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7 Simple Volunteer Appreciation Gifts That Mean a Lot

7 Simple Volunteer Appreciation Gifts That Mean a Lot

January 11, 2024 by Giving Assistant Editorial Team

Large or small, most organizations and many nonprofits rely on volunteers. Naturally, you want to express your gratitude with volunteer appreciation gifts or other tokens expressing thankfulness.

The thing is: do volunteers really use the items they are given? Do volunteer gifts end up in storage, the trash, or worse, regifted? More importantly, do the gift ideas help the volunteers understand just how much their work matters to you and the community?

Here are seven ideas for volunteer appreciation gifts that will show how thankful you are to your amazing volunteers.

The Best Volunteer Appreciation Gift Ideas for 2023

1. Bronze Clock Keychain

Bronze plated keychain

A clock and thank you tag complete this bronze-plated keychain, giving it an antique feel that surprisingly doesn’t feel out of place. A volunteer appreciation gift in bulk, you’ll get 10 keychains in this set, a perfect size for smaller groups.

These creative volunteer appreciation gifts can be used to thank many different groups, working well as classroom volunteer recognition gifts along with those who volunteer with charities or within religious communities.

Savings Tip: Check out AliExpress promo codes for the best deal.

2. Customized Glass Coaster

Custom text laser square glass coasters

Have custom text or images laser engraved into this four-piece set of square glass coasters that show how much you appreciate people giving their time to help out your organization. Any time they sit their drink down on it, they will remember the work they did and the impact it made.

Personalized volunteer appreciation gifts ideas are great thank you gifts because they combine a quality product with your personal touch.

Savings Tip: Find Walmart promo codes for the best deal.

3. Personalized Pens with Stylus

Pens with stylus

A volunteer appreciation gifts bulk
buy, made even better by the fact that they offer free customization, use up to
40 characters to engrave thank you, a quote or each individual volunteer’s

Versatile, the retractable pen’s tip is a stylus for touch screen devices. Available in assorted colors, this 24-piece set makes for an inexpensive volunteer appreciation gift that offers value to volunteers of all ages – perfect for volunteer week.

Savings Tip: Get Personalization Mall promo codes for the best deal.

4. Handcrafted Scented Soy Candle

Essential Mason Candles pure soy wax candle

This clean burning candle’s label can be customized with your very own thank you message. The best volunteer appreciation gifts align well with a company’s goals, making this one excellent for showing volunteer appreciation for those who care about clean living and the environment.

Made from wax grown in the United States, it supports American soy farmers and the 100% cotton wick burns without releasing heavy metals.

Savings Tip: Get Walmart promo codes for the best deal.

5. Motivational Water Bottle

Motivation water bottle

Made from non-toxic material, this 30 oz. water bottle comes with all the inspiration volunteers need to stay hydrated so they can keep giving their best. It features a time marker that helps people drink more water daily and a straw to drink while running and easy one-hand operation for opening the nozzle.

Available in 5 colors, these useful water bottles are cool and easy volunteer staff appreciation gifts that send a clear message of gratitude.

Savings Tip: Get Walmart promo codes for the best deal.

6. Gratitude Bracelet Cuff

Stainless steel gratitude bracelet

Gifts for volunteer appreciation week should be cherished by recipients and this cuff is sure to please. Very sleek and elegant, the cuff has “never underestimate the difference you made and the lives you touched” engraved on the interior and is made from 100% recyclable stainless steel that’s hypoallergenic and nickel free.

Timeless, it is one of the best school, work or church volunteer appreciation gifts to give.

Savings Tip: Find the best AliExpress coupon codes for the best deal.

7. Mini Glass Jars with Cork Stoppers

Mini glass jar with cork stoppers

Lovers of DIY volunteer appreciation gifts have a unique opportunity to create volunteer appreciation gifts cheaply and easily with these jars. Sold in a set of 24, slip a piece of paper inside, telling volunteers what makes them special. You can give them an even better understanding of their value and impact by having the staff contribute to each jar.

One of the most creative volunteer appreciation gifts, they won’t soon be forgotten.

Savings Tip: Get AliExpress promo codes for the best deal.

Giving Appreciation Gifts For Volunteers

Sincerely expressing gratitude to
volunteers affirms that their choice to give their time freely was a good choice
indeed. Saying thank you also does something else: humbly indicates your
organization’s dependence on others.

Volunteer appreciation gifts done
right will retain the best volunteers as well as bring in more helping hands.
Many organizations simply cannot function without their volunteers, so learn
how to give them thoughtful gifts that acknowledge all they’ve done.

Volunteer appreciation gifts should:

1. Be personal

“Thanks to everyone who gave their time” is very generic and
risks alienating people. Avoid the generic and express your gratefulness in
real ways by acknowledging specific contributions individuals have made.

2. Include everyone

Limiting the appreciation to only those hardcore volunteers
does not give anyone else an incentive to come back. There are plenty of budget-friendly
volunteer appreciation gifts, like bookmarks, gift cards or t-shirts, that make
spreading the easy.

3. Reinforce purpose

Ideas for volunteer appreciation gifts that encourage people
to continue supporting worthwhile causes do wonders, especially on days when
they may question why they’re volunteering. Examples of gift ideas are using
pictures of staff and volunteers working on projects or quotes from people
they’ve worked with.

4. Foster a connection

Volunteer appreciation gifts in this category encourage
volunteers to relate to each other, strengthening their bonds. For example,
bracelets engraved with scriptures are great Christian volunteer appreciation
gifts, while relaxing candles with a personal message imply that everyone has
the right to be tired; they’ve worked hard and deserve some downtime.

5. Encourage autonomy

Gift ideas that promote independence within an organization
cultivate feelings of inclusion, ownership and responsibility. These are also
some of the more inexpensive volunteer appreciation gifts, including lanyards,
tote bags or lapel pins for volunteers who are in charge or training and
programming materials on thumb drives.

6. Be an ongoing effort

Volunteer Appreciation Day is a wonderful way to praise
volunteers’ time and effort, but hopefully this isn’t the only day you are
taking the time out to recognize your volunteers. Waiting until the end of the
year isn’t necessary either, items on this list are perfect to hand out

Show Your Appreciation with A Gift

An important aspect of any
organization’s long-term success, prioritizing volunteer appreciation gifts
make volunteers feel noticed, and in turn, spread the word that working with
your group is worthwhile. 

The importance of meaningful and
engaging volunteer appreciation gifts cannot be overlooked, and with the ideas
on this list, you’ll find gifts that volunteers will actually use and value.