If you look up the word “volunteer” in the dictionary, the definition reads: “a person who freely offers to take part in an enterprise or undertake a task” and, more explicitly, “a person who performs a service willingly and without pay.” Without pay: Now that sounds like a chamber position!
People choose to volunteer for a variety of reasons. For some, it offers the chance to give back to the community or make a difference. For others, it provides an opportunity to develop a new skill set or build on existing experience.
As many of you may be aware, the chamber depends upon our volunteers every day! And our current group helps us out more than they know. When you walk into the chamber, you’ll notice three desks. One for me, one for Sherell and one for that shift’s volunteer. We consider ourselves a staff of three.
But some days, due to outside appointments, family obligations or trips out of town, our staff of three dwindles down to two or one. That’s where YOU could come in. We really rely on that staff of three. Our days are structured around those three desks working together.
While our volunteers get to take time off whenever they need it, we need backup players. Here’s what the chamber is looking for in a volunteer: answering phones and dealing with walk-ins are the two biggest tasks. And along with those calls and walk-in visitors comes a lot of question answering. We’ll provide you with the tools you need and lists and lists of phone numbers to the seemingly endless resources around town, but a lot of the answers are just common sense.
As a volunteer, you are also part of a referral center for residents who call or come in looking for plumbers, hearing aid companies, financial planners – you name it. And you’ll find many of the answers in our chamber Membership Directory.
As I always say, “Just Ask The Chamber.”
If you have a skill set from a previous job or other volunteer position, we’ll put that to good use, as well. Volunteer shifts are for 3 ½ hours, from 9 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. and 12:30 to 4 p.m., Monday through Friday. If you think you have what it takes, give Sherell a call at 813-634-5111. I hope you’ll consider becoming one of the team. Our volunteers — we cannot function without them.
Lynne Conlan is executive director of the South Hillsborough Chamber of Commerce. Call her at 813-634-5111, or email firstname.lastname@example.org/.