On Monday, March 28th, The Discovery was officially certified as a National Service Enterprise from Points of Light, the world’s largest organization dedicated to volunteer service. The Service Enterprise certification is part of a national initiative to “strengthen the capacity of nonprofits to fundamentally leverage volunteers and their skills to address community needs” (Service Enterprise Initiative 2015). After a full year of work, and intensive training, The Discovery is proud to be the first organization in the state of Nevada to be certified through this national initiative.
In order to receive this certification, The Discovery underwent a 16-hour pre-certification training, met ten core competencies, and completed 40 action items related to its volunteer program. A three-tiered volunteer recruitment, training, and retention plan was also developed to meet the rigorous national standards.
As part of The Discovery’s mission to continue to appeal to a wide age demographic, from children to adults, and to better utilize volunteer expertise, a Teen Advisory Committee (TAC) was also formed. The TAC is just one of the newest efforts The Discovery has created to be a leading nonprofit founded on a strong base of volunteers. The TAC’s first project was to plan and run The Discovery’s Teen Science Night, an exclusive event held in March. More than 300 teens attended the inaugural event!
As a Service Enterprise, The Discovery now officially meets the Points of Light definition as an organization that “leverages volunteers and their skills across all levels of the organization to successfully deliver on its social mission.”
The Service Enterprise Certification is a pivotal step in assuring that The Discovery’s volunteers are being used in the most effective and efficient ways by tasking them with responsibilities that best compliment their talents and abilities. This certification serves as an example of how the museum is constantly seeking opportunities for improvement in its level of community engagement, mission success in delivering informal science education to our region, and strengthening our long-term sustainability as a science center for all ages.
To find out more about volunteer opportunities at The Discovery, click here.