Five-to-nine Volunteers

It’s always good when I discover one of the long term ToExplore items sitting at the top-right corner of my white board in the offices is actually already being done by someone else.

One of the items that’s been there for a while is trying to explore the idea of ‘Five-to-Nine Volunteering‘ in more depth – exploring how micro-volunteering tasks could be completed by commuters on the train or tube, or people sitting around with little to do.

Well, thanks to a post from Tessy I’ve just discovered The Extraordinaries – working on exactly that sort of mobile micro-volunteering concept – and getting close to launch.

Best of all, as the SlideShare below shows, The Extraordinaries is not just a project about crowd-sourcing small tasks, but the team involved see it as a hook to engage people in longer term volunteering.

Five-to-nine volunteering

I found myself on a commuter train on the way to 2gether08 on Thursday morning.

Literally hundreds of, most probably very bright, people around me were heads down, buried away in Sudoku puzzles or reading the Metro – occaisionally checking their phones or Blackberry's.

What if we could find some way of harnessing that cognitive surplus – and providing volunteering/pro-social crowd-sourcing opportunities that commuters could dip into at five-minutes-to-nine, just before they got stuck into their nine-till-five?

Just a thought…

Photo credit: Rule of thirds by pfig