A Service Enterprise is an organization that fundamentally leverages volunteers and their skills across all levels of the organization to successfully deliver on its social mission.
Less than 15% of organizations nationwide can be characterized as Service Enterprises. Nonprofits that operate as Service Enterprises more effectively address community needs and run on almost half the median budget than those nonprofits that do not leverage volunteers across all levels of their organization. When an organization leverages volunteers, managing them effectively, it is in a better position to grow.
Applications are now being accepted to participate in the Service Enterprise Program at hubs across the state. Through a multi-month engagement with Volunteer Iowa or local participating hub, your nonprofit organization will move through a change management process that will result in more effectively leveraging the time and talents of volunteers and lead to greater impact.
To learn more about becoming a Service Enterprise or to request an application, e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
Check out the Service Enterprise Initiative overview video!
AL!VE (Association of Leaders in Volunteer Engagement), in partnership with Points of Light, is leading Service Enterprise nationally and is working closely with hub organizations across the country to boost the number of certified Service Enterprises. These hubs offer extensive training and consulting to nonprofits that want to deepen their thinking and practices on volunteer engagement.
There are three Service Enterprise hubs in Iowa. In addition to serving as a hub, each of these organizations is also a certified Service Enterprise:
- United Way of Wapello County (224 2nd St E, Ottumwa, IA 52501)
- Volunteer Center of Cedar Valley (360 Westfield Ave, Ste 300C, Waterloo, IA 50701)
- Volunteer Iowa (1963 Bell Avenue, Suite 200, Des Moines, IA 50315)
The following Iowa organizations have received Service Enterprise certification:
- Aging Services, Inc., Cedar Rapids
- ALS Iowa Chapter, statewide
- Alzheimer's Association Greater Iowa Chapter, statewide
- Animal Rescue League of Iowa, Des Moines
- Black Hawk County Conservation, Waterloo
- Blank Park Zoo, Des Moines
- Boys & Girls Clubs of Central Iowa, Des Moines
- Care Initiatives Hospice, Cedar Falls
- Catherine McAuley Center, Cedar Rapids
- Cedar Rapids Public Library, Cedar Rapids
- Cedar Valley Arboretum & Botanic Gardens, Waterloo
- Cedar Valley Friends of the Family, Waverly, Waterloo, Cedar Rapids, Dubuque, Decorah
- Cedar Valley Preschool and Child Care Center, Cedar Falls
- Central Iowa RSVP, Story City
- Central Iowa Shelter & Services, Des Moines
- EMBARC, Des Moines, Waterloo
- EveryStep Grief and Loss Services, Home of Amanda the Panda, West Des Moines
- Food Bank of Iowa, Des Moines
- Greater Des Moines Botanical Garden, Des Moines
- Greater Des Moines Habitat for Humanity, Des Moines
- HACAP, Hiawatha
- Hawkeye Community College Van G Miller Adult Learning Center, Waterloo
- His Hands Free Clinic, Cedar Rapids
- Iowa Child Advocacy Board, statewide
- Iowa Department for the Blind, Des Moines
- Iowa Natural Heritage Foundation, statewide
- Iowa State University Extension and Outreach-Black Hawk County, Waterloo
- Iowa State University Reiman Gardens, Ames
- Lutheran Services in Iowa, Statewide
- Meals from the Heartland, West Des Moines
- Northeast Iowa Food Bank, Waterloo
- Northeast Iowa RSVP 55+ Initiative, Decorah
- Riverview Center, Dubuque
- RSVP Program of Boone, Greene and Guthrie Counties, Boone and Jefferson
- Science Center of Iowa, Des Moines
- Story County Conservation, Ames
- Tanager Place, Cedar Rapids
- The ARC of East Central Iowa, Cedar Rapids
- The Job Foundation, Cedar Falls
- United Way of East Central Iowa, Cedar Rapids
- United Way of Wapello County, Ottumwa
- Volunteer Center of Cedar Valley, Waterloo
- Volunteer Center of Story County, Ames
- Volunteer Iowa, Des Moines
- Waterloo Schools Foundation, Waterloo
- Waypoint, Cedar Rapids
- Whiterock Conservancy, Coon Rapids
- Winneshiek County Conservation, Fort Atkinson
- Young Parents Network, Cedar Rapids
- YSS, Ames
Service Enterprises require strong and well-developed human resource management practices. For every $1 an organization invests in effective volunteer engagement, they can expect $3-$6 in return.
When an organization leverages volunteers and achieves an effective volunteer management model, not only do they lead and manage their organizations better, but they are also significantly more adaptable, sustainable and better resourced to do their work.
To view the list of all Service Enterprises in the nation, visit the AL!VE website.
Hear what recent Service Enterprise participants had to say about the process (produced by volunteer intern Madi Wilson):