Everyone who were organising Artova Film Festival were more or less volunteers. Everyone was there because they wanted to. Even though I think most of us showed the same level of commitment they would if it were a “real” job, at the end of the day, it’s still voluntary work.
Responsibility can be a tricky concept in a volunteer project. It’s easy to trust active and enthusiastic people with different tasks but at the same time you can’t really oblige people to stay with the project and do their share when what they receive for their efforts is mostly a good feeling and new experiences. Having people commit to the project, then, originates with their own will to participate and a good atmosphere. To ensure things get done even if something comes up, it would be ideal to have a “backup” for even the most active of volunteers, someone who knows what has already been done and what is yet to be done. Sharing the responsibilities could be an encouraging factor because knowing you are not in charge alone would maybe make joining the organisational group less intimidating.
A good example of sharing responsibilities was our media team: everyone had their own responsibilities but others were constantly up-to-date about what others are working on and were thus able to give advice or assume some of the tasks.
People have much more passion for what they are doing precisely because they are volunteering their time. This is positive in that everyone strives constantly to get the best possible result – people are putting their hearts into what they are doing, they aren’t working for a monetary compensation. The passion can be a negative thing as well: everyone is putting their heart into what they are doing and everyone has their own view of what the end result should be like.
Translation by Pigasus Translations.