TSOS’s mission is to use art, photography, videography, and stories to humanizes refugees, creating a sense of empathy and kinship between the refugee and the far-off foreigner experiencing the refugee’s story. In the process of telling these stories, TSOS connects with refugees who need help and individuals who are inspired to make a difference. TSOS is not an organization set-up to change the immediate circumstances of refugees, nor can it provide a volunteer position for every individual inspired by its stories, but these needs are still very important to the organization.
Through the TSOS Networking Team, TSOS maintains relationships with interviewed refugees and connects them with organizations would could help when situations get desperate. The TSOS Networking Team also builds relationships with organizations who support refugees and actively refers its readers and followers to those organizations, so they can volunteer and help make life better for refugees.
Our Volunteer Networking Assistants (NAs) work remotely to build relationships with target NGOs, find points of contacts at those organizations and determine how volunteers can join them as well as the services they could potentially offer to refugees in need. Each NA keeps in touch with a set of refugees that have been interviewed to check in on how they are doing. NAs also help respond to emails from individuals interested in volunteering or supporting the refugee community in some way.
Connecting with NGOs
- Research and develop simple profiles of worldwide NGOs serving the refugee community
- Recommend NGOs that would be a good potential TSOS partner
- Identify points of contact at target NGOs
- Reach out to target points of contact at NGOs to share about TSOS and the goals of the networking team; recommend ways the organizations could work together, such as:
- Connecting the NGO with refugee communities in need
- Connecting potential volunteers with the NGO
- Spotlighting the NGO on TSOS’s social media or website
- Spotlighting TSOS on the NGO’s social media or website
Connecting with Refugees
- Stay in touch with a set of refugees who have been interviewed by TSOS to:
- Provide words of support
- Find out if there are critical needs that could be met by a partner NGO
- Answer questions about the ongoing storytelling work
- Let the Story Collection Team know about major developments for the refugees that can and should be shared on social media or through an in-person follow-up interview
Connecting with Volunteers
- Respond to emails asking for help connecting a potential volunteer with external refugee organizations
The role of Networking Assistant requires about 1-5 hours of work per week. The NA commits to attend bi-monthly TSOS teleconference calls and External Relations Team meetings.
TSOS respects the needs of volunteers to balance other home and professional commitments. The Networking Manager and Director of External Relations will work with the NA to ensure that communication, meetings, and commitments align within the volunteer’s boundaries and availability.
The Networking Manager (NM) or the Director of External Relations will meet with the NA to clarify responsibilities and give initial assignments. The NM will provide coaching on how to speak with individuals from NGOs as well as to refugees and volunteers. The NM will check-in regularly with the NA on assignments, provide ongoing responsibilities, and to check for any emotional needs that may arise from communicating directly with refugees in challenging circumstances.
The Networking Assistant is managed by the Networking Manager. The NA is considered a member of the External Relations Team, which consists of:
- The Networking Team
- The Fundraising and Development Team
- The Public Relations Team
- The Analytics Team