1. Reason for Policy:
- The Anaphylaxis Campaign (TAC) acknowledges the contribution and impact volunteers have on society through their involvement in organisations. TAC recognises the historic and on-going role that volunteers play in the work it carries out both locally and nationally.
- TAC is committed to involving volunteers in all aspects of its activity. We have developed a volunteering policy to provide a framework for the involvement of volunteers in our work and in meeting our aims.
- TAC is committed to continuous improvement and working within recognised good practice framework, as far as our capacity reasonably allows.
2. Policy Statement:
- TAC values the contribution that volunteers can make to our organisation. They help reflect the diverse interests, needs and resources of the communities we aim to serve and bring a unique perspective to our work. We recognise volunteers as a core part of our team, with a distinctive but complementary role alongside paid staff.
- TAC recognises that volunteering is a two-way process that provides us with the benefits of the skills, experience and enthusiasm that volunteers bring and provides volunteers with opportunities to further enhance or develop skills, gain experience of new working environments and gain personal benefits from the volunteering experience. We are committed to managing and supporting volunteers in a way that ensures that the needs of both parties are met, as far as our capacity reasonably allows.
- TAC strives to create a diverse and inclusive organisation; we are therefore committed to ensuring equality of access to high quality volunteer opportunities and equality of treatment for our volunteers in all our policies and practices.
3. Principles Statement:
TAC recognises four principles fundamental to volunteering. These are Choice, Diversity, Mutual Benefit and Recognition. These inform every aspect of our volunteer policy and programme:
- Choice – volunteering must be a choice freely made by each individual. Freedom to volunteer implies freedom not to become involved.
- Diversity – volunteering should be open to all, no matter what their background, race, colour, nationality, religion, ethnic or national origins, age, gender, marital/partnership status, sexual orientation or disability.
- Mutual Benefit – volunteers offer their contribution and skills unwaged but should benefit in other ways in return for their contribution. Giving time voluntarily must be recognised as establishing a reciprocal relationship in which the volunteer also benefits and feels that his or her contribution is personally fulfilling.
- Recognition – explicit recognition that valuing the contribution of volunteers is fundamental to a fair relationship between volunteers and TAC. This includes recognising the contribution to the organisation, the community, the social economy and wider social objectives.
TAC recognises that the success of its volunteer policy and programme is dependent on the active support of all parts of the organisation.
- Board – the Board has overall responsibility for ensuring that the Volunteering Policy and programme meet the needs of TAC, are implemented effectively and reviewed at appropriate intervals.
- Management – the Chief Executive has operational responsibility for ensuring that all of the policies and related programmes/ procedures are implemented effectively. The Chief Executive will designate a senior member of staff to have responsibility for the implementation and management of the volunteer policy and programme.
- Staff – all staff are responsible for ensuring that this policy, related procedures and other aspects of the volunteering programme are implemented effectively within their projects/services, with any volunteers they supervise and in any other areas of their work.
- Volunteers – all volunteers are responsible for ensuring that this policy is implemented effectively within the volunteering roles they are undertaking.
TAC recognises that anyone has the right to apply to become a volunteer
- Advertisements for volunteers will be placed where they will be available to the wider community for example on the internet, in the Anaphylaxis Campaign magazine or by direct mail.
- Volunteers will need to speak to the relevant member of staff before being taken on and may need to fill in an application form and attend a more formal interview.
- Volunteers will be recruited on the basis that they are to complement the work of paid employees not replace them.
- Volunteers must only perform those functions that are within their personal range of competence and the volunteer remit as agreed by TAC.
- All volunteers must agree with and sign the volunteer agreement.
6. Volunteer Agreement
- TAC recognises that volunteers need a clear understanding of their role, tasks and the responsibilities attached before making a commitment. Each potential volunteer will be given sufficient information in order to allow them to make an informed decision.
- This information will include a task description, this policy, the volunteer agreement, the grievance procedure and any other information that becomes relevant at a given time as decided by the relevant member of TAC staff.
- Volunteers will be required at all times to respond to the directions of the project or staff member. Volunteers remain accountable for their actions to the management team who have oversight of the volunteers work. The manager has the right to require the volunteer to leave the project at any time. Should the volunteer wish to appeal against the manager’s action, this should be submitted to the Volunteer Coordinator.
- Should a volunteer wish to raise a complaint against the management team they should do so through the Anaphylaxis Campaign grievance procedure.
7. Supervision and Support
- Appointed Volunteer Coordinators will, in conjunction with project and team staff, provide the supervision and support that volunteers will need to maintain motivation and commitment.
- A reasonable level of support will be provided for all volunteers.
- All matters of concern, including those relating to personal safety, within the working environment should be reported to a member of the project or staff team in the first instance by the volunteer.
- TAC will provide adequate insurance cover for individuals engaged as volunteers.
- Where necessary, volunteers will agree to a relevant DBS check (Disclosing and Barring Service) and/or sign a child protection agreement.
- Any concerns held by the volunteer on the issue of Health and Safety should be referred to the correct member of staff at the AC.
Volunteers will be reimbursed for any actual expenses incurred during the performance of their tasks where authorisation for such expenditure has been agreed in advance.
9. Intellectual Property
Should a volunteer be working on a project which could lead to a copyright being created (e.g. a database or a publication), any copyright created will be assigned to the Anaphylaxis Campaign.
10. Employment Standing
- Whilst recognising the role and value of volunteers in the work of TAC, it is clearly stated that there is no intention, either implied or assumed, that TAC is entering into any form of employment contract with volunteers engaged on our behalf.
- Arrangements made by the volunteer and TAC are seen as mutually beneficial, fulfilling needs on both sides and providing valuable experience to both parties. No additional payments beyond definite agreed expenses, confirmed by receipts and vouchers supplied by the volunteer will be paid.
- It is also recognised by TAC that the volunteer will retain absolute freedom of choice in the giving of their time and skill to its various projects. TAC recognises that on occasion, unforeseen circumstances may occur that will prevent the volunteer from keeping their commitment to a particular project. In these circumstances, it is asked that as much notice as possible be given so that alternative arrangements can be made.
TAC recognises that its Board members are volunteers. However, where a Board member is acting purely within that role description they are covered by separate Board policies in recognition of that unique role and the statutory obligations placed on them by Charity and Company law. When Board members are undertaking other voluntary activity within TAC their involvement is covered by this policy.
This policy will be reviewed by the Board every three years.
Publication date: March 2017
Review date: March 2020