Interview with Heather Williams, Program Director
The San Antonio African American Community Archive and Museum (SAAACAM) is working in a grassroots effort to uncover the legacy that reaches back to the early days of the Spanish colonists and Texas Republic. SAAACAM is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization formed to collect, maintain, disseminate, and interpret authentic African American artifacts related to San Antonio history in a community-based digital archive.
Volunteers are an integral part of SAAACAM, a dynamic non-profit organization whose mission is to collect and preserve the shared history of African Americans in the San Antonio region. Working with SAAACAM to serve the local community and preserve cultural history is a unique opportunity.
The San Antonio African American Community Archive and Museum (SAAACAM) started out as a grassroots volunteer-based organization. SAAACAM quickly scaled up its operations and programs, which required more support from volunteers. Heather Williams, Program Director, explained that before InitLive, SAAACAM had been managing their volunteers using excel spreadsheets.
SAAACAM chose InitLive's volunteer management solution to help recruit new volunteers, manage interns, and convert their existing members within Salesforce to become volunteers while tracking volunteer hours and engagement for each of their organization's programs.
This solution has allowed SAAACAM to leverage its existing network of members to scale up its operations while recruiting new volunteers from the community.
“We promote volunteers to sign up to help using the InitLive links on our website and newsletters. So, when they go to our website, it does have a volunteer opportunity tab that sends them to the InitLive app to get them signed up in our database,” Commented Heather.
SAAACAM’s volunteers require in-person training before they can work a shift. “For training, volunteers just sign up for in-person training sessions in InitLive, which allows us to track who has completed the training for an opportunity or an event,” commented Heather.
VOLUNTEER SELF-SIGN UP
SAAACAM utilizes InitLive’s sign-up workflow, which allows volunteers to review all of the volunteer opportunities and sign up for the one that works best for them. “People can only really commit to volunteering for a couple of hours at a time, so breaking everything down into shifts that people can sign up for on their own has really helped," explained Heather.
“Our more tech-savvy or comfortable volunteers use the mobile app to sign up for shifts and check-in to shifts when they arrive, which is a great option for them,” commented Heather
“I would definitely recommend using InitLive. We pulled all our members from Salesforce and pushed them into InitLive to convert members into volunteers. Volunteers have the ability to sign up for shifts, check-in and out, and send messages. I have used a number of systems, and I really really enjoy using InitLive,” explained Heather Williams.
“InitLive is a very user-friendly system. Once you get in there and start using it, there is really a lot you can do,” explained Heather Williams.