State launches new website to support nonprofits

FRANKFORT, Ky. — Gov. Andy Beshear and Kentucky Cabinet for Health and Family Services (CHFS) Cabinet Secretary Eric Friedlander announced Thursday many nonprofits now have free access to the state’s new volunteer recruitment and management website, Volunteer Kentucky.

The new website, through Serve Kentucky, a CHFS agency, aims to provide efficient volunteer recruitment and management system, facilitating Kentuckians’ search for, and response to service opportunities within their communities. The site will also help better track volunteerism in Kentucky.

“Kentuckians are generous people and are always stepping up to give back and help one another in a safe way during these unprecedented times,” Beshear said. “Through this new platform, more of our nonprofits have the ability to recruit new volunteers to help support many worthy causes.”

Friedlander said nonprofits are major partners in his cabinet’s work to uplift vulnerable families.

“The value of a volunteer’s time is more than just monetary, it’s the foundation of engagement between groups to fulfill a community need,” he said. “We’re really proud of Serve Kentucky’s volunteer management platform, because it allows for nonprofits to develop a more collaborative, motivated volunteer network so they can spend more time doing good rather than doing administrative work.”

Use of the site is available to 501(c)3 nonprofits, government entities, schools, faith-based organizations and neighborhood associations recognized as such by the applicable city or county. So far, the site lists 35 such agencies with about 50 opportunities — many for multiple volunteers. Serve Kentucky foresees the site growing with multiple volunteer prospects as more groups become aware of and join the network.

Serve Kentucky Executive Director Joe Bringardner said Kentucky’s nonprofit sector provides invaluable services to our communities, oftentimes on a shoestring budget.

“With the economic impacts of COVID-19, those budgets are bound to shrink even more,” he said. “We are very excited to be able to offer this powerful volunteer management tool to our amazing Kentucky nonprofits at no cost so they have one less budget item to worry about and one more tool to cultivate their most important asset: their volunteers.”

During the COVID-19 emergency, Serve Kentucky administrators and members have supported Kentucky nonprofits by advising schools and family resource centers how to engage and manage volunteers, standing up food pantries, and helping to strengthen communities and their vulnerable citizens by leveraging support for both AmeriCorps programs and local groups to provide a bridge to services disrupted by the pandemic.

About supporting nonprofits

Click here to create your agency profile on Volunteer Kentucky. For help, troubleshooting, or questions, contact Serve Kentucky at [email protected] or review the FAQ webpage.

Volunteers’ personal health and safety are always of primary importance. Serve Kentucky requests all agencies and nonprofits to follow CDC recommendations for age limits, health status and social interaction when recruiting and engaging volunteers. For the latest information and data on COVID-19 in Kentucky visit kycovid19.ky.gov or call the Kentucky COVID-19 hotline at 1-800-722-5725.

Serve Kentucky works to engage Kentuckians in volunteerism and service to positively impact our communities by providing training and support to nonprofits and working to connect Kentuckians to local volunteer opportunities. Serve Kentucky also administers 22 AmeriCorps programs with more than $7.4 million in federal grant funds.