Volunteer Policy

Introduction

The Amber Trust’s vision is for blind and partially sighted children, including those with additional disabilities, to have the best possible chance to meet their musical needs and aspirations and fulfil their potential.

This policy cover those volunteers who would like to contribute to the Amber Trust’s activities by:

  • Helping deliver services to meet the needs of our clients;
  • Providing new skills and perspectives;
  • Providing administrative support; and
  • Helping run events

Another important volunteering role is that of our fundraisers who are acting ‘in aid of’ the Amber Trust and they will be asked to sign up to our ‘Fundraisers’ code’.

Volunteering is vital to The Amber Trust. We don’t receive any government funding towards delivering our programmes and volunteers can make a key contribution towards The Amber Trust’s aims and objectives.

Principles

This Volunteering Policy is underpinned by the following principles:

  • The Amber Trust will ensure that volunteers are properly integrated into the organisational structure;
  • The Amber Trust expects that Trustees and staff will work positively with volunteers and, where appropriate, will actively seek to involve them in their work;
  • The Amber Trust recognises that volunteers require satisfying work and will help volunteers do their work effectively.

Recruitment

The Amber Trust is committed to equal opportunities and believes that volunteering should be open to all regardless of race, gender, religion, sexual orientation, political beliefs or offending background that does not create a risk to vulnerable groups including children. The acceptance of volunteer assistance for a particular role is made on merit, the sole selection criterion being the individual’s suitability to carry out agreed tasks. Information about the volunteer not relevant to the performance of the volunteering tasks concerned will be disregarded by the organisation in terms of recruitment and selection.

Volunteers will be given an appropriate level of scrutiny for the volunteering task to be assigned to them.

More detailed information will be made available specific to the particular volunteer position.

Support, Supervision and Recognition

Volunteers will have a designated Trustee, who will be responsible for providing information on The Amber Trust, its policies and provide support for the duration of their volunteering assignments. Volunteers will be properly briefed about the activities to be undertaken and given all the necessary information to enable them to perform with confidence.

Volunteers will be given the opportunity, where relevant, to share their views and opinions with the organisation’s Trustees and staff.

Volunteers will be given formal recognition of their contribution (e.g. internal awards, articles in newspapers and newsletters, thank you letters etc.).

Expenses

The Amber Trust recognises that the reimbursement of expenses incurred in travelling to and from the place of volunteering or in the course of volunteering is important from an equal opportunities point of view. The Amber Trust’s volunteers are able to claim reasonable out of pocket expenses, subject to the production of receipts as evidence of the expenditure. What can be reclaimed from the organisation and the calculation of expenses will be explained to the volunteer before they start any activity likely to give rise to expenses. The Amber Trust has a consistent approach to the reimbursement of expenses which are the same for volunteers, staff and Trustees etc. and are as approved by the Inland Revenue.

Insurance

The Amber Trust ‘s liability insurance policies include the activities of volunteers and liability towards them.

The organisation does not insure the volunteer’s personal possessions against loss or damage.

Confidentiality

The Amber Trust will advise the volunteer on its confidentiality policy and procedures, where relevant. This would include those relating to personal information held by the organisation relating to the volunteer.

Resolving Problems
The Amber Trust aims to treat all volunteers fairly, objectively and consistently and seeks to ensure that volunteers’ views are heard, noted and acted upon promptly. The Trust will aim for a positive and amicable solution in accordance with its complaints procedure.

Summary: Rights and Responsibilities

The organisation recognises the rights of volunteers to:

  • know what is (and what is not) expected of them
  • have adequate support in their volunteering
  • receive appreciation
  • volunteer in a safe environment
  • be insured
  • know their rights and responsibilities if something goes wrong
  • receive relevant out-of-pocket expenses
  • receive appropriate training
  • be free from discrimination
  • be offered the opportunity for personal development

The organisation expects volunteers to:

  • be reliable and honest
  • respect confidentiality
  • make the most of training and support opportunities
  • carry out tasks in a way that reflects the aims and values of the organisation
  • carry out tasks within agreed guidelines
  • respect the work of the organisation and not bring it into disrepute
  • comply with the organisation’s policies

Policy Review

This Volunteer policy is freely accessible to all. It is reviewed regularly and updated as required.

Date adopted: 28.04.2015

Date for review: 08.05.17