North Yorkshire county record office - volunteer policy
The page below shows the volunteer policy for North Yorkshire County Record Office.
This policy is divided into the following sections:
- Context of the volunteer policy
- Aims of the volunteer policy
- Principles of good practice
- Volunteer recruitment
- Support for volunteers
- Rights and responsibilities
- Relationship with paid staff
- Review of the volunteer policy
1. Context of the volunteer policy
The function of North Yorkshire County Record Office is the acquisition, preservation and provision of public access to archive material for the whole of the county of North Yorkshire. We care for millions of documents of all shapes, sizes and ages which are housed in one purpose-adapted repository in Northallerton.
North Yorkshire County Record Office is committed to encouraging and developing volunteer involvement in its work where appropriate. It recognises that volunteers can make an important contribution to achieving its aims and objectives, complementing the work of paid members of staff. Volunteering has also been shown to benefit the volunteers themselves by developing skills and confidence.
For the purposes of this policy, a volunteer is defined as an individual who provides a service of their own free will, under the supervision of paid staff and without monetary remuneration, in order to assist in the achievement of the County Record Office organisational objectives.
This policy should be read in conjunction with the North Yorkshire County Council equal opportunities policy. This can be found on the Equality and diversity page.
2. Aims of the volunteer policy
The aims of this volunteer policy are:
- To clarify the role of volunteers, their rights and responsibilities and to establish clear principles for their involvement with North Yorkshire County Record Office;
- To confirm the County Record Office commitment to involving volunteers with its work;
- To address the relationship between volunteers and paid members of staff;
- To establish a framework for the recruitment and support of volunteers; and
- To acknowledge the contribution made by volunteers to the work of North Yorkshire County Record Office.
3. Principles of good practice
Our principles of good practice are:
- Volunteer work will complement, not replace, the work of paid members of staff;
- Volunteer work will be of sufficient scope and duration to justify the use of paid staff time and resources in training and supervision; and
- Tasks to be undertaken by volunteers will be clearly defined so that volunteers and paid staff are sure of their respective roles and responsibilities.
4. Volunteer recruitment
Our policy on volunteer recruitment is that:
- Information about volunteer work will be made widely available, including information about volunteer projects, necessary skills and time commitment;
- Every effort will be made to match a volunteer's knowledge and skills to the projects available;
- Potential volunteers will be required to complete an application form and to attend a preliminary interview before any volunteer work can commence;
- North Yorkshire County Record Office reserves the right not to accept a volunteer or to terminate an arrangement if it is considered necessary; and
- The North Yorkshire County Council equal opportunities policy will be adhered to when recruiting and selecting volunteers.
5. Support for volunteers
Our policy on supporting volunteers is that:
- An induction to the County Record Office and appropriate training will be provided for each volunteer;
- All volunteers will have access to a named member of County Record Office staff who will provide appropriate support and supervision; and
- Regular review sessions will be held with each volunteer to resolve any problems and to assess progress.
6. Rights and responsibilities
North Yorkshire County Record Office recognises the rights of volunteers to:
- Have a clear understanding of what is expected of them and to receive any necessary training;
- Have specified lines of supervision and support;
- Gain enjoyment and satisfaction from the work they do;
- Be given clear information about the County Record Office, including its health and safety procedures;
- Work in safe working conditions;
- Raise any problems or grievances and have them properly considered;
- Ask for a reference; and
- Withdraw from volunteer working.
North Yorkshire County Record Office expects that volunteers will:
- Comply with existing policies and procedures and work within agreed guidelines and remits;
- Carry out voluntary work to the best of their ability;
- Behave in a safe, responsible and professional manner whilst working as a volunteer;
- Work at times agreed with North Yorkshire County Record Office and give notice of any variations;
- Respect the confidentiality of sensitive information about North Yorkshire County Record Office business or within the records held by the County Record Office;
- Attend training and support sessions as agreed; and
- Give North Yorkshire County Record Office reasonable notice if withdrawing from voluntary work.
7. Relationship with paid staff
Our policy on the relationship between paid staff and volunteers is that:
- A good working relationship will be encouraged between paid staff and volunteers and steps will be taken to ensure that both are clear about their respective roles and contributions;
- The roles of volunteers and paid staff will be complementary and mutually supportive;
- Volunteers should be aware that paid staff have many duties and might not always be able to give volunteers immediate attention; and
- In the event of industrial action, volunteers may continue with their regular work provided supervision is available, but will not be asked to carry out the work of paid staff.
8. Review of the volunteer policy
This policy document was issued in June 2007. It will be reviewed and updated as necessary and at least every five years.