Overall Policy

Our mission is to promote the independence, physical and mental well-being of the local population including older, isolated and vulnerable people within the towns of Ivybridge and the surrounding area.

Our aim is to provide a service of home visits, offering support including companionship, help with socialising, transport to non-medical appointments, shopping, collecting prescriptions, dog walking, low-level help in the home and carer relief.

The achievement of the goals of this organisation is best served by the active participation of citizens of the community. To this end, the organisation accepts and encourages the involvement of volunteers at all levels in the organisation and within all appropriate programmes and activities.

Purpose of the volunteer policy

The purpose of the policy is to provide overall guidance and direction to staff and volunteer engaged in volunteer involvement and management efforts. Matters in areas not specifically covered by the policy shall be decided by the committee.

Definition of ‘volunteer’

A ‘volunteer’ is anyone who without compensation or expectation of compensation beyond reimbursement of expenses incurred in the course of his or her voluntary duties performs a task at the direction of and on behalf of the organisation. A ‘volunteer’ must be officially accepted and enrolled by the organisation prior to performance of the task. 

Volunteer rights and responsibilities

Volunteers are viewed as a valuable resource to this organisation, its staff, and its clients. Volunteers shall be extended to the right to be given meaningful assignments, the right to be treated as equal co-workers, the right to effective supervision, the right to full involvement and participation, and the right for recognition for work done. In return, volunteers should agree to actively perform their duties to the best of their abilities and to remain loyal to the values, goals and procedures of Ivybridge Caring.

Volunteer Management Procedures

Maintenance of records

A system of records will be maintained on each volunteer, including dates of service, and duties performed. Volunteer personnel records shall be accorded the same confidentiality as staff personnel records.

Representation of the organisation

Prior to any action or statement which might significantly affect or obligate Ivybridge Caring, volunteers should seek prior consultation and approval from the coordinator or the commitee. These actions may include, but are not limited to, public statements to the press, lobbying efforts with other organisations, collaborations or joint initiatives, or any agreements involving contractual or other financial obligations. Volunteers are authorised to act as representatives of the organisation as specifically indicated within their job descriptions and only to the extent of such descriptions.

Confidentiality

Volunteers are responsible for maintaining the confidentiality of all propriety or privileged information to which they are exposed while serving as a volunteer, as laid out within the Confidentiality Policy.

Volunteer Recruitment

Recruitment

Volunteers shall be recruited without regard to gender, disability, age, race or other condition. The sole qualification for recruitment shall be suitability to perform a task on behalf of the organisation. Volunteers may be recruited either through an interest in specific functions or through a general interest in volunteering which will be later matched with a specific function.

Application

All applicants will have to complete the Ivybridge Caring Volunteer Application Form prior to being invited to attend an interview.

Interviewing

All volunteers will be interviewed to ascertain their suitability for and interest in that position. The interview should determine the motivations of the volunteer, the commitment to fulfil the requirements of the position, and should answer any questions that the volunteer might have about the position. Interviews may be conducted either by the coordinator and a member of the committee or two members of the committee.

References and Criminal Records Check

If the interview is successful two character references will be taken up. Also, as volunteers will be in contact with vulnerable persons, a criminal record check with the criminal records bureau will be made. Volunteers who refuse permission for conduct of these checks will not be accepted for placement with clients.

 Pre-commencement Visit.

Prior to commencement of volunteering for Ivybridge Caring, a committee member or the Co-ordinator will visit each volunteer in their own home to ascertain areas of strength, special skills, interests and availability. Any concerns or phobias, allergies etc can also be discussed, and all of this will help when matching volunteers with service users.

Volunteer Training

Induction Training

There will be a specifically designed induction training prepared and delivered by a Ivybridge Caring trainer, which includes:

  • Background to the organisation and its work.
  • The role of the volunteer
  • Instruction on all relevant policies including this Volunteer policy, Confidentiality, Health and Safety, Equal Opportunities and Diversity, Working with Vulnerable Adults and Complaints Procedure.
  • Recommended Procedures in the work.
  • Expectations
  • Other information as appropriate

Additional Training

Volunteers will be offered the opportunity to carry out additional training as deemed appropriate by the committee.

Volunteer Supervision

Lines of communication

Volunteers are entitled to all necessary information pertinent to the performance of their work assignments. Accordingly, volunteers should be included and have access to appropriate information, memo, materials and meetings relevant to the work assignments.

Day to Day Supervision

Each volunteer who is accepted to a position with Ivybridge Caring must have a clearly identified supervisor (either a member of staff or a committee member) who is responsible for direct management of that volunteer. This supervisor shall be responsible for day-to-day management and guidance for the work of the volunteer, and shall be available by to the volunteer for consultation and assistance.

Formal Supervision

Every 6 weeks the volunteer will have a formal supervision session with their identified supervisor. Initially the supervision will be face to face. However with experienced volunteers it may be carried out by telephone.

Volunteer Support & Recognition

Reimbursement of expenses

Volunteers are eligible for reimbursement of reasonable expenses incurred while undertaking business for SHCVS. Prior approval must be sought for any major expenditure.

Access to organisation property and materials

As appropriate, volunteers shall have access to property of Ivybridge Caring and those materials necessary to fulfil their duties, and shall receive training in the operation of any equipment.

Insurance

Liability and accident insurance is provided for all volunteers engaged in the work of Ivybridge Caring.

Recognition

The committee and staff of Ivybridge Caring shall endeavour to recognise the service of volunteers on a regular basis throughout the year. These methods of both formal and informal recognition shall range from simple ‘Thank You’s’ to a concerted effort to include volunteers as full participants in decision making and implementation for projects which involve the volunteer.

Tel: 01752 891928 Office hours Wednesday & Thursday 9:30 - 12:00 or Mobile: 07791 239357 Weekdays
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