When volunteers return from their time at our Dignity Centres we ask them for their feedback on what went well, what might be improved and any other suggestions they have. This generates a lot of insight, as our volunteers tend to be very helpful.
So we employed an AI tool—from an innovative company (Coloop) developing a qualitative research analysis ‘chatbot’—to help to systematically and objectively work through that feedback to tell us the themes returning volunteers raised.*
Apart from confirming something we already knew—that volunteering is an incredibly positive experience—it did a great job of pulling out the main themes.
Many expressed high satisfaction with their volunteering and mentioned enjoying the work, meeting amazing people and feeling a sense of fulfilment:
1. Sense of community and camaraderie: They appreciated the connection and camaraderie with other volunteers. They mentioned that the team of volunteers was supportive, collaborative, and worked well together.
2. Impact and value for volunteers: They highlighted that the volunteering experience was educational and transformative for themselves. They mentioned personal growth, becoming ambassadors for Refugee Support and refugees in general, and gaining a deeper understanding of the refugee situation.
3. Efficient and well-coordinated system: They praised the organisation and efficiency of the system. They mentioned that the system was well-coordinated, with clear processes and a focus on treating members with dignity. They appreciated the opportunity to help and make a difference.
4. Challenges and suggestions for improvement: Some mentioned challenges or areas for improvement. These included issues with communication, the need for more funding to expand services, suggestions for additional services like language classes, and addressing specific incidents of harassment or discomfort.
5. Gratitude and positive feedback from members: They mentioned that the members they interacted with expressed gratitude for the support provided by Refugee Support. They appreciated the opportunity for members to ‘shop’ with dignity and choose their own items.
6. Emotional impact and empathy: They mentioned the emotional intensity of hearing the stories of refugees and the impact it had on them. They expressed empathy and a desire to continue helping and supporting refugees.
Would you like to experience the same? We can guarantee you won’t regret it. You can start the process here. Or if you need any more convincing you can always read volunteers’ own stories here and listen to what they say on our podcast.
*Over 120 volunteers gave us their thoughts in the last year, so we put the text from their comments through the chatbot and asked the analysis system to “Search the transcripts and summarise the main themes in the responses”.