How nonprofits can respond to Coronavirus (COVID-19)


Activate Supporters: Inspire People to Lead

Passionate followers can become strong advocates for the work your organization does. Find ways to inspire people who care deeply about your cause and give them opportunities to lead on your behalf, both online and offline.

Offer Regular Opportunities. Create a pattern of volunteer opportunities supporters can count on. A regular schedule makes it easier for people to build activities into their routine. You can use events on Facebook to create a volunteer calendar directly on your Page. You can also post a request for volunteers to respond in the comments if they’re available, which will help you gauge interest.

Show People What To Expect. Many people have a cause they care about, but don’t know how to help. Explain specific ways people can support your organization by outlining what you need and what they can do. Tell people about the kinds of tasks you need and how much time and effort is required so people can get a feel for what volunteering for your organization is like.

TIP: When planning, consider creating volunteer activities for pairs or groups. This makes it easier for people to invite a friend, which grows your network and encourages people to show up.

Engage People Locally. Facebook helps people learn about activities happening in their local area. If your work has a geographic focus, you can search key words on Facebook to find other people, businesses and groups in your area that may be passionate about your cause. For example, you can search for “clean water in Seattle” to find communities focused on clean water. Filter your search results by people, Pages, places, groups, events and more using the tabs at the top of the search results, then reach out about support or collaboration.

Engage your Strongest Supporters

Make Individual Requests. People are much more likely to respond to personal requests than general calls to action. Tag people who have participated in your activities in the past, or reach out to them on Messenger or by email or phone. Make it clear that you’re reaching out personally to get them involved.

Start an Ambassador Program. To give people an incentive to take extra steps to support your organization, consider creating a group with members who receive special messages, swag and recognition. You may also want to host events so ambassadors can meet and learn from each other.

Plan a Variety of Activities. Create opportunities for people to get involved at various levels of complexity and commitment depending on their interest and availability. For example, some activities might be done in an afternoon or over a weekend, like a community cleanup. Others might take many months, like fundraising or training for a race. Offering more options will give more people a chance to participate.

Provide Action Kits. Invite supporters to coordinate an event or activity on your organization’s behalf. To help manage your brand and reputation, provide action kits that supporters can use to make sure their activities are aligned with your goals. Include things someone would need to host an activity, like t-shirt graphics, printable brochures, promotional posters, gifts and more. Include instructions that explain how to use your action kit to create impact.

If cost of creating and shipping physical items is a concern, consider creating a digital action kit. You can use a file sharing service to upload resources and share the link on your organization’s Page or event.

Follow Up

Express Thanks. Personally thank people for their time and contributions. Encourage your leadership team to take time to thank top supporters with hand written cards, phone calls or emails. Create a thank you graphic that you can share on your Page to celebrate your supporters.

Celebrate People’s Work. Post photos and video that highlight your supporters’ hard work on your organization’s Page. Tag people when you can and ask people to tag other friends who joined in or supported them. If you have the resources, make videos that recap your events and remind people about your mission and how they can continue to help.