Calculating the Economic Impact of your NGO’s Volunteers is a Must!

Volunteer Time Trinidad TobagoTracking volunteer hours is a useful exercise, but determining the economic impact of the total time contributed by volunteers is an important output and data point.

Here’s an easy way to calculate the economic impact of your volunteers’ time:

1. Start with an acceptable hourly wage rate; use T&T’s current minimum wage rate as a starting point — TT$12.50 per hour.

2. Divide the volunteer work and ongoing tasks into categories based on job titles/categories and assign an appropriate hourly wage to each task category based on local employment salaries.

3. Determine the total number of hours given by all volunteers performing tasks in each  “job” category and multiply each by its hourly rate. Total the figures for all the volunteer jobs to arrive at a final figure for the economic value of your organisation’s volunteers.


This information can and should be shared with organisation funders and donors, partners and other stakeholders in annual reports, grant applications, newsletters and other organisational communications/marketing materials.

It’s an excellent way to quantify the extent of community participation in your NGO’s programs, events and/or activities and show funders that your organisation has the adequate human capital resources to implement programs and activities.

NOTE:  $141.70 TT per hour is the approximate monetary value of one (1) volunteer service hour to an organisation (using the U.S. 2012 hourly rate — US $22.14/hour — for the value of volunteer time).

The Economic Impact Of Volunteers Calculator is an easy tool to help calculate the economic impact of volunteers’ hours.  Developed by the Points of Light Institute, the calculator “estimates the appropriate wage rate for volunteer time based on what the person does.” Organizations can use the Calculator to determine the value of the time their volunteers give doing a wide variety of volunteer jobs.”

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