Volunteers give time, carrying out activities that aim to benefit community or society. Volunteers are unpaid and choose how they wish to give their time. Volunteering is the volunteer's choice, volunteer roles are not the same as employee roles and volunteers are not a replacement for paid staff and are not covered by employment law.
Volunteering takes place in every sector from charities and not for profits to the public and private sector. The activities volunteers take part in are diverse, ranging from campaigning and fundraising to mentoring and befriending, running events and sports clubs to more formal roles like trusteeships.
Volunteers should, of course, be treated fairly and with respect. Partners on our hub are vetted to ensure that they are a genuine charity or non-profit organisation. As a guide, any organisation asking you to volunteer should:
- avoid language that suggests employment (for example, refer to a contract)
- have separate processes for recruiting and supporting staff and volunteers
- talk about what they would like from volunteers rather than saying they 'must’ or ‘have to’ do anything
- not sanction volunteers for not meeting expectations
- avoid perks that could look like payment (for example, training not needed for the role)
- not ask volunteers to book or apply for holiday or time off
- pay out-of-pocket expenses instead of a fixed amount.
If you have any questions about volunteering for organisations that are not listed on our hub, please contact us – email@example.com