Q: How do I get people to volunteer for my Ragnar Relay team?
A: We rely on the support from volunteers, SWAT and local communities to makes Ragnar events run smoothly. Providing volunteers keeps the cost of running a Ragnar Relay down for your team. As a team captain, you are responsible for finding runners, budgeting, and booking vans, and recruiting 3 awesome volunteers by the volunteer deadline. Well captains, here is a list of ideas to sweet talk your friends, coworkers, and acquaintances into volunteering.
- Get their foot in the door: Suppose your friend has been living under a rock and this whole running a 200-mile(ish) relay thing is a foreign concept to him or her. Explain that volunteering at a Ragnar Relay is one of the best ways to find out what it’s all about. They’ll get a behind-the-scenes look at the race to see how it really works.
- Make them a part of the team: Having been a volunteer the previous year, when I captained my first Wasatch Back team I knew just how important our volunteers were. When Van 1 was done, we met our volunteers at a restaurant in Park City to grab some grub and relax before heading to the Finish Line Party. Everyone is part of the team with a beer in their hand, so be sure to include your volunteers in your fun post-race plans!
- Earn money for charity: When I first volunteered for Ragnar, I was also raising money for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society (LLS). Instead of paying the volunteer fee, the team made a donation to the LLS in exchange for my volunteering for them. Find that do-gooder in your office and see if he or she will step up for a charity. Talk about putting the FUN in fundraising.
- They’re actually what makes the race go ‘round: There’s no way around it – without volunteers, Ragnar Relays wouldn’t be possible. Whether they’re handing out water on non-support legs, directing traffic, or checking in runners, they make a huge difference in the coordination of the race, which can be a rewarding feeling.
- They get a sweet shirt: Hello, doesn’t everyone want some cool Ragnar gear?!
- IT’S FUN: Ask your cousin this question when trying to persuade them to volunteer: Where else can you get out in the sunshine and make hilarious signs to motivate runners?
- Pay for Volunteers: Paying for volunteers is an option available for teams. They money is costs to pay for volunteers is donated to the race’s charity, so you can consider it a charitable contribution for a good cause!
What other ways have you found to entice volunteers? Leave us a comment below!