All volunteers will receive an induction to their project with an orientation and training session. In addition to this, all volunteers are welcome to email or make appointments for a chat with their Group Lead/Supervisors to talk about their volunteering and how is going. You can also contact Laura, our Volunteer Coordinator, with every query or question about your volunteering role or experience.
We require all our staff and volunteers to complete a set of training which is online and free of charge as follows:
All staff and volunteers need to complete safeguarding training as soon as you are able. We offer in person training but also access to the Church of England safeguarding training, which is free and available online. There is some contextual religious language in our training and policies, but we understand that this may not be applicable to all our volunteering contexts.
The training can be accessed here:
These should be the default settings.
Once registered click ‘Online Courses’ - the training to complete is ’Safeguarding Basic Awareness (C0)’. The course should take approximately 1 hour to complete.
Fire Safety Awareness Training
This training is provided by Elearning, Health and Safety Portal and you will receive an email with details on how to access the course.
This must be completed annually as agreed with the training provider.
Volunteers working with individuals at risk, including people seeking asylum and refugees or those moving on from homelessness, will be required to complete training on preventing people being drawn into serious and organised crime or who may be at risk of radicalisation.
Choose 'SOUTH EAST' region, and 'CHARITABLE AND VOLUNTARY' sector (For Tutors and LSAs choose ‘EDUCATION FURTHER’ and then TUTOR as role).
This must be completed every two years, as a minimum, with some roles requiring completion annually.
Once finished these trainings please send a copy of the certificates to email@example.com
If you volunteer with food preparation, you must complete or have a current Food Safety Certificate. Please speak to the Volunteer Coordinator for more information regarding this matter. After completion of the training the certificate must be emailed to firstname.lastname@example.org
You may claim reimbursement of any approved expenses, such as travel costs, as agreed with your Group Lead/Supervisor.
Volunteers may be eligible for reimbursement of public transport travel costs upon submission of receipts, or 45p per mile for use of your own vehicle, from your home to the volunteering location. Vehicle mileage is paid up to a 10-mile radius from the volunteering location, so a maximum 20-mile round trip, except in special circumstances.
We provide a confidential service to those we work with. People are entitled to choose when and whether information about them is passed on to other agencies or individuals, unless there is a legal requirement to do so, or a person is at significant risk of harm.
This is a fundamental question of respect; it is an individual’s right to have control over their life. Many of the people we connect with have been through painful and traumatic experiences, which they wish to remain private. This might be due to lifestyle challenges through abuse and exploitation here in the UK, as a woman selling sex, or a refugee; where the political situation in their home country, may give them good reason to mistrust official agencies. Many refugees come from small communities where information spreads quickly, and they may fear or face real danger in this country or abroad. In these cases, they have reason to be cautious about who they confide in, and we need to respect that.
We welcome and support the contribution of volunteers to the projects and recognise the value they bring. We do this in a variety of ways, like sending thank-you cards or celebrating the contribution you make during the annual Volunteer week. Many of our long serving and dedicated volunteers have been awarded 100-hour certificates for their voluntary work by the Mayor of the City of Southampton.
Health and Safety
Developing a culture of Health and Safety through strong policies, practices and procedures is a key part of realising our vision and upholding our values to provide a safe environment for all.
Our Health and Safety processes are designed to help everyone work together to ensure that staff, volunteers and the public are as safe as possible when accessing any of our projects or services. We ask everyone who volunteers or works for our charity to be familiar with relevant Health and Safety policies, procedures, and risk assessments. Health and Safety is a key part of the Induction process for staff and volunteers and maintaining safe practices and environments are responsibilities we all share. We are grateful to all who volunteer and work with our charity for supporting us with these essential processes.
Using your car
Volunteers who agree to use their own cars for business purposes (e.g., attending meetings, giving lifts to clients, staff or volunteers), must have adequate insurance (usually called Business and Social use). Before using your vehicle for such purposes, please complete the Employee Vehicle Check form available from www.citylife.org/hr.
We expect volunteers to only see clients within the allocated volunteering time. If this is not the case, then please let your Group Lead/Supervisor know. Crossing professional boundaries might lead to an unhealthy dependency or raise expectations in the relationship that are not able to be met.
Staff and volunteers must follow the practice of individual projects regarding receiving gifts from clients, being mindful of any power imbalance that might be between them. Gifts should not be encouraged from clients.
Our staff and volunteers may give appropriate small gifts to our clients but none that could encourage a financial relationship, a dependency, or expectations among other clients. If support is coming from the charity, it should be made clear that it is from the charity rather than from you. If you have items you wish to donate to the people we help, please speak to your Group Lead/Supervisor.
Whilst we hope that volunteering will be a positive experience for all our volunteers, sometimes problems occur where you may feel unhappy about certain situations or issues connected with other team members or your role within the organisation. Any complaint you have about your volunteering should be addressed first with your Group Lead/Supervisor. If you feel uncomfortable discussing it with them, please contact either the Volunteer Coordinator or the Project/Church Leader. More details can be found in our complaint procedure (citylife.org.uk/hr).
Taking time off or ending your volunteer time
Please let your Group Lead/Supervisor as soon as possible if you are unable to volunteer or no longer wish to volunteer with us. We appreciate that during your volunteering, issues may arise which may affect your ability to continue in the role. Examples of this include other personal commitments, a change in the organisation or suitability in a particular role. It may also be if there is a breach of our policies or procedures or any undisclosed criminal convictions come to light.
In such cases, an investigation will be undertaken by an appropriate individual, usually this will be a Project/Church Leader. As part of this process, you will be invited to provide a response to the concern(s) raised. Depending on the nature of the concern(s) the outcome of the investigation may consider any or all the following to be appropriate: no further action, a period of monitoring, retraining, appropriate and reasonable adjustments, redeployment to another volunteer role or a decision to end the volunteering appointment. If your volunteer role is ended, you will be notified in writing and given a reason. If you are not satisfied with this outcome, then you may complain, as per our complaint’s procedure.