Wed 3 May 2006
1.) OIC’s mission is “To deliver education and training that enhances continuous personal growth and workforce development while maximizing community collaboration and sustained financial support”. OIC is working to help individuals as well as the community of Carlisle. Their slogan is “Skill-up our workforce” meaning in order to help the workforce, OIC works with individuals to increase their knowledge and skills. To meet these needs OIC has numerous programs to help. Some of these programs include tutoring (languages and math), training for the GED, ESOL (English for Speakers of Other Languages), and literacy skills. OIC trains employers as well to enhance productivity, reduce errors, improve safety performance, and provide value. OIC also provides support services for the homeless enabling them with basic life skills, employment readiness, and computer training. OIC has volunteers to drive people to appointments, hospitals, or any other place they may need to go. OIC works with people of all ages, gender, race, and employers in Carlisle to improve the community.
2.) My task at OIC was to create a volunteer program that included the program scopes & goals, job descriptions, recruitment plan, training plan (including orientation and a description of the organization), coordination/management/tracking/reporting (tracking the number of hours), and recognition. I worked with Alla to complete this task. At first we felt this would not be very time consuming and could be done easily. However, after learning more about OIC, trying to contact people who worked at OIC and other non-profits in Carlisle, and doing research, we realized our initial thoughts were incorrect. We were able to create a volunteer program that we feel will drastically improve the volunteer system at OIC. We based our program off the volunteer management theory which is a circle consisting of planning, recruitment, orientation/training, supervision/evaluation, and recognition. This diagram shows the volunteer process never ends, but keeps going and going in a circle as long as the non-profit is running. One of the first tasks we completed was creating a list of job descriptions that was used shortly after it was made at a volunteer fair in Carlisle. We also included information about the interview process and firing volunteers.
3.) The most successful way of learning is through hands on experience. Working with the volunteers and employees of OIC I was able to relate a lot of concepts we learned in class to OIC. I saw many problems at OIC that we had learned about in class. From what I saw at OIC, it does not seem their marketing is where it should be. They do market, however, not very well. They seem to have trouble recruiting volunteers, which should be helped through their new volunteer program. OIC needs to market more to the Carlisle community and promote their services. I feel many more people would volunteer if they knew exactly how OIC helps people. OIC has a great cause that in the end benefits the entire community, which is why people should want to volunteer at OIC. OIC has an ideal location in Carlisle, making it easy for volunteer or participants to get to OIC. I also think OIC should improve their accountability and how they evaluate the organization. Alla and I designed a spreadsheet to keep track of volunteers and how much they work, allowing them to evaluate their volunteers better. Overall, working with OIC was an interesting experience because I was able to directly relate what we learned about non-profits in class to an actual non-profit in Carlisle.