Welcome to YoNISerD Organization.
Congratulations on deciding to volunteer in Kenya and we thank you for choosing YoNISerD.
You are about to embark on a unique experience that will allow you to build friendships with some amazing and talented young people, learn new skills, and, ultimately, grow as a person.
Our staff strives to maintain an open and productive environment through which we hope you will have a well-rounded experience and one of the most enjoyable and rewarding times of your life. Although we will have formal tasks and projects for you to accomplish, we welcome your ideas and look forward to seeing all that you can contribute to the organization.
In return, we expect openness and honesty from all volunteers. Be vocal if you have any issues at any time during your volunteer program, so that we may work to resolve them before they become a problem.
Please read this manual carefully as it contains the majority of the information that you will need throughout your volunteer program, as well as important policies and procedures that are particular to.
We wish you the best of luck.
Dr. Samson Barongo, PhD
Youth Network Integrated Services for Research and Development (YoNISerD) is a local youth-led non-government organization established in the year 2015 to promote and protect the rights of girls, women, and youth in the community. It was established by 7 like-minded young people with the aim of providing space for women and youth to discuss issues affecting them. It was officially registered on 15th February 2018 with the NGO coordination board. The organization achieves its objectives through initiating programs that enable women and youth to transform and take charge of their lives. The initiatives try to promote and sustain women and youth socioeconomic status as well as improving their leadership potential
YoNISerD Organization Vision: We strive to have an equitable and just society empowered to drive social-economic change.
YoNISerD Mission statement: To uphold the dignity and empowerment of all genders through advocacy, capacity building, and livelihood promotion.
YoNISerD Core Values
G- Gender equality: We strive to ensure women, men, girls, and boys enjoy the same resources and opportunities.
A-Accountability: We are responsible for our actions, decisions and resource utilization.
R- Respect for human rights: We believe that every human being should be treated with dignity.
I- Innovation and creativity: we inspire our beneficiaries to utilize local resources into useful products.
THE VOLUNTEER POLICY
This policy articulates the right and obligations of a volunteer when he/she is selected to work with YoNISerD. The policy outlines steps to enhance the working relationships between the volunteer and the organization and also aims to protect both the organization and the volunteer during this working period.
The policy applies to all national and international volunteers and interns of YoNISerD.
YoNISerD strives to recognize volunteers who are devoted to committing their time and skills to develop the organization and the surrounding communities. With the Volunteer Manual, the organization’s primary focus is to provide volunteers who are dedicated to maintaining their community with the best volunteering experience possible. The primary purpose of this volunteer Manual is to further explain the subsequent volunteer processes: definitions of volunteers, liability regulations, recognition and awards, policies and procedures, conduct guidelines and recruitment resources. The organization appreciates those who have helped and continue to make YoNISerD Organization the best it can be!
Overall Policy on Utilization of Volunteers
YoNISerD’s mission is to enhance community capacity by creating a sustainable community program. Without community support and active volunteerism, the organization cannot achieve its set objectives. As a volunteer-driven organization, YoNISerD accepts and encourages volunteer involvement at all levels of the organization.
A). Definition of a Volunteer
A “volunteer” is an individual who performs their specified job description willingly without any expressed or implied promise of remuneration. The same rules and expectations apply to volunteers while volunteering with the organization.
A volunteer is also often a person with a high sense of commitment to the common good, a great sense of compassion, and a willingness to give to a community. YoNISerD encourages their volunteers to fully commit to their calling and hence bring about lasting sustainable development to the community
Types of Volunteers
- Paid volunteers
- Non-paid volunteers
Why People Volunteer
People choose to volunteer for a variety of reasons.
Volunteering provides an opportunity to:
- Give something back to an organization that has impacted a person’s life, either directly or indirectly.
- Make a difference in the lives of others.
- Provide assistance to those who are less fortunate or who lack a strong voice.
- Feel valued and be part of a team.
- Spend quality time away from work or a busy lifestyle.
- Gain confidence and improve self-‐esteem.
- Meet new people and make new friends.
- Be exposed to new environments, skills, approaches, and strategies.
- Get to know the local community.
- Develop skills and build on existing experience and knowledge.
- To be protected against discrimination.
- To be recognized as an individual with individual skills and talents.
- To be given an orientation.
- To be challenged and provided with opportunities for growth.
- To be given regular appraisal and feedback on work performance.
- To be involved in the organization’s daily activities
- To be clear and honest about how much commitment and time the volunteer is able to give to the organization.
- To be reliable and arrive on time to work.
- To perform assigned duties and responsibilities.
- To let the organization know if a volunteer cannot carry out duties.
- To communicate to his/her immediate supervisor about any problems they encounter.
- To abide by the policies, rules, and regulations of the organization.
- To be self- ‐motivated and work under minimum supervision.
- To be transparent and accountable to the organization
- To participate in all organization activities
Volunteers ‘duties are assigned based on the qualifications, experiences, and interests upon an assessment of the application. The organization reserves the right to assign a volunteer to a particular project based on the needs of the organization and the qualifications of the volunteer. Volunteers may be required to assume additional responsibilities that will be assigned and detailed by the volunteer’ s immediate supervisor(s).
Volunteer Policies& Engagement Guidelines
I. Volunteer Policy
Unless specifically stated, these policies apply to all volunteers within the [YoNISerD]. This includes any volunteers who partake in projects undertaken by, or on behalf of, the program.
ii. Purpose of Volunteer Policies
The purpose of these policies and engagement guidelines is to provide overall guidance and direction to both [YoNISerD ] staff and volunteers engaged in volunteer involvement and management efforts. These policies are intended for internal management guidance only and do not constitute, either implicitly or explicitly, a personal agreement. The Volunteer Policies are intended to provide direction for both volunteers and the Volunteer Administrator on how to work effectively with one another. The program reserves the right at any time to the change of policy.
iii. Becoming a Volunteer with YoNISerD
Volunteer application forms are available online under www.youthintegration.org or can be requested via email: firstname.lastname@example.orgemail@example.com. Once accepted as a volunteer the individual will receive general volunteer orientation and instruction specific to their choice or area of interest. Volunteers are the most important persons to the organization and as such, are extended the right to meaningful duties, fair treatment, and full participation. In exchange, YoNISerD expects volunteers to perform their assigned duties to the best of their ability and remain loyal to the mission, goals, and procedures of the organization.
iv. Role of Volunteer Management within YoNISerD The productive utilization of volunteers requires a planned and organized effort, which is done with proper planning in consultation with the project team. The project team is overseen by the Executive Director to ensure they are working efficiently and properly. The Executive Director is responsible for maintaining a cohesive, functional environment for both assisting staff and volunteers. The Executive Director is also responsible for: promoting YoNISerD volunteer program, recruiting volunteers, evaluating and recognizing the contribution of volunteers to the program.
v. Access to Program Property and Materials
As deemed appropriate, volunteers will have limited access to program property, materials as needed. Volunteers may utilize YoNISerD property and materials only when directly required for program purposes.
vi. Dress Code
As representatives of the program, staff, and volunteers are responsible for presenting a good, quality image to the community. Volunteers are expected to dress appropriately for the conditions and performance of their duties as per the prevailing norms and culture of operational locale.
vii. Time Sheets
Individual volunteers are responsible for the accurate completion and timely submission of timesheets to the organization administrative assistant.
viii. Performance Reviews
Volunteers will receive quarterly performance reviews to assess their work or timelines reasonable to their respective working experiences. The performance review, hosted by the Executive Director, is utilized to review the following: performance of the volunteer; to convey appreciation to the volunteer; to ascertain the continued interest of the volunteer in serving in that particular position; and to seek suggestions from the volunteer or means of enhancing the volunteer’s relationship with the [YoNISerD].
The performance review will include filling a volunteer performance assessment form, holding a meeting together with the team members to review progress and filling volunteer feedback forms. The review is an opportunity for both the volunteer and the organization to assess and improve their relationship with one another. In addition, volunteers may be asked to change assignment or may be relieved of duties if deemed necessary by the Executive Director.
The Volunteer must notify the Executive Director if he/she will be absent from duty. Volunteers are encouraged to communicate in advance in case of absence. The Executive Director and the project team will organize on how to stand in for the volunteer until he /she comes back.
x. Leave of Absence
The Executive Director has the authority to grant leaves of absence to volunteers at their discretion. This leave of absence will not alter or extend the previously agreed upon ending date of the volunteer’s term of service.
Volunteers may resign from their volunteer service with YoNISerD at any time. If intending to resign, volunteers are encouraged to provide two weeks advance notice of their departure and a reason for their decision as appropriate so that another volunteer can be recruited into the departing volunteer’s duties.
i. Keeping the image of the organization.
While volunteering with YoNISerD, volunteers must take into consideration the magnitude of their actions and comments while working alongside /outside personnel. Volunteers should take care not to make any remarks that may notably affect the organization’s pre-established relationship. Volunteers may speak with the press with authorization by the [YoNISerD] Executive Director. Volunteers are required to act as representatives of the program as indicated within the extent of their job descriptions.
Volunteers are encouraged to have necessary insurance covers with reputable insurance companies for purposes of liability. YoNISerD will invite the insurance agent to at least one meeting per year to instruct the board of the policies associated with liability insurance.
It is advisable for the volunteers engaged in program work to have Liability and accident insurance covers the organization does not have insurance covers for its staff and volunteers. The volunteers are advised to have their own arrangement for the insurance covers during their volunteer period.
It is the policy and commitment of the YoNISerD not to discriminate based on race, color, sex and/or gender, sexual orientation, national origin, age, disability, religion, and/or familial status in the admission of its volunteers or its programs and services. All volunteers and employees are accountable to this notion and failure to comply with this policy may result in termination from the program.
v. Sexual Harassment Policy
YoNISerD is committed to providing volunteers with a safe, productive, and enjoyable environment and experience while volunteering with the organization. YoNISerD will not tolerate any form of sexual harassment among its employees and volunteers and encourages volunteers to bring any incident of sexual harassment to the immediate attention of the Executive Director or proper authority.
Volunteers are responsible for maintaining the confidentiality of all proprietary and/or privileged information to which they are exposed while serving as a volunteer, whether this information involves a staff member, volunteer or another person, or overall program implementation. Designated and authorized volunteers will have exposure to confidential information that is defined as inside, personal or sensitive information and may include contact information, credentials, or personal experience stories. All employees and volunteers will be taken through the YoNISerD confidentiality policy which forms part of the assignment contract.
Vii. Conflict of Interest
No person who has a conflict of interest with any activity or program, whether personal or financial, shall serve as a volunteer with the program. If there is a concern that there may be a Conflict of Interest, the volunteer is asked to direct the concern to the Executive Director.
Viii. Data Base of Records
YoNISerD Volunteer Administrator will maintain a system of records on each volunteer within the program, including dates of service, positions held, duties performed, evaluation of work, and awards received if any. The database will be placed in the file and on the wall of the organization.
ix. Use and Copyright of the Website
Volunteers will not be allowed to use YoNISerD’s website and other social media pages for personal business promotion not related to the organization work. The organization reserves all rights and privileges to its logo, graphics, endorsement, and property, which cannot be used without consent by YoNISerD Authorities.
x. Email Policy
The firstname.lastname@example.org will be created and maintained for volunteers/employees who:
- Have an active staff or volunteer leadership role (email accounts not used for 60 days will be deactivated and possibly deleted)
- Need to send email as a representative of YoNISerD
- Have signed YoNISerD ’s Code of Conduct statement
- Have been approved by the Executive Director, as having a role that requires an individual email account
Expectations associated with maintaining an [YoNISerD] email account include:
- Emails received will be responded to in a timely manner, usually within 48 hours. An out-of-office message should be set for emails that will be unmonitored for greater lengths of time. Email should not be used for personal matters, but rather for YoNISerD related work only
- Passwords should not be shared with others; only the Executive Director.
- Volunteer emails will be deactivated at after completion of the volunteering period
xi. Online and Written Communication
All volunteers agree to communicate, verbally and written, with sensitivity, patience, and respect. While volunteering with YoNISerD volunteers will become involved with a diverse population and must remain conscious of the possibility for misinterpretation of tone and inference, especially in email. Volunteers agree to use clear and kind language when formulating messages.
xii. Dispute Regulation
In case of any conflict among volunteers, the parties involved are expected to first communicate directly with one another in a respectful attempt to reach a mutual understanding. If a reasonable resolution cannot be reached, then a volunteer can first request mediation from the Executive Director. However, volunteers are encouraged to work in a harmonious relationship that will avoid conflicts at all times.
xiii. Volunteer Sensitivity
Volunteers must give every client equal opportunities to access resources and advice pertaining to the program’s mission. Volunteers must also show equal respect to clients regardless of differences. If a volunteer feels uncomfortable with a certain situation or client, they must immediately notify the Executive Director.
IV. Volunteer Recruitment and Selection
The Executive Director will recruit volunteers on a proactive basis, with the intent of broadening and expanding community involvement into the organization. The sole qualification for volunteer recruitment shall be suitability to perform a task on behalf of the program with disregard, but not limited to: race, color, sex and/or gender, sexual orientation, national origin, age, disability, religion, and/or familial status. It is the intent of YoNISerD to place the volunteer in areas that align with their interest wherever possible. The written volunteer position description for volunteers will be developed and forwarded to that volunteer.
ii. Position Description
The Volunteer will have a clear, complete, and current description of the duties and responsibilities of the position, which they are expected to fill. The Executive Director will review volunteer position descriptions to ascertain any changes, which may have occurred during the annual performance reviews. All position descriptions must include the purpose and duties of the position and a timeframe for the performance of the job.
iii. Volunteer Placement
YoNISerD will match volunteers to opportunities that recognized their talents, interests, and availability for serving as per the details in the application form. If at any time a volunteer wishes to reassign their position or take on an additional project or role, they should be encouraged to discuss their interest with the Executive Director.
vi. Length of Service
The volunteering period will be subject to the mutual agreement between YoNISerD, and the volunteer agencies/organizations
Volunteer Orientation and Development
All volunteers will receive a general orientation on the nature and purpose of the program, overall operation of the organization and a specific orientation on the purposes and requirements of the position, which they are accepting in that effort. International volunteers will be received at the airport or point of entry and be given 2 days orientation at the capital city and thereafter proceed to the field where they will be received and orientated further by their host organization. At this point, they will be ready for any formal engagement
ii. Volunteer Training
Volunteers will receive specific on-the-job training to provide them with the information and skills necessary to perform their volunteer assignment. The timing and methods for delivery of such training will be deemed appropriate based on the complexity and demands of the position and capabilities of the volunteer. The volunteers will also take part in the organizations, planned staff capacity building training to improve their skills and knowledge on the aspects of the project.
To highlight and reward the contribution of volunteers to the organization, an annual volunteer recognition event will take place annually. In order to discuss how the volunteers would like to be recognized, they will be asked to become involved and consulted to develop an appropriate format for the event. The recognition shall be in both formal and informal ways.
YoNISerD’s Volunteer Management
I. Requirements of a Volunteer Administrator
Each accepted YoNISerD volunteer will have a clearly identified supervisor, who is responsible for direct management of that volunteer. The Supervisor is responsible for day-to-day management and guidance of the work of those volunteers and will be available to the volunteer for consultation and assistance.
ii. Staff Evaluation and Participation
YoNISerD Project team and the Executive Director should be involved and/or fully appraised of all evaluation and work assignments of volunteers with whom they are connected.
iii. Lines of Communication
Volunteers are entitled to all necessary information pertinent to the performance of their work assignments. Accordingly, YoNISerD will provide volunteers access to all appropriate memos, materials, and meetings relevant to their work assignments. To facilitate the receipt of this information on a timely basis, volunteers are to be included on all weekly plans. Primary responsibility for ensuring that the volunteer receives such information will rest with the Executive Director.
iv. Corrective Action
Following an evaluation, or at any time deemed necessary by the Executive Director, corrective action may take place in appropriate situations. Examples of corrective action include the requirement of additional training, reassignment of a volunteer to a new position, suspension of the volunteer, or dismissal from volunteer service.
V. Dismissal of a Volunteer
Volunteers who do not adhere to the rules and procedures of the organization or who fail to satisfactorily perform their volunteer assignment are subject to dismissal. Until the volunteer has had an opportunity to discuss the reasons for possible dismissal with the organization Executive Director, no volunteer termination will occur.
vii. Reasons for Volunteer Dismissal
Possible grounds for dismissal may include, but are not limited to the following: gross misconduct or insubordination; being under the problematic use of alcohol or drugs; theft of property or misuse of YoNISerD equipment or materials or funds; abuse or mistreatment of community members; volunteers or co-workers; failure to abide by [YoNISerD] policies and procedures speaking to the press without prior express permission from the [YoNISerD]Executive Director; misrepresentation of [YoNISerD]to its partners; failure to meet physical or mental standards of performance; failure to satisfactorily perform assigned duties.
viii. Concerns and Grievances
Decisions involving corrective action of a volunteer will be reviewed for appropriateness. If corrective action is taken, the affected volunteer shall be informed of the procedures for expressing his or her concerns or grievance.
ix. Exit Interviews
Exit interviews, where possible, will be conducted with volunteers who are leaving their positions. The interview will ascertain why the volunteer is leaving the position, suggestions the volunteer may have for improving the position, and the possibility of involving the volunteer in some other YoNISerD program.