Policy on Volunteering
Kairos Women Working Together (WWT) believes in the value and dignity of all women. We aim to support, empower, and give a voice to women at risk of or subject to sexual exploitation, including those caught up in sex work and those aspiring to leave it.
We do this by offering safe women-only spaces and access to other professional services.
We offer a listening ear and give a voice through advocacy and we aim to create a range of opportunities for development, change and growth. In addition we aim to support family and child contact in a positive environment.
Kairos recruits female-only volunteers to support female sex workers through involvement in the Drop In and street outreach, the WINGS day session and through our one-to-one Befriending scheme. Volunteers also offer support through running activities and additional support to the running of the organisation.
Purpose of this Policy
The purpose of this volunteering policy (the Policy) is to provide overall guidance and direction to staff and volunteers. The Policy is intended for internal management guidance only and does not constitute a binding contractual or personnel agreement. Kairos reserves the right to change any aspect of the Policy at any time.
The Policy will be made available to all volunteers and staff in addition to the documents in the appendix.
As far as reasonably possible, recruitment will be managed by the Volunteer Coordinator, who will have primary contact with all potential volunteers.
Kairos will use appropriate means to advertise for volunteers locally that takes into account the principles laid out in the Equal Opportunities Policy.
Kairos will also only recruit women who are eighteen years or over.
Volunteers will be recruited on a pro-active basis when spaces become available in the various schemes. When recruiting, volunteers will be given a role description and volunteers will be recruited to undertake the specific tasks identified. The applicant will be asked to complete a registration form and provide two character references. If there are no current volunteering vacancies the registration form will be kept on file and the applicant will be notified when Kairos is recruiting. Where reasonably practical, volunteers with additional support needs will be assisted in making an application.
Volunteers will be invited to attend an informal interview where they will be provided with information on the work of Kairos, the specific duties and responsibilities of the volunteer role and the conditions of appointment. The interview will, as far as possible, be conducted by two members of staff. During the interview the interviewer(s) will seek to ensure the volunteer role matches the specific needs and interests of the volunteer.
Acceptance and Appointment
Notification of acceptance / non acceptance of a volunteer will first be given verbally and also in writing; either by post, or by email.
Following appointment, volunteers will be invited to attend an induction session(s). No volunteer will be permitted to commence volunteering until they have completed the full induction. During the induction volunteers will be given an overview of the organisation, more details about the sessions at which they will be volunteering, guidance about personal safety and an overview of the client group they will be supporting. They will also receive copies of all relevant policies and information.
Following their induction volunteers will be invited to attend their first session, where they will shadow a member of staff. Volunteers doing the Evening Drop In will also be given additional training on doing street outreach.
Volunteer appointments will be offered on the condition of completing a 3 month probationary period. During this period Kairos and the volunteer will assess their suitability to the role. At the end of the 3 month period, the volunteer and the Volunteer Coordinator will review the experience and agree to: continue the volunteering; re-assign the volunteer to a more suitable post or; terminate the relationship.
Training and continuous development
Kairos is committed to developing the skills of both staff and volunteers. Additional training and development opportunities will be made available to volunteers provided by Kairos or an external provider where possible.
Supervision and support
The Volunteer Coordinator will be responsible for the day-to-day management and guidance. She will provide regular support and supervision sessions and annual reviews.
Payment of out of pocket expenses
Kairos agrees to pay volunteers any out of pocket expenses incurred whilst volunteering for the organisation, in accordance with the Volunteering Expenses Policy.
All staff, volunteers and trustee are expected to comply with Kairos’ Confidentiality Policy.
All volunteers are covered by Kairos’ insurance policy whilst they are on the premises, or engaged with work as a volunteer. It is the responsibility of the volunteers to inform their motor insurance company that they are using their car in the act of volunteering. The insurance policy will be made available upon request.
The relationship between Kairos and its volunteers is entirely voluntary and does not imply any contract. However, it is important that Kairos is able to maintain its agreed standards of service to the clients who use and it is also important that volunteers should enjoy making their contribution to this service.
If a volunteer’s role does not meet with the organisation’s standards, or if a volunteer has an issue with Kairos, or someone involved in Kairos, the issue should be brought to the attention of the Volunteer Coordinator, or the Project Manager, in accordance with the Grievance Procedure.
Volunteers may be dismissed if they do not adhere to the policies and procedures of Kairos, fail to perform their volunteer role or commit and act of gross misconduct or insubordination, commit theft of property or misuse of Kairos’ equipment, or are unable to volunteer as a result of alcohol or drug misuse.
Whilst we hope volunteers will stay with us for at least twelve months, volunteers may resign from Kairos at any time. Notification of resignation should be given in writing; either by post, or email.
When a volunteer leaves Kairos, they will be invited to attend a meeting with the Volunteer Coordinator to review their time with Kairos.