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Video title: Volunteers and organisations with Kate

Video duration: 3:07

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Video transcript

Kate Aplin: So one thing that organizations have when by working with volunteers is often these are seeds of guilt that you're not paying somebody for doing something.

You've got to remember that volunteers are doing it because they want to do it. You're doing it freely. It's not something that you are having any compulsion to do. So volunteers aren't expecting a payment. Okay. So as organisations or people that work with volunteers. We need to get over our feelings of guilt around the fact that people actually do see their time is the gift. They don't need money back Another thing that's interesting around freely offering to do something, is volunteering can’t give any sense of compulsion behind it. It can’t be a requirement that you do it.

So if, for example, you get in trouble with the law and you're sentenced to community service voluntary, you cannot be told to volunteer to get those community service hours. However, if you want to volunteer and you sign up as a volunteer and choose to volunteer, then those hours can be used as community service because the primary reason is that you are volunteering.

If you are being told to volunteer, it is not counted as community service. We wouldn't actually accept you as a volunteer if there was a reason for being there. Likewise, you may be a few and have unfortunately lost your job or left your job or circumstances have changed. There's a stand down periods between you finishing your employment and being able to receive a benefit.

MSD do say to people, particularly jobseekers, if you sign up as a volunteer, then you'll get three weeks of your stand down period. In other words, you will be able to start working or you'll get your benefits three weeks early If you sign up to volunteer. We actually don't provide any evidence to illustrate that people have volunteered.

The reason for that is when I first started, we would have people coming in and saying, I've been told to come here by my caseworker. We'd go through the whole process of signing up as volunteers, looking for changes for them to volunteer, and we'd never hear from them again. So that check the box to get three weeks off.

They stayed that period, which to me didn't seem very ethical. So we don't do that.


Last updated on Tuesday, 18 July 2023

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