Does your organisation rely on volunteers? Are they well managed?
Many organisations rely on the support of volunteers to deliver their activities. We provide some information below on the rights of volunteers:
Volunteers do not have a contract of employment, so they don’t have employment rights.
It is recommended that volunteers are given an agreement that explains:
• the level of supervision and support they will receive and from whom
• training requirements
• information relating to insurance cover for them in their capacity as volunteers
• health and safety issues
• any expenses to which the volunteer is entitled
A volunteer agreement sets out what the volunteer can expect from the organisation but does not form a contract.
A volunteer should not be paid for time, but can receive expenses – usually limited to food, drink, travel or any equipment needed.
There is no upper age limit on volunteering. However, some organisations’ insurance policies don’t cover volunteers if they are under 16.
If a person has a criminal record they can still volunteer in most roles, depending on their offences but may have to complete a Disclosure check.