Would you recommend Taproot Foundation Bay Area?
Too many volunteers for too few opportunities. You have to waste an afternoon/evening commuting to a required "orientation," fill out a stack of paperwork, and then after that, nothing.
I have been an Account Director with Taproot since December 2009 and I would HIGHLY recommend that any professional person join Taproot.
It’s great to be able to use my professional skills and experience to make a difference throughout the Los Angeles area. Only through Taproot have I found an opportunity to work with a wide variety of non-profits, and on a wide range of projects. And, working with Taproot, it’s nice to know there’s a great support system and infrastructure backing me. The management staff at Taproot is supportive and encouraging, all while allowing their Account Directors to manage a project relatively autonomously.
Taproot is also a great place to network with other professionals, both in your field and in complementing fields. The camaraderie amongst Taproot consultants is second to none.
If you are looking for a place to use your skills and where you can make a substantial contribution to a multiple non-profits, Taproot is for you!
I volunteered with Taproot for 5 years from 2006-2011 as a web developer, project manager, and account director. They used to award grants to non-profits based on need and value to the community. Now their grant awards are based on the dictates of the marketing departments of their corporate sponsors. IE: The marketing department of rich XYZ corp thinks it would be good PR to donate to a charity that saves gray squirrels because it's the sexy cause of the moment. So they pay Taproot to find such an organization and award a grant. The "pro-bono" team does all the work for free with zero help and support from Taproot staff, and Taproot / XYZ Corp reap all the benefits. Taproot started out as a great organization, but they have lost their vision. They used to hold their volunteers in high regard, but now treat them like commodities. In my opinion it has gotten to the point of borderline scam. If you are unemployed or fresh out of school maybe they'll work for you.
Taproot Foundation is THE BEST! As a 4-year pro bono project Account Director, I have always experienced exceptional commitment, care, professionalism, business-savvy, results-oriented staff, volunteers and clients. Taproot is a well-run, forward-thinking, trend-setting organization that believes we can make a real difference ... and we DO!
I've worked with Taproot on 3 projects, in different roles, and each experience has been terrific. Projects are well-scoped and structured, there is solid support, and a network of smart, interesting, fun volunteers. I have and will continue to recommend Taproot to my colleagues and friends who are looking for new ways to apply their skills to a cause that matters.