Volunteering is a serious commitment. Just because it is work you do for free does not mean you can come and go as you please or do the job haphazardly.
You must remember that you are saying “yes” to specific responsibilities and tasks assigned to you at the time that they are needed. People will depend on you to do your job well. On the other hand, you also have rights.
These ensure you can do your job well and protect you from liabilities. So, before you commit, be clear about your responsibilities as a volunteer.
As a volunteer, you have the responsibility to:
1. Come as scheduled and on time
You should be present on the date and time agreed upon. Make sure to inform your supervisor or coordinator if you cannot come to work. Give notice ahead of time so that arrangements can be made to cover your schedule.
2. Carry out your tasks efficiently and honestly
Performing your duties well and to the best of your abilities is expected when volunteering.
3. Commit time for the work
Some organizations require the completion of certain hours for a given period (for instance complete 50 hours in a year). If you agreed to this when you were accepted as a volunteer, then it is a commitment that you must fulfill.
4. Accept guidance and decisions of the volunteer coordinator
Most volunteers work under a volunteer supervisor and/or coordinator. They are your bosses. You can suggest ways by which things could be done, but the final decision lies with your bosses.
5. Participate in orientations, trainings and meetings
To learn more about your role and to acquire the proper knowledge and skills, you are expected to be present at trainings and meetings. If you have questions, suggestions or requests, these are the proper venues to raise them.
6. Keep internal information confidential
Being an integral part of the organization, you should not betray the trust given to you by your employer. Sensitive information about the organization and its clients must not be shared to the public. It can harm their operations. It can also get you into legal trouble.