A Volunteer Policy is the foundation on which your organisation’s involvement with volunteers should be based. It forms the basis of your entire volunteer programme, giving cohesion and consistency to all elements in your organisation that affect volunteers (i.e. recruitment, expenses, health & safety etc.) Volunteer Policies are the key to involving a diverse group of volunteers, because they help to define the role of volunteers within the organisation, and how they can expect to be treated.
Why do we need one?
A Volunteer Policy demonstrates an organisation’s commitment both to its volunteer programme and to its individual volunteers. By having a policy in place, you are showing that care and thought has gone into the volunteer programme.
Volunteer Policies help to ensure fairness and consistency. Dealing with volunteers, means dealing with a diverse range of people, being able to refer to a written policy ensures that decisions are not made on an ad-hoc basis, and that all volunteers are treated equally and fairly.
A policy enables volunteers to know where they stand. It offers them some security, in that they know how they can expect to be treated, and where they can turn if they feel that things are going wrong.
Volunteer Policies also help to ensure that paid staff, senior management and trustees fully understand why volunteers are involved and what role they have within the organisation.
Drawing up a Volunteer Policy is the ideal starting point when considering how to involve volunteers. Once the Policy is written it should be reviewed annually in consultation with volunteers, staff and trustees, perhaps a representative steering committee.
for more info, please look at our: guidelines-on-managing-volunteers