Volunteer Instructions

Volunteer instructions should be clear and detailed, but not too overwhelming. Once you have your volunteers finalized, email the instructions for each person in every role a few days before the event, with a reminder of positions and shifts. Do it in batches to save time (for instance, if you have 10 people doing setup and 4 people greeting, send one email with setup instructions to all 10 setup volunteers and one email with greeting instructions to the 4 greeters, and so on).

Be sure the volunteer leaders are well-informed of these instructions and have copies of them for the day of the event. Volunteers may skim the instructions in the email, but the leaders will be the ones delegating tasks to each person in their role.

Here’s an example of volunteer instructions from the 2013 Twin Cities Veg Fest:

Bag Stuffing

  • Stuff 1,000 bags (we have more). If there’s not enough of any given item, put those bags aside separately โ€” we want the folks who come first to get more stuff.
  • Use assembly-style, i.e. each person gets one specific task. It goes faster that way.

U-Haul Loading

  • Meet at 7:30pm Friday, Oct. 25, at the CAA community office, 2100 1st Ave S, Minneapolis
  • Carry designated equipment and supplies from the community office to the U-Haul truck

Set-up

The chairs and tables will already be in place when we arrive.

  • Check in with Liz in the Great Hall of Coffman Memorial Union
  • Report to Shannon or Dave by 8:00am, as they will be in charge of set-up/layout of the event
  • Unload the U-Haul on the west side of Coffman Union, 300 Washington Ave SE, Minneapolis.
  • Unload supplies, bringing everything to the Great Hall in Coffman
  • Repeat trips as necessary
  • 8:00am – put up signs in the East River Road ramp
    • should include directions to Veg Fest
  • 8:00am – put up signs around Coffman
    • on easels and other appropriate places
    • signs outside Great Hall
    • signs outside Kids Area (303) and speaker room (Mississippi)
    • other signs around the venue with directions at entrances to the building
      • Entrances to Coffman
      • Next to escalators and elevators/stairs
  • 8:00am -wash CAA dishes, serving ware, jugs, etc.
  • 9:30 am – create compost and trash signs based on what exhibitors bring.
    • Collect sample compostable items from all exhibitors
    • Attach compostable items to the signs
    • Attach them to the compost and trash bins, one per compost bin (4 total)
  • Put tablecloths on tables
  • Put signs for each exhibitor on the right table
  • Welcome exhibitors, help them find their tables, and transport their supplies. Provide them anything they need, e.g. water, directions to the bathroom.
  • Relay questions that the exhibitors have to your shift leader and/or the Veg Fest planners.
  • Help arrange CAA Table, Veg Fest Table and Food Giveaway Table with our signs, advertising materials, give-aways, etc.
    • start a large pot of marinara in a crock pot at 9 am for the Tofurky
  • Help set up PPV table next to CAA table
  • Set up seating, podium, etc. for speaker room (Mississippi Room)
  • Place the 8 compost bins. One goes next to a CAA food giveaway table, and others near the food vendors or (if the food vendors are next to each other) spread around the room conveniently.

Speaker Monitors and Tech Support

  • Check in with Liz at the Veg Fest Table in the Great Hall of Coffman Memorial Union
  • Arrive at the speaker room at least 10 minutes before each presentation (first one starts at 10:30am, each is 50 minutes long and starts every hour after 10:30am, the last beginning at 2:30pm)
  • Speaker Monitors
    • provide water for speakers as needed and refill between presentations
    • Monitor time and show 15, 10 and 5 minute cards
    • Keep track of how many people attend each presentation
    • Stay in the back of the room during the entire presentation and be available for questions (or direct unknown questions to the Veg Fest/CAA Tables)
    • Carry donation envelopes and collect donations from attendees, as needed (the speaker or the person introducing them will solicit donations)
    • Return donations to somebody at the Veg Fest table
    • Usher attendees – help get them seated, open/close doors as needed, answer their questions
  • Tech Support
    • help with presentation set up as needed
    • be on call for technical difficulties as they arise (this will mostly be for the speakers)

Concert Helpers

  • Check in with Liz at the Veg Fest Table in the Great Hall of Coffman Memorial Union
  • Report to Jake, the concert coordinator, in The Whole at Coffman
  • Help musicians carry equipment on and off stage as necessary
  • Help with stage setup before the first performer and between sets
  • Clear the stage of all equipment, wires, etc after the last musician
  • Show musicians where their water is located and explain that food is upstairs in the Great Hall

Maintenance

  • Check in with Liz at the Veg Fest Table in the Great Hall of Coffman Memorial Union
  • Report to your volunteer leader (Liz will identify) who is in charge of Maintenance for the event
  • Volunteer leader will point out where to take out trash, where empty trash bags are, where to place empty water jugs, and where full water jugs can be found
  • Volunteer leader will station volunteers throughout the Great Hall
  • Once every hour or so, wipe down the tables in the Great Hall that people eat at
  • Locate the trash receptacles and water stations in your designated area
  • Monitor these throughout your shift and empty trash and replace water as necessary
  • Each trash/composting area should have one volunteer at all times to monitor trash and recycling. Help attendees to correctly dispose of compostable materials (all vendors are sampling food with compostables)
  • Check bathroom soap, toilet paper, etc., and keep them stocked
  • Assist attendees with questions/issues that arise about the venue
  • Direct unknown questions to the CAA and Veg Fest tables

CAA Tabling – some instructions from CAA

  • Check in with Liz at the Veg Fest Table in the Great Hall of Coffman Memorial Union
  • Report to your volunteer leader (Liz will identify) who is in charge of your designated table/shift for the event
  • Smile and be friendly to the people you interact with. If you look friendly, people are more likely to approach and talk to you, ask questions, or take literature
  • Always be polite and outgoing, even if you are treated rudely. Aalways be friendly and respectful when representing CAA.
  • Greet attendees as they walk by or approach the table
  • Answer questions about CAA, or general veg questions
  • invite people to take the veg pledge
    • Veg Week runs from Nov. 15-23
    • People who pledge get discounts at restaurants, a free care pack, and tips on choosing vegan food
    • We’ll events through the week to help you: a vegan potluck, a bake sale, a dineout, a film screening, and a cooking class!
    • pledge to be vegetarian or vegan for the week
  • Become familiar with the literature that we distribute (see below). It is important to know which pamphlets have recipes, nutritional information, or other resources when people stop by the table.
  • Hand out literature and talk about what you are giving them – everything is free
    • Group brochure – if they are interested in CAA
    • Guide to Cruelty Free Eating – if they are interested in moving towards veganism. Tips, recipes, and nutrition info
    • Farm to Fridge – if they want to know about the cruelties of factory farming. 11 minute video showing brutal factory farming practices
    • Even If You Like Meat/Compassionate Choices – shows realities of factory farming
    • VegGuide.org cards – if they want tips on where to go to eat out
  • Direct unknown questions to your volunteer leader, volunteer leaders will direct further unknown questions to the Veg Fest Committee
  • Encourage interested people to sign up for our mailing list to receive weekly e-newsletters on upcoming events, articles, recipes, and much more or to donate to CAA (they did get to come to the event for free!). If appropriate, mention any upcoming events or ways to get involved immediately.
  • direct them to fill out volunteer form online (volunteer.exploreveg.org) if they want to get involved
  • direct them to donate online if they can (exploreveg.org/donate)
  • Be prepared to fill gaps in other areas as necessary

Pay Per View – instructions from VegFund

  • Check in with Liz at the Veg Fest Table in the Great Hall of Coffman Memorial Union
  • Report to your volunteer leader (Liz will identify) who is in charge of your designated table/shift for the event
  • Post the required Pay Per View signs
  • Invite attendees to watch a four minute video for which they’ll be paid $1, answer questions they have after viewing the video. Solicit people to watch the video by saying ‘Would you like to be paid a dollar to watch a five minute video?’
  • See if the person looks 14 or over. When in doubt, ask! Err on the conservative side.
  • If he or she is 14 or older, say something like this: “Here’s the deal. This is about where meat and dairy comes from in the U.S. If you watch the 5-minute video, we’ll give you a dollar.”
  • If a person asks if it’s scary, say, “Yes, it is bloody and gruesome, but it’s only 5 minutes long and it’s important information.”
  • If it’s a child under 14, say: “We need permission from your Mom or Dad or a grownup who’s with you today.”
  • Talk to the adult yourself. Say, “It’s up to you whether you want to let the kids watch.” Let the adult pre-screen the video if they want, and offer a dollar if they watch at least 5 minutes. The adult does NOT need to watch the video along with the childโ€”just needs to give permission for the child to watch. We’ve found it necessary to do this to avoid parental complaints to event organizers.
  • If you get the go-ahead from the parent/adult, explain “Here’s the deal,” etc., as described above.
  • Tell kids nicely but firmly that they need to pay attention in order to get the dollar.
  • When they finish watching, say something like, “Thank you for watching,” and hand them the dollar.
  • Offer them a Guide to Cruelty Free Eating.
  • To find out the effectiveness of the video, you can ask, “What’d you think?” (Ask this AFTER they’ve gotten out of the chair so that your discussion doesn’t delay others who want to watch).
  • You can also say, “If you have any questions, we have lots of information.” (Your guide to cruelty-free eating, recipes, nutrition info, more info about cruelty, etc.)
  • If a person doesn’t make it to the end of the 5-minute video, they don’t get the dollar. (If that happens, they probably won’t want it anyhow.)
  • Answer questions they may have. Direct them to resources at the CAA table
  • Please jot down your impressions and memorable comments from viewers.
  • Be sure a photographer takes four photos of the pay per view table (see the photographer section for more info about this)
  • Keep track of how many times people refuse the dollar bill
    • we begin with $180. At the end of the day, subtract the number of bills from 180 and add the number of people who refused to count the total number who watched.

Veg Fest Tabling – some instructions from CAA

  • Check in with Liz at the Veg Fest Table in the Great Hall of Coffman Memorial Union
  • Report to your volunteer leader (Liz will identify) who is in charge of your designated table/shift for the event
  • Smile and be friendly to the people you interact with. If you look friendly, people are more likely to approach and talk to you, ask questions, or take literature
  • Greet attendees as they walk by or approach the table
  • Help them locate different parts of the event, or answer questions about CAA, Veg Fest, or general veg questions
  • Become familiar with the event activities and layout. It is important to know speaker schedule, location of different areas, or other resources when people stop by the table as most questions will be about the event
  • Hand out the Veg Fest program and talk about what you are giving them
  • Encourage interested people to sign up for our mailing list to receive weekly e-newsletters on upcoming events, articles, recipes, and much more or to donate to CAA.
  • Always be polite and outgoing, even if you are treated rudely.
  • Direct unknown questions to your volunteer leader, volunteer leaders will direct further unknown questions to the Veg Fest Committee
  • Be prepared to fill gaps in other areas as necessary

Food Giveaway Tabling – some instructions from CAA

  • Check in with Liz at the Veg Fest Table in the Great Hall of Coffman Memorial Union
  • Report to your volunteer leader (Liz will identify) who is in charge of your designated table/shift for the event
  • Smile and be friendly to the people you interact with. Greet attendees as they walk by or approach the table
  • Hand out food samples and explain what you are giving them
  • Always be polite and outgoing, even if you are treated rudely.
  • Direct unknown questions to your volunteer leader, volunteer leaders will direct further unknown questions to the Veg Fest Committee
  • Be prepared to fill gaps in other areas as necessary

Food we’ll be giving out

  • Soy Dream Vanilla Lil’ Dreamers (aka ice cream sandwiches)
    • Only handle the dry ice with gloves on
    • try the samples yourself so you know what you’re serving
    • keep the area clean. Wipe area with damp towel as needed
    • tell recipients that all the food is vegan
    • Quantity: 94 boxes of 8
    • Supplies: sandwiches, cutting boards, knives, gloves, hairnets, towels, napkins, 2 oz cups
    • Preparation: With gloves, cut each sandwich in half, place in cup
    • Description of food: Soy milk ice cream sandwiches
    • Where you can get it: Frozen section at grocery stores and co-ops
    • How to prepare it: eat it straight out of the box for a delicious snack!
  • Chocolate Almond Milk
    • try the samples yourself so you know what you’re serving
    • keep the area clean. Wipe area with damp towel as needed
    • tell recipients that all the food is vegan
    • Quantity: 96 quarter gallons
    • Supplies; chocolate almond milk, cups, gloves, hairnets, napkins, towels
    • Preparation: Open container. Pour into souffle cups. Have 15 cups ready at a time – you can have more if they are being given out quickly
    • Description of food: Delicious nondairy chocolate milk
    • Where you can get it: Grocery stores like Cub Foods, Rainbow Foods, Whole Foods, and co-ops
    • How to prepare it: Drink it like chocolate cow’s milk. You can also get a non-chocolate kind, and use it like cow’s milk: on cereal, in pancakes, for baking, etc.
  • Tofurky Sausages w/marinara
    • try the samples yourself so you know what you’re serving
    • keep the area clean. Wipe area with damp towel as needed
    • tell recipients that all the food is vegan
    • Quantity: 1,000 samples
    • Supplies: sausages, marinara, crock pots, ladles, spoons, toothpicks (use only if needed), cutting boards, knives, oil, griddle (Only use one), power strip, extension cord, 2 oz cups, napkins, gloves, hairnets, towels
    • Preparation: Put a lot of marinara into a crock pot and start warming up. Make sure to have warmed marinara in one of the crockpots at all times. Saute sausages on griddle. With gloves, cut each sausage in 8ths, put in a cup with a dollop of marinara and serve
      • if the marinara doesn’t lubricate the sausages so they slide out you can put toothpicks in them
      • put out the packaging of the sausages so recipients can see what they’re eating
    • Description of food: Soy-based “sausage” available in various flavors such as kielbasa, beer brats, and italian
    • Where you can get it: Local co-ops, Whole Foods, many grocery stores
    • How to prepare it: Grill, saute it, eat it in a sandwich, chop it up and add it to spaghetti, any way you’d use animal-based sausage

Greeters – some instructions from CAA

  • Check in with Liz at the Veg Fest Table in the Great Hall of Coffman Memorial Union
  • Report to your volunteer leader (Liz will identify) who is in charge of your designated table/shift for the event
  • Smile and be friendly to the people you interact with
  • Greet attendees as they walk by
  • Help them locate different parts of the event. Know where the speaker room is, the kids area, the concert, and bathrooms. If you have a chance, go to each of these places before your shift starts.
  • Direct unknown questions to your volunteer leader, volunteer leaders will direct further unknown questions to the Veg Fest Committee
  • Hand out swag bags and explain what you are giving them
  • After we run out of swag bags, hand programs to attendees
  • Encourage interested people to stop by our CAA/Veg Fest Table and sign up for our mailing list to receive weekly e-newsletters on upcoming events, articles, recipes, and much more or to donate to CAA (they did get to come to the event for free!)
  • Always be polite and outgoing, even if you are treated rudely.
  • Be prepared to fill gaps in other areas as necessary

Kids Area

  • Check in with Liz at the Veg Fest Table in the Great Hall of Coffman Memorial Union
  • Report to Heidi, as she will be your volunteer leader and in charge of the Kids Area for the event
  • Heidi will explain all activities in the area and assign volunteers to different activities
  • Help kids with your designated activity, be friendly and helpful ๐Ÿ™‚
  • Heidi will be available to answer your questions or any unknown questions that come up from attendees, and she will direct unknown questions to the CAA and Veg Fest tables

Photographers

  • Take at least four photos of the pay per view setup:
    • One of the table setup
    • One displaying the location of the table in the exhibitor hall
    • One of people watching the videos (you can take this from behind them)
    • One more, preferably of people watching the video or of people who have watched the video talking to a CAA volunteer about it.
  • Take photos of people at the tables of each of our sponsors:
    • Yelp
    • Way Better Snacks
    • Captured by Brooke
    • Green Jeans Media
    • Mercy for Animals
    • Eastside Food Co-op
    • Evolve Systems
    • Move2Veg
    • Tofurky
    • Upton’s Naturals
    • Vegan Outreach
    • Take photos of guests with swag bags or try to get photos of people holding items from the swag bags
  • Take photos of people around each of our food vendor booths:
    • Asase Yaa
    • Kitty Corner Cafe
    • Flamingo
    • Seward Cafe
  • Take photos of people trying food samples at the Food Giveaway table (try to make it easy to see what the product is in the photo):
    • Soy Dream Ice Cream Sandwiches
    • Chocolate Almond Milk
    • Tofurky?
  • Take photos of people listening to talks (preferably with an image of the speaker too)
  • Take photos of kids having fun in the kid’s area
  • Take photos of each of the musicians performing
    • Sleepyhead
    • Alison Scott
    • Sean Anonymous
    • In Defence
  • Take photos of people watching the concert
  • Upload photos to CAA’s Flickr account (login info will be provided) no later than Oct. 30

General (Sign Language Interpreter)

  • Check in with Liz at the Veg Fest Table in the Great Hall of Coffman Memorial Union
  • Be prepared to fill gaps in other areas as needed
  • Direct unknown questions to the CAA and Veg Fest tables

Clean up

  • Check in with Liz at the Veg Fest Table in the Great Hall of Coffman Memorial Union
  • Report to Dave by 4:00pm, as he will be your volunteer leader and in charge of cleanup
  • Remove signs from Coffman and east river road ramp
  • Remove tablecloths from tables, wipe down, and pack away
  • Help take down CAA Table/Veg Fest Table/PPV Table/Food Giveaway Table, packing up our signs, advertising materials, give-aways, etc.
  • Clean any of our own materials such as water jugs, kids area supplies, etc. We do not need to clean the tables or the Great Hall
  • Arrange speaker room as we found it
  • Clean up the Whole (concert venue) and return supplies
  • Return the 8 compost bins to the loading dock on the east side of the building

Evening Transport

  • Check in with Liz at the Veg Fest Table in the Great Hall of Coffman Memorial Union
  • Report to Unny by 5:00pm
  • Load cars at the west side of Coffman Union
  • Carry designated equipment and supplies from the Great Hall to your car/transportation vehicles
  • When cars are full, drive supplies to CAA office, 2100 1st Ave S, Suite 200, Minneapolis
  • Unload supplies, bringing everything upstairs to the office
  • Repeat trips as necessary