How to Account for Volunteers’ Time on Your Grant Application - dummies

How to Account for Volunteers’ Time on Your Grant Application

By Beverly A. Browning

For decades, volunteers have rolled up their sleeves and stepped in to serve their communities. You still have to account for them on your grant application, even though you won’t be delving into grant monies to pay them.

Volunteers are most often used where staffing shortages or gaps occur due to funding shortfalls. Nonprofits and for-profits that use volunteers in their organizations treat those volunteers as personnel; they have scheduled hours, they sign in and out of shifts, and they have job descriptions on file in personnel or human resources departments.

Volunteers don’t receive paychecks or contracted services fees for their volunteer work commitment; however, they’re considered workforce or workplace contributors.

For federal and out-of-state foundation and corporate requests, use the national hourly rate to calculate the total value of volunteer hours. The national hourly rate is the number of volunteers on your project multiplied by their average hours each, annually. For state funding agencies as well as foundations and corporations in your state, use the hourly amount listed for your state to calculate the value of your project’s volunteers.

Visit to access a state-by-state list of the dollar value for volunteer hours.