Volunteer guidelines

Page - April 20, 2010
Below are our guidelines for volunteers.

“Volunteers don’t get paid not because they’re worthless, but because they are priceless.” ~Sherry Anderson

Contents

Basic policy

GPSEA volunteers

 Qualifications for GPSEA volunteers 

Rights and responsibilities of GPSEA volunteers

Volunteer management

Volunteers' Code of Conduct

Annex: Volunteer Application Form

1. Basic policy

GPSEA believes that public support is key to the success of our mission to save the environment. GPSEA believes that it is important to get more people directly involved in our work. Furthermore, GPSEA recognizes that the time and skills that volunteers provide are as equally important to the regular financial contributions of our supporters.

GPSEA commits to this policy as the framework for working with our volunteers. GPSEA is committed to these fundamental principles of volunteering:

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  • freedom of choice to work
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  • for non-profit objectives
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  • that will benefit the community,
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  • and, is unpaid work

These are guidelines that reflect GPSEA's philosophy on volunteer involvement; institutionalize the rights and responsibilities of volunteers to GPSEA, and set the baseline for day to day decision - making and operations for the management and coordination of volunteers.

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2. GPSEA volunteers

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  • GPSEA volunteers are individuals who have freely and willingly committed themselves to uphold and promote the Greenpeace core values and work to support its campaign work in SEA (Bangkok, Manila, Jakarta) without expecting financial remuneration for their services.

2.1. Types of GPSEA volunteers

GPSEA volunteers include activists, interns, cyberactivists, local group members.

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  • Activists are those who take direct action in support of our campaigns. They shall support and uphold GP's commitment to nonviolent direct action and commit to a training program to ensure that the GP standards for such activities are met. They can be involved in activities using boats, climbing actions, research and logistics work.
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  • Interns are those who render unpaid office-based work to complement our campaign staff. They are expected to deliver the same quantity and quality of work as paid staff in exchange for the work experience with Greenpeace. They can be engaged in office-based work as research assistants on specific campaign issues, media work and public outreach.
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  • Cyberactivists are those who participate in web-based campaign activities. They shall serve as the Greenpeace virtual community and shall be the conduit of our activities as we reach out to the cyber-public.
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  • Local Group members are those who are part of a duly recognized Greenpeace local group. Greenpeace Local Groups shall be organized to serve as a conduit for our campaigns and to provide a community for our volunteers who cannot be part of office-based activities because of practical limitations of space and time.

N.B. The foregoing categorization does not, in any way, preclude the involvement of a volunteer in two or more functions.

 

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3. Qualifications for GPSEA volunteers

Prospective GPSEA volunteers:

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  • must support and commit to uphold the Greenpeace core values of nonviolence and independence and believe in its  mission, and
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  • must be able to commit to at least one of the work areas for volunteers and agree to be recognized as such.
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4. Rights and responsibilities of GPSEA volunteers

  4.1. Both volunteers and GPSEA have responsibilities towards each other to provide the best possible experience for volunteer work.

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  • Each GPSEA volunteer is expected to do a specific task or project. In turn, a volunteer expects that they will gain valuable and rewarding experiences whilst undergoing this work. Therefore, it is necessary to understand the basic rights and responsibilities that volunteers and staff have toward each other, to manage these dual expectations. These include:

4.2. GPSEA Volunteers have the right;

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  • to information and details about the work they are undertaking, and the significance of that work,
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  • to training which enables the volunteer to effectively carry out the task asked of them,
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  • to say no if the volunteer is asked to undertake a task they don't want to do,
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  • to claim out-of-pocket expenses in carrying out voluntary work,
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  • to recognition and thanks, whether this be a verbal expression of appreciation, or a formal letter of reference,
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  • to be entitled to respect and support from coworkers, both paid and voluntary,
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  • be treated fairly,
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  • to participate in the decision forming process relevant to their area of work.

4.3. GPSEA can expect of its volunteers:

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  • a definite commitment in terms of time and attendance,
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  • that all duties agreed to by volunteers will be undertaken in a responsible, punctual, dependable, conscientious and courteous manner,
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  • to act as part of a team, this includes the volunteer exhibiting diplomacy, honesty and cooperation,
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  • clear and open communication,
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  • a professional and committed attitude to the job and to Greenpeace,
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  • the same loyalty, discretion and ethics expected of paid employees.
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5. volunteer management

5.1. Volunteer application

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  • Prospective volunteers shall completely fill in a volunteer application form with their photo and a copy of ID submitted
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  • Volunteers' information shall be kept in a database and will be used by GPSEA's employees for organization purposes only.

5.2. Volunteers ' supervision and coordination

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  • The Public Outreach Coordinator shall be the first point of contact for volunteers. Pertinent personal information shall be gathered for databasing at this point and subsequently endorsed to the respective units for supervision.
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  • Volunteers shall be supervised accordingly, and guidelines developed for each type of volunteer by the respective supervising unit. To wit, the Actions Team shall develop guidelines for activists, while the Public Outreach Team shall develop guidelines for Local Groups and Cyberactivists. The Fundraising Department shall develop guidelines for Fundraising volunteers and the Office Manager shall develop guidelines for Interns.
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  • The SMT members based in the respective GPSEA offices shall be responsible for the strategic direction of volunteer work and management.
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  • Work with volunteers shall be coordinated by the respective Actions Campaigners in each location while day to day supervision of volunteers rests upon the respective departments who requested or recruited volunteers.
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  • All volunteers engaged to work shall be covered by a job description and terms of reference, for which their supervisors are primarily responsible

5.3. Volunteer expenses

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  • Volunteers are eligible for reimbursement of budgeted expenses incurred while fulfilling assigned duties. The following budget items may be reimbursable, based on the approval by their direct supervisor: meals & refreshments, accommodations, transportation costs (e.g. traveling cost or mileage, parking expenses) and communications (mobile phone charge).

5.4. Orientation

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  • A calendar for regular volunteer orientation meetings shall be organized in each GPSEA location. Prospective volunteers shall be invited to the orientation - meeting on Greenpeace history, its core values, its campaigns and on volunteering for the environment.

5.5. Trainings

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  • Volunteer supervisors shall be responsible for ensuring that volunteers are able to participate in trainings conducted by GPSEA essential to the performance of their duties.

5.6. Meetings and Updates

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  • Volunteer supervisors shall organize meetings to update volunteers whenever necessary. Regular updates on campaign news and activities shall be communicated to volunteers via e-mail.
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6. Volunteers' Code of Conduct

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  • Volunteers are expected to observe this code of conduct.

6.1. Access to information and confidentiality

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  • GPSEA volunteers shall maintain the confidentiality of privileged information they are exposed to while serving as a volunteer, especially if it is necessary for the completion of their assignment.
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  • GPSEA volunteers should agree not to divulge any information learned in the course of volunteering and which may compromise the success of Greenpeace's nonviolent campaigns and may be required to sign a confidentiality agreement.

6.2. Personal liability

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  • GPSEA volunteers shall be responsible for the consequences of their own actions. Volunteers shall not claim any losses/damages of any personal properties, reputations or incomes and/or physical injuries caused by their act(s) that is/are not authorized by the volunteer supervisor.

6.3. Material Resources Use

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  • GPSEA volunteers shall use office resources appropriately and maintain them carefully as if they are of their own. resources (i.e. stationery, car, camera, computer, action equipment, computers, etc.) are to used solely for official purposes.  

6.4. Comportment

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  • GPSEA volunteers shall comport themselves in a manner that shall be friendly, courteous and respectful of their colleagues.
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7. Annex: Volunteer Application Form

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