March 2016 VANtage

Written by Nick Linkenhoker on . Posted in Home Page

President’s Message

VAN Members,

Many of us underestimate the power of networking, yet the benefits of maintaining a strong network for your professional growth are seemingly endless. Are you tapping into the power of our VAN network and utilizing it to help you succeed in your work? Networking isn’t just small talk, it’s about creating a circle of people that can provide you with:

Resources – Let’s face it, in our work there is just more to do than we can accomplish alone. Don’t reinvent the wheel when there are great resources at your fingertips through your VAN colleagues. VAN is overflowing with talented people who have done some great work and have the tools and templates available for you to use, if you just ask.
Support – You are likely to be faced with challenges and obstacles that many of your peers have also faced during their career. Call on your professional contacts and create open lines of communication to discuss those challenges and how you can overcome them.
Opportunities – While you may not be actively looking to change jobs having a vast network at your fingertips is always a good thing. Aside from employment, a strong network will also offer you opportunities to explore various volunteer roles, interests or even new industry-related trends.
Growth – Whether you are new to the world of Volunteer Administration or a veteran who has seen it all you will always need to grow, adapt and change with time. A strong network will ensure that your professional growth never stalls.
If you need a push to get your network started or make it stronger (that is ALL of us!) then join us for our upcoming Speed Networking Session on March 17 at Girl Scouts of Ohio’s Heartland. You won’t regret it.

Melanie Murphy, CVA
VAN Central Ohio President

March VAN Meeting

In 2016 VAN is focusing on the importance of mentorship. As a professional in the volunteer management field, everyone needs a mentor. Your mentor could be a peer who has accomplished what you want to do next. It could be a peer who is going to help keep you on track as you head toward your next goal. It could be someone who can simply point you to resources that you need to help grow your career.One of the best ways to discover which VAN members have the skills you’re seeking is to sit down and talk about what’s going on in your career. Our March meeting is your opportunity to do just that. Speed networking allows you to pick someone’s brain for just a couple of minutes, then move to the next person to see what they know. The goal of the meeting is to talk to as many people as possible to find out who can help you in your career.

  • Need to find new tracking software? Ask about it.
  • Need to find a great development program? Find out what everyone else knows.
  • Want to know how to grow your program? Talk to someone who has done it.

The VAN membership is made of 60 strong professionals, all serving different populations, performing different tasks, with different talents and strengths. During this meeting you will talk to someone who can help us gain the knowledge and skills to get to the next level.

Where: Girl Scout of Ohio’s Heartland Council, 1700 Watermark Drive, Columbus, 43215
When: March 17 (yes, St. Patrick’s Day!) from 8:30 – 10:30 a.m.

NOTE: It is important that everyone, especially senior VAN members attend, so that there is a true sharing of knowledge. Come and share your expertise!

VAN Bylaws Update

A BIG THANK YOU! to everyone that joined us at the February VAN meeting and voted to approve the new VAN Bylaws.

Professional Development

Take Your Professional Development to the Next Level!

One of the best ways to gain expertise in the Volunteer Management profession is to join the national network of professionals at the National Conference on Volunteering and Service hosted by the Points of Light Foundation. This year’s annual conference will be held in Detroit, Michigan from June 27-29.

Click here to learn more!

Save money on transportation costs by joining the VAN carpool for this important event. VAN will host transportation to and from the conference for all members interested in carpooling.

If you budgeted for the conference and would like to save money on transportation, email Sue Wolford at and let her know. Costs for the trip will depend on the number of people who join us.

News and Resources

ServeOhio Awards

ServeOhio is seeking nominations for outstanding people, initiatives, and groups who make great contributions to their local communities and the state through service and volunteerism. During National Volunteer Week, April 10-16, 2016, the ServeOhio Awards will recognize a volunteer, service group, corporate group, or volunteer initiative in each of the 5 regions of the state. A cash award of $1,000 will be issued to support the organization which benefited from the winner’s service.
Nominate a volunteer today:

Don’t forget to renew your membership!

VAN Members have access to training from industry experts, free access to the Volunteer Administration Skill Building Program “Everyone Ready”, a 20% discount on all industry-related books purchased through the website, and an opportunity to network with your peers in the field of Volunteer Administration.

To renew, please visit the VAN website. Be sure to log in to your account before beginning the renewal process. Email if you encounter any issues while renewing.

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