This is my first post so apologies if this has come up before. I’m currently working as a Volunteering Facilitator for the University of Cumbria Students’ Union and part of my role is to work with students to find out their interests and give them options for the types of volunteering they can do and the organisations they can get involved with, along with coordinating one off volunteering projects. At the moment when students register as a volunteer we send them an email with all the info they need to know about volunteering which is very lengthy and I’m sure no one really reads it.
I’d like to introduce some proper training so that we can retain volunteers and support them before they go to volunteer with different organisations around the area. Does anyone have any good advice on what sort of things would be good to cover in the first session with potential volunteers. I’d like to make it really informal and quite short but what are the key things people need to know? I’d like to make the sessions really interactive and any tips and examples people have would be very much appreciated.
I’d strongly recommend talking to your local volunteer centre about this, and looking at the Volunteering England website.
I have developed a lot of induction materials and training for different volunteer roles, but they are all very specific to each organisation and role – frankly any organisation taking volunteers should be responsible for a good induction for them there, rather than beforehand – but suspect that is sometimes more a wish than reality!
One doc I have developed that might be of interest is a one-page “tips for getting the most out of your volunteering placement” – I have 2 versions, one for those long-term or never previously employed, and another more general one for those looking to add to professional skills and to improve their CV’s through volunteering – can e-mail it directly to you if useful? Would always recommend adapting it for your specific client group (students) though.