Albury Wodonga Volunteer Resource Bureau

Homework Club Profile

In 2024 the Learning Beyond the Bell team will be showcasing some of the programs and hardworking people in the Out-of-School-Hours Learning Support Sector. Lou from Homework Help at Hyphen Library shares her success with volunteer retention, including strategies to recruit and retain.

Name of Learning Support Program
Wodonga Homework Help Program

Is your Learning Support Program community based or school based? Regional or rural?
Our program is community based. It is held in Hyphen (Wodonga Library) for primary school aged children who attend any school in Wodonga. It is not delivered by a school it is delivered by the Albury Wodonga Volunteer Resource Bureau.

Name one way you have adapted your strategies towards recruiting and retaining volunteers and what has the outcome been?
My Strategy for recruiting volunteers is predominantly through the usual avenues our webpage, Facebook or word of mouth. To switch an inquiry to a volunteer registration I explain clearly what the program is about, to let people know that experience is not required and that the volunteering is flexible, so they can still go away on holidays or for work etc…This appears to be important for all volunteers. My strategy for retaining volunteers is to make the experience for the volunteers pleasurable and rewarding. I do this by always make the volunteers feel welcome and supported. We listen to any queries they may have about a child and act on it if necessary. We keep the program numbers at a level that is manageable by the number of volunteers we have. The outcome to both these strategies is that we have a team of fabulous volunteers who consistently engage in the program. Even if they go away for a few months travelling or they have to leave for some other reason they almost always return.

What is a significant challenge the program has faced in the past in relation to recruiting and retaining tutors?
How did you overcome this challenge? Our main challenge is the winter months. The retired volunteers often head north in the colder months, so our volunteer numbers drop temporarily. To overcome this challenge we ensure that the remaining volunteers are not overwhelmed, we consider carefully the group dynamics that each volunteer may have, until the travelling volunteers return and student to volunteer ratios reduce.

What milestones has the program achieved so far this year?
To finally have a session where 23 students each had their own volunteer – woo hoo.

What do you do to celebrate your students and tutors achievements?
At the end of every term we dedicate the last class for the students to have a fun activity/ games and party food. In addition, we have two events to celebrate our volunteers. The first one is in May for National Volunteers Week and the second is in November as an end of year celebration.

If you would like your club to be profiled, or have a volunteer you’d like to celebrate, please get in touch at