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Focus Groups, Task Forces & Committees

Volunteering for internal projects can help RCMG grow from the inside-out!

Updated 1/27/2023


RCMG is a volunteer organization that depends on the contributions, ideas, and feedback from membership to help determine news, brainstorm new possibilities, and build new realities. There are several internal projects that are available to volunteers. Participation is not required but very strongly recommended.


RCMG differentiates between a Focus Group discussion, a Task Force, and a Committee.


Focus Groups

A focus group is a temporary group of volunteers assembled to discuss a specific topic. Participants are responsible for meeting (as necessary) to investigate a situation and brainstorm ideas for next steps. These are usually very short-term projects, sometimes only a single meeting, with limited commitments outside of the focus group discussions.


Each focus group is sponsored by someone in RCMG leadership. This might be the program coordinator, a committee, the Board of Directors, or a project leader. Focus Group discussions may be opened to all volunteers or to specific sub-sets of volunteers, depending on the topic.


Recording Volunteer Service

Hours spend on Focus Group discussions should be recorded in the state database under category H5. (Administration: Other MG administrative committees)


Roles & Responsibilities

  • The Sponsor is responsible for establishing a focus group, organizing meetings, recruiting participants, and ensuring that all participants understand the goals of the specific focus group. The sponsor will also

  • The Facilitator is responsible for moderating discussions to make sure everyone's ideas are heard and reporting back to the Sponsor with the results of the discussions.

  • The Recorder is a participant who is responsible for notes taking during meetings and providing a summary of discussions to the Facilitator and other Participants.

  • The Participants (which may be MGs or Interns, depending on the topic) are responsible for attending all focus group meetings and providing input.

RCMG Focus Group Examples

Here are examples of previous Focus Group discussions.

  • Mentor Focus Group – collected feedback on how to improve the mentorship program; sponsored by the Membership Committee

  • After-Sale Focus Group – discussed the results of the annual plant sale and collected suggestions for the following year; sponsored by the Plant Sale Committee

  • New Member Focus Group – asked new RCMG volunteers about pain points in their first year; sponsored by the Membership Committee

  • Speakers Bureau Focus Group – invited frequent volunteers on the project to discuss new direction; sponsored by the Speakers Bureau Project Lead

Task Force

A task force is a temporary group of volunteers assembled to explore solutions to a specific situation or concern. Participants are responsible for meeting (as necessary) to determine a solution and next steps for their particular topic. These are usually short-term projects. A task force can be related to the program, a committee, or the Board of Directors.


Each task force is sponsored by someone in RCMG leadership. This might be the program coordinator, a committee, the Board of Directors, or a project leader. Task Force project may be opened to all volunteers or to specific sub-sets of volunteers, depending on the topic.


Recording Volunteer Service

Hours spend on Task Force projects should be recorded in the state database under category H5. (Administration: Other MG administrative committees)


Roles & Responsibilities

  • The Sponsor is responsible for establishing a task force, recruiting participants, and ensuring that all participants understand the goals of the Task Force.

  • The Facilitator is responsible for organizing meetings, moderating discussions to make sure everyone's ideas are heard, and reporting back to the task force sponsor with the results of the discussions.

  • The Recorder is a participant who is responsible for notes taking during meetings and providing a summary of discussions to the Facilitator and other Participants.

  • The Participants (which may be MGs or Interns, depending on the topic) are responsible for attending all Task Force meetings and providing input.

RCMG Task Force Examples

Here are examples of previous Task Force projects.

  • Strategic Plan Task Force – identified ways to reach a strategic goal; sponsored by the Board of Directors

  • Education Task Force – identified topics for monthly meetings; sponsored by the Education Committee

  • Project Task Force – investigated new volunteer service project; sponsored by the program coordinator

  • Financial Audit – performed annual audit; sponsored by the RCMG Treasurer

  • Photo Gallery Task Force – assessed tools and process for collecting and sharing photos from volunteers; sponsored set by the Communications Committee

Committee

A committee is a permanent group of volunteers assembled to focus on general tasks that require ongoing attention as part of the organization’s operations. Participants are responsible for meeting (as necessary) to determine address needs, tasks, and projects related to the committee's topic. These are usually long-running projects, spanning most or all of a year. A committee is often formed when the tasks needed to perform an operational task cannot be completed by a single volunteer..


Each committee is sponsored by someone in RCMG leadership. This might be the program coordinator, a committee, or the Board of Directors. Committees may be opened to all volunteers or to specific sub-sets of volunteers, depending on the topic.


Recording Volunteer Service

Hours spend on Committees should be recorded in the state database under category H5. (Administration: Other MG administrative committees)


Roles & Responsibilities

  • The Sponsor is responsible for establishing a committee, recruiting a chair, and ensuring that mission of the Committee is clear. The Sponsor may assign specific projects to the committees, which may become smaller focus group discussions or task force projects.

  • The Chair (co-chair) is responsible for recruiting participants, organizing meetings, moderating discussions to make sure everyone's ideas are heard, delegating follow-up tasks, and reporting back to the committee Sponsor with the results of the discussions. The chair is also expected to attend Board Meetings to provide progress updates about the Committee's progress. Some committee chairs have a voting role on the Board of Directors.

  • The Participants (which may be MGs or Interns, depending on the topic) are responsible for attending all Task Force meetings and providing input.

RCMG Committees

Here are examples of previous Committees.

  • Communications Committee

  • Education Committee

  • Membership Committee

  • Plant Sale Committee

  • Barn Garden Committee

  • Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Committee

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