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Small Appreciation Gifts for Volunteers

Update: May 15, 2024
Publish Date: May 15, 2024

Volunteers are the backbone of many organizations, providing invaluable support and dedicating their time and effort to causes they believe in. Recognizing their contributions with small appreciation gifts can go a long way in expressing gratitude and boosting morale. Here are some thoughtful ideas for small appreciation gifts for volunteers.

Personalized Thank You Notes

A handwritten thank you note can be a powerful way to show your appreciation. Personalizing each note with specific mentions of the volunteer’s contributions and how they have made a difference can make the gesture even more meaningful. These notes can be accompanied by a small token, such as a bookmark or a magnet, to serve as a lasting reminder of your gratitude.

Gift Cards

Gift cards are a versatile and practical way to say thank you. They allow volunteers to treat themselves to something they enjoy, whether it’s a cup of coffee, a meal at their favorite restaurant, or a shopping spree at a popular store. Choose gift cards from popular local businesses or online retailers to give your volunteers flexibility in how they use them. A personal touch, like a small note explaining why you chose that particular gift card, can make the gift feel more special.

Customized Merchandise

Branded merchandise such as t-shirts, mugs, or tote bags with the organization’s logo can be a great way to show appreciation while also fostering a sense of belonging and pride. Customized items are not only practical but also serve as a reminder of the volunteer’s contribution to the organization. Opt for high-quality items that your volunteers will use and appreciate, ensuring that they feel valued.

Plants or Flowers

A small plant or a bouquet of flowers can brighten a volunteer’s day and serve as a lovely token of appreciation. Plants, in particular, are long-lasting and can be a constant reminder of the volunteer’s hard work and dedication. Choose easy-to-care-for plants like succulents or potted herbs, which can be kept at home or at the office. Accompany the plant or flowers with a note expressing your gratitude for their support.

Personalized Gifts

Consider giving volunteers personalized gifts that reflect their individual interests and hobbies. Items such as monogrammed stationery, engraved keychains, or custom-made jewelry can show that you have taken the time to choose something special just for them. Personalized gifts demonstrate thoughtfulness and recognition of each volunteer’s unique contribution to the organization.

Snacks and Treats

Everyone loves a tasty treat! Gift baskets filled with gourmet snacks, chocolates, or homemade goodies can be a delightful way to thank your volunteers. Consider including a variety of treats to cater to different tastes and dietary preferences. Adding a personal touch, such as a note explaining why you chose each item or including a favorite recipe, can make the gift even more special.

Experience-Based Gifts

Experience-based gifts, such as tickets to a local event, a spa day, or a cooking class, can provide your volunteers with a memorable and enjoyable experience. These gifts offer a chance for relaxation and fun, which can be a welcome reward for their hard work. Tailor the experience to the interests of your volunteers to ensure it is something they will truly enjoy and appreciate.

Certificates of Appreciation

A certificate of appreciation can be a meaningful and formal way to recognize a volunteer’s contributions. Customize the certificate with the volunteer’s name, the organization’s logo, and a brief description of their achievements. Presenting the certificate during a volunteer appreciation event or meeting can make the recognition feel even more special. Pair the certificate with a small gift, such as a framed photo of the volunteer in action, to create a lasting memento.


Books can be a thoughtful and inspiring gift for volunteers, especially if you choose titles that align with their interests or the mission of your organization. Consider giving books that offer personal development, motivational stories, or insights related to your cause. Adding a personal note inside the book, explaining why you chose it, can make the gift more meaningful.

Volunteer Appreciation Events

While not a tangible gift, organizing a special event to honor your volunteers can be one of the most heartfelt ways to show your appreciation. Host a volunteer appreciation dinner, picnic, or awards ceremony where you can publicly acknowledge their hard work and dedication. Providing a small token of appreciation, such as a thank-you gift bag or a commemorative item, can make the event even more memorable.


Showing appreciation for volunteers doesn’t have to involve grand gestures or expensive gifts. Small, thoughtful tokens of gratitude can go a long way in making volunteers feel valued and appreciated. By choosing gifts that are personal, practical, and meaningful, you can express your gratitude in a way that resonates with each individual volunteer.

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