Policy and Guidelines for volunteering with Spectrum Community Arts Ltd.
This policy sets out the broad principles for voluntary involvement in Spectrum Community Arts Ltd. It is of relevance to all within the organisation, including volunteers, staff, members, and those elected or appointed to positions of responsibility. This policy is endorsed by Jade Cook and will be reviewed yearly, to ensure that it remains appropriate to the needs of Spectrum Community Arts Ltd and its volunteers.
Spectrum Community Arts Ltd acknowledges that volunteers contribute in many ways, that their contribution is unique and that volunteering can benefit users of services, staff, local communities and the volunteers themselves. Spectrum Community Arts Ltd values the contribution made by volunteers and is committed to involving volunteers in appropriate positions alongside self-employed staff.
The purpose of this policy is to enable volunteers to be recruited, supported and managed in a way that reflects the values of the organisation. Spectrum Community Arts Ltd seeks to ensure that the relationship the organisation has with its volunteers is of a non-contractual nature and that no legal contract or relationship of employment is created.
3. Organisation’s Aims
To provide performing arts workshops for people with disabilities and additional needs.
To use the performing arts to help develop self-esteem, self-expression and build friendships
To give the participants a place they feel safe and a club to which they belong
To give the parent/carers an opportunity for a short period of respite
4. Organisation’s Structure
Spectrum Community Arts Ltd values every member of our team, including volunteers and recognises the important role volunteers play in enabling the organisation to deliver its services.
This policy is underpinned by the following principles
A recognition that volunteering is something an individual chooses to do and that every individual has the right to volunteer without experiencing coercion or discrimination
A commitment to ensuring equality of access to volunteering opportunities and equality of treatment for all volunteers
A recognition that volunteers contribute their time, skills, knowledge and enthusiasm to the organisation and that, by doing so, they can often enhance or complement those that currently exist within the organisation
A commitment to ensuring that volunteers are valued and integrated within the organisational structure and that processes are in place for them to contribute to the work of the organisation
A recognition that volunteers need satisfying tasks that is personally fulfilling and opportunities for personal development and a commitment to helping volunteers meet these needs and to providing appropriate support and training for them to their activities efficiently
A commitment that Spectrum Community Arts Ltd will not involve volunteers as a means of replacing paid staff
A commitment that all Spectrum Community Arts Ltd staff will be clear about the role of volunteers and work positively with volunteers
A recognition that the volunteer role is bound only in honour, trust and mutual understanding. No enforceable obligation, contractual or otherwise, can be imposed on volunteers to attend, give or be set a minimum amount of time to carry out the tasks involved in their voluntary activity. Likewise the organisation cannot be compelled to provide either regular tasks, payment or other benefit for any activity undertaken by the volunteer.
A recognition that although volunteers offer time freely and willingly without binding obligation, there is a presumption of mutual support and reliability. Reciprocal expectations are acknowledged – both of what the organisation expects of volunteers and what volunteers expect of the organisation.
Spectrum Community Arts Ltd 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.
Step 1: Volunteering opportunities will be widely promoted in ways that makes them accessible to all members of the community.
Step 2: An interested potential volunteer will make contact with Spectrum Community Arts Ltd. It will be mutually agreed which sessions, activities, tasks will be most suitable for the volunteer to be involved with.
Step 3: The potential volunteer will complete and return the application form and Spectrum Community Arts Ltd will set about obtaining the two references.
Step 4: The potential volunteer will be sent an information pack providing them with helpful tips and useful information before attending their first session.
Step 5: The potential volunteer will be invited to a taster session where they will get the opportunity to meet the leader, assistant, other volunteers and participants.
This is the perfect opportunity for the potential volunteer to ask any questions and they will go through the volunteer agreement with the leader.
Volunteers who are considered unsuitable for a particular task will either be offered alternative voluntary involvement with the organisation or referred to the nearest Volunteer Centre.
Step 6: Due to the nature of the role, the volunteer will be carrying out activities with vulnerable groups (children and/or adults) and therefore must undergo an enhanced Disclosure and Barring Services (DBS) check.
More detailed information will be made available specific to legislative requirements and to the particular volunteer position.
Step 7: Once Spectrum Community Arts Ltd has seen the DBS certificate the volunteer can start their volunteering role.
Volunteers will have a clear and concise task description, which will be subsequently reviewed regularly.
Volunteers will be properly briefed about the activities to be undertaken and given all the necessary information to enable them to perform with confidence.
7. Support and Supervision
All volunteers will be made aware of and have access to all the organisation's relevant policies, including those relating to volunteering and safeguarding vulnerable groups.
Volunteers will have a named person to whom they can take their volunteering concerns and seek guidance and support. This person is Jade Cook.
Volunteers will have access to regular group and 1:1 support and supervision sessions. This will enable both the volunteer and the supervisor to identify, monitor and evaluate the volunteer's involvement, recognise achievements and identify individual training needs, including that relevant to their particular volunteering role and to their wider personal development.
Spectrum Community Arts Ltd offers annual basic safeguarding awareness training for all volunteers, directors and self-employed members of staff. We will also offer half-termly bitezise awareness sessions on relevant topics/issues.
Spectrum Community Arts Ltd highly values the involvement of volunteers within the organisation and as such likes to formally recognise the contribution of the volunteers. This is done through a variety of methods including articles in newspapers, certificates and thank you letters and/or cards.
9. Volunteer Co-ordination
All volunteers will have a nominated member of staff or volunteer to offer guidance and advice to help the volunteer carry out tasks effectively. Volunteers will be informed of who to contact to receive support and supervision.
The nominated post holder with overall responsibility for the development of voluntary activities within the organisation is Jade Cook, proprietor. This person is responsible for the management and welfare of the organisation's volunteers.
10. Data Protection and Confidentiality
All names and information about participants must remain confidential. Volunteers understand that they cannot discuss participants outside of sessions due to safeguarding reasons.
As outlined in the safeguarding policy, if any participants share concerning information with you, this must ONLY be shared in line with the reporting procedures outlined in the safeguarding policy.
Spectrum Community Arts Ltd will keep all volunteers’ personal information secure and confidential in line with GDPR.
All volunteers will be required to sign and adhere to the organisation’s confidentiality statement.
11. Settling Differences
The organisation aims to treat all volunteers fairly, objectively and consistently. The organisation seeks to ensure that volunteers' views are heard, noted and acted upon promptly and aim for a positive and amicable solution.
The designated officer referred to above is responsible for handling problems regarding volunteer complaints or conduct and these should be referred to her. In the event of a problem, all relevant facts should be obtained as quickly as possible. Support will be provided by the organisation to the volunteer while it endeavours to resolve the problem in an informal manner.
If there is a problem with the designated officer volunteers should refer to one of Spectrum Community Arts Ltd’s directors.
If a volunteer’s behaviour is repeatedly or seriously unacceptable, they may be asked to change their role, or to leave the organization.
All volunteers involved within the organisation are covered by Spectrum Community Arts Ltd’s employer’s liability insurance.
This insurance is reviewed and renewed annually.
Due to Spectrum Community Arts Ltd being a not-for-profit organisation we are unable to reimburse travel expenses to weekly clubs except in extreme circumstances. This should be agreed with a director.
Volunteers involved at the performing arts day camps are entitled to reimbursement of all reasonable expenses and will be encouraged to claim expenses for:
Travel to and from the location of the day camp
A meal and/or light refreshment that has been bought specifically for the day camp
Any other reasonable out-of-pocket expenses that are agreed with a director
A receipt is required along with a completed expenses form for any expenses to be reimbursed.
14. Leaving the organisation
Spectrum Community Arts Ltd recognises that volunteers give their time freely and that their circumstances and availability may alter, resulting in them leaving the organisation. Volunteers have the right to leave at any time; however, to assist with ensuring continuity of service, we would welcome as much notice as possible. The organisation would also welcome informal feedback on the volunteer’s experience of volunteering with the organisation.
Spectrum Community Arts Ltd is happy to provide volunteers with references to enable them to undertake other volunteering opportunities or paid employment. This may be during or after their time with the organisation.
16. Monitoring and Review
The effectiveness of this policy, and its procedures, will be monitored and amended as and when necessary by the Directors. The policy will also be reviewed every year as part of a continuing review of organisational policies.