Volunteer Recommendation Letter Writing Guide 2023

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    Anjit.V.S founder of Infig Content Hub is a writer and an academic documentation expert. Over the years, he has written documents for thousands of students and hundreds of businesses and individuals worldwide.

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    AI and ChatGPT might be ruling the world of news these days but behind all of these are real human beings. They have emotions, not just of happy achievements but also of terrible losses. Volunteers at various places play a key role in helping people deal with terrible situations – be it of loss of dear ones, a relapse of drug addiction or the trauma of an accident. Another thing is that your volunteer experience can be highlighted in your resume when you apply for jobs or job changes. One of the first preparatory steps to start volunteering at a reputed institution is to get ready with a volunteer recommendation letter. In this blog, we will help you understand all about it. This blog covers: 

    • What is a recommendation letter for volunteer work? 
    • How to write and format it? 
    • Volunteer recommendation letter sample to help you get familiar with. 

    What Is a Recommendation Letter for Volunteer Work?

    A recommendation letter for volunteer work is an official letter written on behalf of you by someone who knows you personally and has the standing to write. The letter is to recommend you to an organization or company or NGO citing your previous academic achievements, good personality traits and any instances where you showed a passion for volunteering and community services.  

    Why Do Organizations Ask for Reference Letter for A Volunteer?

    While there are a lot of aspiring students with genuine interest and passion trying for volunteer experiences, there are also those who pursue such programs just for the sake of it. A community service letter of recommendation helps the admission panel of institutes identify deserving candidates more easily. 

    Five Questions You Should Ask Yourself Before Writing a Letter of Recommendation for Volunteer Work?

    If you are writing a reference letter for someone aspiring to do community service, make sure you proceed to write it after asking these questions yourself. 

    How do I know this candidate?

    Explain in what capacity or nature you and this candidate associated with each other and for how long this lasted. 

    What is my overall impression of this candidate?

    Specify what your overall impression of this candidate is. This should reflect every aspect of the candidate such as his personality, academic skills and other areas.  

    What personal qualities or attributes of the candidate make him perfect for this community service?

    List down the specific areas of the candidate that make him ideal for community service. This would cover the candidate’s social commitment, compassion, kindness, willingness to help, ability to communicate etc. 

    Are there any examples where I witnessed the candidate demonstrate his exceptional volunteering skills or made any significant achievements?

    Think about any social events like a blood donation camp or street cleaning drive or community service events which were initiated by the candidate. It can also be such events where the candidate made significant contributions. 

    What areas should he improve in order to excel in his role?

    It is good to think about and write one or two areas where the candidate can still improve. Mention them as areas where the candidates have immense potential to grow. This way you can bring forth a balanced perspective in the reference letter. 

    Five Essential Volunteer Recommendation Letter Traits That Admission Officers Value

    Incorporating the following traits into your writing, you can have your candidate’s LOR stand out from the others and thus help him/her win the selection procedure. 

    • Straightforwardness: Admission officers would immensely appreciate a reference letter for a volunteer that is straight to the point. 
    • Simple language: An LOR written using simple language helps your messages easily get communicated to the reader. 
    • Originality: Your LOR should be original and not be a copy of an example letter of recommendation for community services. 
    • Examples: Admission officers want to know how the applicant can excel as a volunteer based on examples of their skills and achievements. 
    • Relevance and readability: The LOR must provide the reader with all relevant information that they are looking for. Also, it should be easy for the recipient to read and understand. 

    What Is the Recommended Length of a Letter of Recommendation for Volunteer Work?

    The exact length of a volunteer reference letter can vary depending on institute requirements, the number of points the referee decides to cover etc. However, here are some suggestions for you to keep in mind. 

    Number of words:

    400 - 500 words

    Number of characters:

    2000 to 2500


    3 to 6


    "1" at the top, bottom, right and left

    Font size

    12 Points

    Font Style:

    Times New Roman or Arial

    Line spacing

    1.5 or Double Line

    Sample Letter of Recommendation for Community Involvement


    To help you understand how to write, structure and format your write-up, here is a sample. 

    Tharuni Mehta


    XYZ Volunteering Society

    ________ (place)


    25 January 2023


    Respected ___________ (name)

    I am happy and delighted to write this letter to recommend the candidature of Miss. Rithika Singhania for the post of Public Relations Officer at your company. I am Tharuni Mehta, Chairman of XYZ Volunteering Society, and I have known Rithika for the past 2 years as she worked as a volunteer for our XYZ Volunteering Society. I am really impressed with her work ethics and I take this opportunity to recommend her for her desired position.

    Our XYZ Volunteering Society mainly works for the underprivileged girls who even lack the right to education. The main mission of our society is to improve the living condition of women in our nearby village by making them empowered by providing basic education. Rithika has been instrumental in executing all the operations of our society by engaging in the activities vibrantly and enthusiastically.

    Though she was busy with her daily college schedules, she never failed in her responsibilities towards our organization. Daily after college, she went to our adopted village to teach basic communicative English and boosted the children’s confidence in speaking and writing English language. She was one of the most favorite teachers of students. The way she engaged the students with exciting games must receive special mention.

    Rithika was always punctual and dedicated to her responsibilities. Compared to other volunteers, it is her diligence, enthusiasm and indefatigability that makes her unique and a favorite member of all. She is a vibrant person who always likes to be surrounded by individuals and her communication skill and proficiency in the English language must also be highlighted. She loves what she does and this inspired us to select her as the best volunteer of the year.

    Having seen her dedication and passion for the work, I can vouch for her professional skills and can undoubtedly recommend her candidature. Her professionalism at this tender age is very remarkable, and thus I am sure she would be a worthy addition to your company.

    Please feel free to contact me, at my mail ____________ or mobile number _________, if you require further clarification.


    With Regards,

    Tharuni Mehta

    Tips for Effective Utilization of Sample Community Service Letter of Recommendation

    • Note down your important findings after each session of sample reading. 
    • Compare multiple samples and see how they differ in overall writing tone. 
    • Do not be tempted to use any sentences or ideas directly from the sample. 
    • Learn how to format and structure your reference letter from the samples.
    • Skip reading a sample if it is not relevant to your exact purpose. 

    Breaking Down the Volunteer Recommendation Letter Writing Process in Six Simple Steps

    Verify the purpose:

     Find out for which institute and for which exact volunteer program the letter is being asked. All the other steps must be done after this. 

    Assemble key information:

    Collect relevant and latest information from the candidates. Also, collect data from your institute records and registers. 

    Draft a first draft:

    Roughly compose a first draft as a mould to add further information. This will help you stay focused and in compliance with the guidelines. 

    Add examples:

     Add relevant data like examples and evidence into each section to make your points stronger and sound more realistic. 

    Review and refine:

    After the writing is over, go through it word by word and rectify all grammatical, spelling and punctuation flaws. Refine your write-up by proofreading at least four times. 

    Submit on time:

    Read the submission guidelines and submit accordingly – whether it should be sent to the organization from your official email or taken as a printout and handed over to the candidate. 

    Whom Should I Approach to Author My Recommendation Letter for Volunteer Work?

    There are a variety of people you can actually approach in order to help you with authoring your reference letter for a volunteer. Here are some suggestions. 

    • Community leaders: If you have worked for an NGO that works in particular communities, the community leaders there would be able to recommend you for another volunteer project. 
    • Professors or HODs: A professor or HOD from your previous academic program can in fact author your reference letter. 
    • Social workers: If you have associated with any reputed social workers for more than six months and they know you personally, they could be chosen to author your LOR. 

    In addition to the aforementioned, you can consider your colleagues, mentors, supervisors or friends or even family members to write your reference letter depending on the context. However, always give preference to authorized individuals first. 

    Best Practices and Pitfalls to Avoid While Writing A Letter Of Recommendation For Volunteer Work

    Best Practices 

    • Get to know the applicant better by asking him more about his motivation for the volunteer work. 
    • Maintain a professional tone while being engaging and pleasant at the same time. 
    • Make the reference letter comprehensive by touching upon multiple aspects of the candidate. 
    • Highlight relevant examples that show the candidate’s appropriateness for the volunteer program. 
    • Tailor your letter to the particular community service project and the organization. Read the guidelines and organization details carefully. 

    Pitfalls to Avoid 

    • Avoid writing vague information or writing inadequately about the candidate’s aptness for the program. 
    • Avoid making mistakes due to improper proofreading or writing in a hurry. 
    • Avoid exaggeration about the candidate’s skills, strengths and talents in community services. 
    • Do not forget to mention a few areas where the candidate can improve to be a great community worker. A balanced narrative is advised. 
    • Avoid writing points that do not benefit the candidate. Mention only relevant points that help him get a selection for the community service project. 


    Validate Your Community Service Letter of Recommendation Before You Submit – Final Checklist


    With that, we conclude this blog about recommendation letter for volunteer work. 

    We are excited to know how much it helped you understand the topic and write a tailored LOR.  

    If you would like us to cover any other points related to this or give you access to more volunteer recommendation letter samples, let us know in the comments below.