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Making volunteers : civic life after welfare's end / Nina Eliasoph.

By: Eliasoph, Nina.
Material type: TextTextSeries: JSTOR eBooks.Princeton studies in cultural sociology: Publisher: Princeton, N.J. : Princeton University Press, ©2011Description: 1 online resource (xviii, 308 pages).Content type: text Media type: computer Carrier type: online resourceISBN: 9781400838820; 1400838827.Subject(s): Voluntarism -- United States -- Case studies | Young volunteers in community development -- United States -- Case studies | Volunteer workers in community development -- United States -- Case studies | Community development -- United States -- Case studiesAdditional physical formats: Print version:: Making volunteers.DDC classification: 361.0068/3 LOC classification: HN90.V64 | E425 2011Online resources: Click here to view this ebook.
Contents:
Cover; Title; Copyright; Contents; Acknowledgments; Introduction: Empower Yourself; Chapter 1: How to Learn Something in an Empowerment Project; Part One: Cultivating Open Civic Equality; Part Two: Cultivating Intimate Comfort and Safety; Part Three: Celebrating Our Diverse, Multicultural Community; Notes; References; Index.
Summary: "Volunteering improves inner character, builds community, cures poverty, and prevents crime. We've all heard this kind of empowerment talk from nonprofit and government-sponsored civic programs. But what do these programs really accomplish? In Making Volunteers, Nina Eliasoph offers an in-depth, humorous, wrenching, and at times uplifting look inside youth and adult civic programs. She reveals an urgent need for policy reforms in order to improve these organizations and shows that while volunteers learn important lessons, they are not always the lessons that empowerment programs aim to teach. With short-term funding and a dizzy mix of mandates from multiple sponsors, community programs develop a complex web of intimacy, governance, and civic life. Eliasoph describes the at-risk youth served by such programs, the college-bound volunteers who hope to feel selfless inspiration and plump up their resumés, and what happens when the two groups are expected to bond instantly through short-term projects. She looks at adult 'plug-in' volunteers who, working in after-school programs and limited by time, hope to become like beloved aunties to youth. Eliasoph indicates that adult volunteers can provide grassroots support but they can also undermine the family-like warmth created by paid organizers. Exploring contradictions between the democratic rhetoric of empowerment programs and the bureaucratic hurdles that volunteers learn to navigate, the book demonstrates that empowerment projects work best with less precarious funding, more careful planning, and mandatory training, reflection, and long-term commitments from volunteers. Based on participant research inside civic and community organizations, Making Volunteers illustrates what these programs can and cannot achieve, and how to make them more effective"--Provided by publisher.
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Item type Current location Call number URL Status Date due Barcode
Electronic Book UT Tyler Online
Online
HN90.V64 E425 2011 (Browse shelf) https://ezproxy.uttyler.edu/login?url=http://www.jstor.org/stable/10.2307/j.ctt7rhx0 Available ocn714802993

Includes bibliographical references and index.

"Volunteering improves inner character, builds community, cures poverty, and prevents crime. We've all heard this kind of empowerment talk from nonprofit and government-sponsored civic programs. But what do these programs really accomplish? In Making Volunteers, Nina Eliasoph offers an in-depth, humorous, wrenching, and at times uplifting look inside youth and adult civic programs. She reveals an urgent need for policy reforms in order to improve these organizations and shows that while volunteers learn important lessons, they are not always the lessons that empowerment programs aim to teach. With short-term funding and a dizzy mix of mandates from multiple sponsors, community programs develop a complex web of intimacy, governance, and civic life. Eliasoph describes the at-risk youth served by such programs, the college-bound volunteers who hope to feel selfless inspiration and plump up their resumés, and what happens when the two groups are expected to bond instantly through short-term projects. She looks at adult 'plug-in' volunteers who, working in after-school programs and limited by time, hope to become like beloved aunties to youth. Eliasoph indicates that adult volunteers can provide grassroots support but they can also undermine the family-like warmth created by paid organizers. Exploring contradictions between the democratic rhetoric of empowerment programs and the bureaucratic hurdles that volunteers learn to navigate, the book demonstrates that empowerment projects work best with less precarious funding, more careful planning, and mandatory training, reflection, and long-term commitments from volunteers. Based on participant research inside civic and community organizations, Making Volunteers illustrates what these programs can and cannot achieve, and how to make them more effective"--Provided by publisher.

Print version record.

Cover; Title; Copyright; Contents; Acknowledgments; Introduction: Empower Yourself; Chapter 1: How to Learn Something in an Empowerment Project; Part One: Cultivating Open Civic Equality; Part Two: Cultivating Intimate Comfort and Safety; Part Three: Celebrating Our Diverse, Multicultural Community; Notes; References; Index.

Reviews provided by Syndetics

CHOICE Review

Sociologist Eliasoph (Univ. of Southern California) reports on her participant-as-observer study focusing on the use of volunteers in empowerment programs for disadvantaged youth. The work is a critical analysis of government and privately funded empowerment programs. The author uses a limited definition of "volunteer," focusing primarily on empowerment programs as they are presently funded. She argues that paid professionals should provide social services and criticizes the use of volunteers. Eliasoph writes well, and the text is within the reach of most adult readers. The book is lightly referenced and adequately indexed. For libraries serving departments of social work that seek expanded holdings. Summing Up: Recommended. Most levels/libraries. R. T. Sigler emeritus, University of Alabama

Author notes provided by Syndetics

Nina Eliasoph is associate professor of sociology at the University of Southern California. She is the author of Avoiding Politics .

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