who maybe can’t commit to a weekly or monthly project. They’re interested in volunteering when they have a free moment, and might have several volunteering interests, from trail work to education. Target non-profit users include small and/or young 501(c)(3) companies in the Seattle metro region with interest in reach these potential volunteers and not enough time or funding to successfully market every event on their own. These nonprofits can reap the benefits of using an existing, known platform rather than building from scratch and gaining access to already interested volunteers.
Their user approach differs between the online portion of the site, which is more about letting users announce and attend events, and the staff’s skills. Flash Volunteer sees its own strength in volunteer engagement, raising awareness and interest at a scale otherwise challenging for young and small non-profits. While they are similar to VolunteerMatch in terms of recruiting volunteers, Flash Volunteer’s site is built for mobile use for reaching volunteers on the fly, while VolunteerMatch has a larger database on a site built for traditional web. With the two are already working together towards their common goals of reaching multiple audiences, hopefully they can build one amazing way to reinvigorate local volunteerism.
While they’re currently focused on the Seattle area, I hope they can expand and scale to work with nonprofits throughout the Pacific Northwest. The ability to connect with others while doing good is incredibly powerful, and nonprofits can always use more volunteers.