The Volunteer Friendly Award

We involve volunteers because they are motivated, have fun helping and tell us it lets them give something back to the community. Volunteers are crucial to Brae.

Mary Sneddon, Centre Manager,
Brae RDA Partnership (Riding for the Disabled).

News

Volunteer Friendly in the Borders - ChildLine

12 March 2013

The ChildLine Schools Service has become the second service in the Borders to receive a Volunteer Friendly Award, in recognition of its success in training, motivating and supporting its invaluable team of volunteers.

Pupils from P6 and P7 watched excitedly as some of the ChildLine Schools Service volunteers who have been helping them understand issues such as abuse and bullying received the Award at St Peter’s Primary School in Galashiels this week. The ChildLine Schools Service programme consists of assembly-style presentations by volunteers to the whole-year group, followed by workshops in individual classes.

Tony Brown, Area Co-ordinator for ChildLine Schools Service, said, “We rely on volunteers to deliver the service in school and help P6 and P7 children learn how to protect themselves from abuse and bullying. This Volunteer Friendly Award means a huge amount to us as it shows that we are giving our volunteers the recognition and treatment they deserve.”

ChildLine won the accolade after convincing assessors from Volunteer Centre Borders (VCB) that it follows best practice towards its volunteers, and producing a folder of material evidence to back this up. Award winners must demonstrate that they manage their volunteers properly, treat them fairly, train and support them, offer them the opportunity for personal development and celebrate their contributions to the organisation.  The first organisation to win a Volunteer Friendly Award in the Borders was Citizens Advice Bureau Peebles in December 2012.

With the voluntary sector growing daily, management of volunteers is a subject increasingly on the agenda, and there is a growing need for standards in volunteering to be of the highest level.

Susan Swan, VCB’s Executive Officer, said, “There are lots of benefits to having a Volunteer Friendly Award.  Managers will have better motivated volunteers, who will, in turn, have confidence that they are being looked after well. Volunteers can be sure that they are joining a group that will value and protect their interests. And having a Volunteer Friendly Award shows funding bodies that good practices are in place.

“ChildLine Schools Service submitted an excellent portfolio which covered all aspects of good volunteer management. VCB assessors felt that the evidence showed that volunteers could feel confident about volunteering there and would be well supported, protected and valued.”

 


ChildLine School Services Volunteer Kirsty Essery (middle) and Area Co-ordinator Tony Brown receive the Volunteer Friendly Award from Susan Swan, Volunteer Centre Borders’ Executive Officer.


Volunteer Centre Dundee is Volunteer Friendly

06 November 2012

Volunteer Centre Dundee's Investing in Volunteers accreditation expired this year so we thought that it was about time for us to put together the evidence that we are Volunteer Friendly.  It was a good time to review our practices as we've been recruiting new volunteers to help us with the administration of the Saltire Award and with delivery of services in the Voluntary Gateway, which we operate in partnership with Dundee Voluntary Action and Dundee Social Enterprise Network.

Two members of Dundee's peer assessor group got together at the end of October with some visitors from Voluntary Sector Gateway West Lothian to look at our portfolio of evidence.  We're very pleased to say that we've been approved as Volunteer Friendly!


Volunteer Friendly reaches three more areas

30 May 2012

With Borders, East Ayrshire and West Lothian now licensed to deliver the Volunteer Friendly Award and interface staff gearing up to work with groups in these areas, it's now possible for organisations and groups in 23 Scottish Local Authority areas to achieve the Volunteer Friendly Award.  To date, there are 104 Volunteer Friendly groups and organisations in Scotland.


Caithness groups are Volunteer Friendly!

19 December 2011

At a recent award ceremony three Caithness voluntary organisations were presented with their Volunteer Friendly Awards.

Jennifer Macdonald, manager of the British Red Cross Shop in Thurso, Michele Whibley, manager of Homeaid Caithness & Sutherland, and Margaret Allan, manager of the Laurandy Centre Wick, were presented with the awards by Rob Gibson MSP.  Mr Gibson said “Caithness groups and individuals always show their true community spirit by volunteering.  The team at the Laurandy Centre, British Red Cross Shop and Homeaid have made many lives better as a result, congratulations to them all”  

The Volunteer Friendly Awards in Caithness are co-ordinated by Catherine Patterson based in Caithness Voluntary Group.  She supports groups while they are working on the awards and is the local contact. 

Jennifer Macdonald of the British Red cross Shop Thurso [centre left], Michele Whibley of Homeaid Caithness & Sutherland [centre] and Margaret Allan of the Laurandy Centre are seen here with Catherine Patterson [far left] and Rob Gibson MSP [far right] together with some of their volunteers at a recent ceremony in the Laurandy Centre, Wick.

Award ceremony for three Caithness organisations


European Year of Volunteering - Volunteer Friendly goes on tour!

25 October 2011

Building on the success of Volunteer Friendly in Scotland, where the Award is now offered in 20 local authority areas, staff from the Volunteer Centre Dundee will be joining the European Year of Volunteering 2011 Tour when it comes to London at the end of October to introduce the Volunteer Friendly Award to a wider audience.  The tour, which will visit 27 capitals during the European Year of Volunteering, aims to provide volunteers with an opportunity to exhibit their work, meet one another, engage with policy-makers and the general public, convey their energy and enthusiasm, and discuss key issues for the future of their work. 

For more information about the tour, go to http://europa.eu/volunteering/en/tour.


Volunteer Friendly reaches 20 areas in Scotland

25 October 2011

Volunteer Friendly is now being offered in 20 areas across Scotland, from Shetland to South Ayrshire.  More than 100 groups have signed up to work their way through the Award and to get public recognition of how well they treat their volunteers.  Over 60 groups can now proudly display the Volunteer Friendly logo.


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