A new digital marketplace is now live, which connects professionals keen to donate their skills and not for profits needing their expertise.
The Who Did You Help Today Trust developed HelpTank so not for profits can get the specialist help they need pro-bono, when they need it. This is the first nationwide specialist service to focus on a skills-based volunteer approach.
Trust founder Stacey Shortall said their research showed community groups often struggled to engage skilled volunteers. Volunteers reported it challenging to connect with an organisation needing their area of expertise. Employers offering paid volunteer leave generally have low uptake of their programme.
“There are good local and sector-specific volunteering services within New Zealand but there is an identified gap around specialist skills. Not for profits deliver vital services that strengthen communities socially, economically and environmentally, so it’s important they can efficiently access a full suite of skills to maximise their impact,” Stacey says.
The HelpTank platform has been built with significant financial support from Z Energy and following a pilot involving thirty not for profits and volunteers from NZ Post, Z, Spark and Westpac.
We want to hear from community groups needing specialist skills pro bono and work to match them with the volunteers we’ll be bringing onto the site in coming weeks.
Our initial focus as we launch is mobilising staff with paid volunteering leave as we grow the supply of specialist skills the community sector seeks, but the platform is available to all New Zealanders who wish to use their professional skills pro bono. In coming months, we will increase HelpTank’s reach and impact as we scale up.