This is an Agreement between:
- Volunteers (referred to in this document as ‘the volunteer’ or ‘you’) and
- Uniting Victoria and Tasmania (sometimes referred to in this document as ‘Uniting’ or ‘we’).
This Agreement is not intended to be a legally binding contract between parties, and it may be cancelled at any time by either Uniting or you.
You are a volunteer
The role you are applying for at Uniting is a volunteer role. This means you are not an employee of, or contractor to, Uniting and, if you accept the role, you perform all duties on a voluntary basis and you will not receive remuneration or payment for your work, other than reasonable reimbursement of expenses (see below at paragraph 9).
Neither Uniting nor you intend any employment or contractual relationship to be created (you are not an employee, independent contractor or consultant at Uniting). If this changes at any time, and there is a possibility that you might perform paid work for the organisation or be involved in vocational training, we will discuss this and document the arrangement in a formal contract.
What you can expect when volunteering with Uniting
Uniting values its volunteers and we will endeavour to provide you with:
- a written position description so you understand your role and the tasks you are authorised to perform
- a full induction, orientation and training relating to the volunteer role
- a safe environment in which to perform your role
- respect for your privacy, including keeping your private information confidential
- a supervisor, for support, and so that you have the opportunity to ask questions and get feedback (see paragraph 4 below)
- reimbursement for your reasonable expenses so you are not out-of-pocket as a result of volunteering for us (for further information see paragraph 9 below), and
- insurance to cover you for the volunteer duties you are authorised to perform (see paragraph 10 below).
What Uniting asks of its volunteers?
We ask that you:
- Support Uniting’s purpose and values
- participate in all relevant induction and training sessions
- only perform duties you are authorised to perform and always operate under the direction and supervision of Uniting employees and follow reasonable directions and instructions
- understand and comply with the organisation’s policies and procedures including;
- Child Safety policy
- Reportable conduct & mandatory reporting policy
- Risk management policy
- Work Health Safety & Wellbeing policy
- Environment policy
- Code of conduct
- Conflict of interest policy
- Issues resolution policy
- People & culture policy
- Pre-employment check policy
- Recruitment & selection policy
- ICT acceptable use policy & protocol
- notify your supervisor or another member of employee of any health and safety issues or potentially hazardous situations that may pose a risk to you or others and report any accidents or incidents relating to employees, volunteers, or the workplace
- behave appropriately and courteously to all people and the public in the course of your role
- use any property or equipment given to you in your role safely and only for purpose of the role and return it to the organisation when you finish your volunteer role
- let us know if you wish to change the nature of your contribution (for example, hours, role) to Uniting at any time
- let us know immediately if there is anything, or anything arises, that makes you unsuitable or unable to legally carry out your volunteer role (for example, your role requires you to drive and you lose your license or you injure yourself)
- comply with the law at all times, and
- be open and honest in your dealings with us and let us know if we can improve our volunteer program and the support that you receive.
Your contact person at Uniting will be: Provided upon commencement. If you have any questions or concerns about your role, your health and safety, or if there is any assistance you need to help you undertake your role, please contact your supervisor as soon as possible.
Position description and details
We ask that you only perform duties you are authorised to perform, always operate under the direction and supervision of Uniting’s employees and follow reasonable directions and instructions. This is particularly important for health, safety and insurance reasons (see paragraph 6 below). We have developed a position description to help you understand your role and the tasks you are authorised to perform and tasks that are prohibited. If you are unsure whether a particular task or work is part of your role, or who you can and can’t receive directions and instructions from please don’t hesitate to talk to your contact person.
The health and safety of you and others
At Uniting volunteer safety, and the safety of everyone who is involved in our organisation, is a priority.
Uniting has safety obligations towards:
- you in your capacity as a volunteer at Uniting and
- the people that you interact with as a part of your volunteer role.
It’s important to understand that you may be personally liable (that is legally or financially responsible) for any harm or damage caused to yourself or others if you act outside of the role description, outside of the instructions given to you or you are affected by drugs or alcohol when you are volunteering.
It’s therefore important that you only perform the tasks in your position description and that you follow the instructions of your supervisor and Uniting’s employees.
In Victoria, the following law applies:
- Occupational Health and Safety Act 2004 (Vic)
- Occupational Health and Safety Regulations 2017 (Vic)
In Tasmania, the following law applies:
- Work Health and Safety Act 2012 (Tas)
- Work Health and Safety Regulations 2012 (Tas)
Also, there may be other legal actions (such as negligence claims) that mean we always need to consider safety issues. Under the above law and other laws, Uniting has a duty of care to minimise risks to everyone affected by its conduct (including paid employees, carers and volunteers). It also means that as a volunteer, you may have duties under relevant laws too.
- taking reasonable care for your own health and safety
- taking reasonable care for the health and safety of others
- complying with any reasonable instruction by Uniting
- letting Uniting know of any concerns you may have about safety or fitness in performing our role, and
- cooperating with any reasonable policies and procedures of Uniting.
We will provide you with a full induction, safety equipment and role training when you commence with our organisation. However, please do not hesitate to talk to your supervisor at any time if you have any health and safety concerns.
Induction and training
Uniting is committed to providing suitable training in support of the organisational policies relevant to your role as a volunteer. For this reason, it’s our policy that all volunteers undertake organisational and local induction and training at Uniting before starting their volunteer role. Your supervisor will confirm the details of the induction and training schedule with you.
Information we require before you can start in the volunteer role
Before you can commence the volunteer role, we need the following information:
- Completed application form
- National Criminal History Check (at our cost)
- International Criminal History Check (If required) (at your cost)
- A copy of your driver’s license (If required)
- Reference checks
- In Victoria: Working with Children’s Check
- In Tasmania: Working with Vulnerable People registration
Volunteer expenses and other benefits
As a volunteer, Uniting will reimburse you for any pre-approved reasonable out-of-pocket expenses that you incur when performing authorised tasks associated with your role. We do this to ensure that you are not financially disadvantaged as a result of your volunteer role with us. These payments are not remuneration or wages. You will need prior approval and will always need to produce receipts. We may sometimes provide you with other benefits as part of your volunteering role (examples include training, free food, accommodation, event entry, clothing or equipment). Where this occurs, it is on a gratuitous basis at the discretion of Uniting and is not payment in lieu of salary.
We are committed to providing adequate insurance cover for volunteers while carrying out their volunteering roles that have been approved and authorised by us.
Uniting has the following insurances:
- Public and Products Liability
- Professional Indemnity
- Entity Fidelity
- Personal Accident
- Medical Indemnity
- Volunteer Care Givers Property.
To ensure this insurance covers you for any incidents that occur while you are volunteering with us, you need to:
- report an incident as soon as it has occurred to your supervisor
- complete the appropriate incident report form
- sign in each time you volunteer
We want to let you know that the following events are unlikely to be covered by our insurance:
- actions that are beyond the scope of your volunteer role, or that occur without appropriate authority or permission from us
- criminal activity (including criminal charges arising out of driving incidents), and
- dishonest or reckless activities (for example turning up intoxicated).
Volunteers are likely to be given access to Uniting’s confidential information as part of, or to assist them with, their role. Confidential information includes any information about Uniting, its business, services and consumers which has been designated by Uniting as confidential or which is, by its nature, confidential or proprietary to Uniting. You are not permitted to use or disclose any confidential information for any purpose other than the proper discharge of your duties as a volunteer of Uniting.
You agree to transfer all intellectual property rights and interests (including copyright) in any ideas or materials you create relating to your provision of voluntary services at Uniting to Uniting Victoria and Tasmania. You consent to the use by Uniting of such creations in a manner reasonably contemplated by the voluntary services provided under this document. As a volunteer you also agree not to bring any claim for infringement of your moral rights in respect of that use.
Consent to use photographs and images
You [agree] that Uniting may take photographs and video footage of you carrying out your volunteer work and use it for the purposes of marketing and promotion of Uniting and its goods or services. This may include printed and digital marketing, including the use of your image on social media platforms. You may also be asked to complete a consent form.
If you do not provide consent please let us know.
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