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UBC Theses and Dissertations

Volunteer recruitment and retention: a case study of the Vancouver Planned Parenthood Clinic Parsons, Lisa A.

Abstract

The purpose of this project is to conduct a detailed evaluation of the Vancouver Planned Parenthood clinic volunteer program. The primary focus of this study is volunteer recruitment and retention. The simplicity of individual perspectives commonly employed in volunteer theories and research is rejected in this research project. A multi-leveled sociological analysis stemming from an organizational behaviour framework is used as an alternative approach to broaden the scope of this case study. The five levels of analysis used to examine the volunteer program in this study are: 1) individual level of analysis, 2) group behaviour, 3) interpersonal and organizational processes, 4) organizational structure and job design, and 5) organizational environment. Multiple factors are discussed under each level of analysis. A triangulation of methods, comprised of interviews with volunteers, observational analysis, and document analysis, is used to provide a rich analysis of the volunteer program. Interpretations of the findings demonstrate that many factors beyond the individual level influence volunteer recruitment and retention. Results show that this particular volunteer program is operating below its maximum effectiveness, and that high volunteer turnover results in this atmosphere. Practical and theoretical implications of this case study are explored and recommendations are offered.

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