‘Excellence in Volunteer Engagement’ recipients named

Excellence in Volunteer Engagement event at the Center for Nonprofit Management at Rolling Mill Hill May 12,  2014 in Nashville, Tenn.

Excellence in Volunteer Engagement event at the Center for Nonprofit Management at Rolling Mill Hill May 12, 2014 in Nashville, Tenn. Photo: Metro Photographic Services

Mayor Karl Dean has announced the 42 nonprofit organizations that received a renewal or new certification in the Excellence in Volunteer Engagement (EVE) program, an initiative to recognize high-quality volunteer management by nonprofits and to help increase the number of volunteers in Davidson County. It is the first such certification effort in the nation.

Excellence in Volunteer Engagement was developed in 2011 by the Mayor’s Office, in partnership with Hands On Nashville and the Center for Nonprofit Management, to recognize nonprofit agencies with effective volunteer programs and to encourage other organizations to join them in improving their volunteer opportunities so they can maximize their resources and provide the best quality services possible. Mayor Dean recognized the recipients at an event this morning at the Center for Nonprofit Management at the Trolley Barns.

“The volunteer spirit in our city is what makes Nashville special,” Mayor Dean said. “I appreciate the hard work of these nonprofits to make our city a better place, and I commend them for providing the types of meaningful volunteer experiences that puts the skills of their volunteers to the best use. They deserve our congratulations for achieving certification in the Excellence in Volunteer Engagement program, and I thank Hands On Nashville and the Center for Nonprofit Management for leading the implementation of this significant program.”

Thirty-five of the 42 organizations that achieved certification today were part of the inaugural group to receive EVE certification in 2012, including Fifty Forward, Frist Center for the Visual Arts, Nashville Public Library and Tennessee Voices for Children. Seven organizations are being certified for the first time. Seventy Nashville nonprofits have been certified since the inception of the program.

“Volunteers are invaluable to our community, helping to address critical issues such as hunger, literacy, and homelessness,” said Brian Williams, president/CEO of Hands On Nashville. “Nonprofits that excel in engaging volunteers achieve greater outcomes, amplifying their impact on the community. This group of EVE-certified nonprofits sets the standard for outstanding volunteer management practices.”

A panel of judges representing the community determined which agencies qualified for a two-year certification. Certified organizations showed effectiveness in specific areas of volunteer management, including a defined volunteer program with an identified, dedicated and trained manager, a screening process that aligns volunteers’ skills and abilities with appropriate tasks, orientation for all volunteers and an evaluation process to affirm a volunteer’s impact on the community and agency.

Application is open to all nonprofit agencies in Davidson County with no restrictions on the size or budget of the organization and no application fee. EVE applications are due twice annually, and the next group of certified nonprofits will be announced in the fall. Applications can be found on the Center for Nonprofit Management’s website www.cnm.org or Hands On Nashville’s website www.hon.org

Excellence in Volunteer Engagement is part of the Mayor’s Office ‘Impact Nashville’ initiative, which Mayor Dean launched on Sept. 30, 2010, as part of the national Cities of Service movement.

Impact Nashville directs volunteerism toward two top priorities, public education and the environment. Aligned with the goals of the Cities of Service national coalition, Impact Nashville strives to improve the impact of volunteerism across our city in four areas: the impact for those being served, the impact for the volunteer, the impact on the agency’s mission and the impact on our community.

The 42 nonprofits certified for Excellence in Volunteer Engagement include the following (organizations noted with an asterisk are first-time recipients of EVE certification; all others were certified in 2012 and received renewal certification):
• Alive Hospice Inc.
• American Red Cross
• Arts & Business Council of Greater Nashville
• Book’em
• CASA Inc., of Davidson County
• Cheekwood Botanical Garden and Museum of Art
• Christian Women’s Job Corps of Middle Tennessee
• Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum
• FiftyForward
• Friends Life Community
• Friends of Warner Parks
• Frist Center for the Visual Arts
• Habitat for Humanity of Greater Nashville
• Interfaith Dental Clinic
• Junior Achievement of Middle Tennessee Inc.*
• Martha O’Bryan Center
• Nashville Adult Literacy Council
• Nashville CARES
• Nashville International Center for Empowerment*
• Nashville Public Library
• Nashville Zoo at Grassmere*
• PENCIL Foundation
• Project Reflect*
• Room In The Inn
• Safe Haven Family Shelter
• Salvation Army-Nashville
• Scarritt-Bennett Center*
• Second Harvest Food Bank of Middle Tennessee
• Siloam Family Health Center
• St. Luke’s Community House
• Susan G. Komen for the Cure Greater Nashville
• Ten Thousand Villages
• Tennessee Performing Arts Center
• Tennessee Voices for Children
• The Nashville Food Project
• The Next Door
• Thriftsmart
• W.O. Smith Music School
• Your Heart On Art*
• Youth Encouragement Services
• Youth Villages*
• YWCA of Nashville and Middle Tennessee