Craig Newmark, founder of Craigslist, offers his thoughts on Obama’s approach to promoting volunteerism. One point he makes is enhancing existing online tools for matching volunteers with organizations rather than trying to build something new. Volunteer Match is one example he cites.
The impact of service on the person who serves may be immediate, but a volunteer might never see the impact he had on the community. I found a story in the NY Daily News about a VISTA from the late 60s named Michael Gaines who has returned to the site where he served to see if he can learn anything about the lives of the children he served. The story has no closure yet, but I will keep my eyes peeled for developments.