The Volunteer Experience – What You Can Expect
We want your volunteer experience with us to be positive. You will receive orientation, training, and ongoing support in order to help you to make the most of your time with us.
SHARE is committed to including all people as volunteers. We are committed to respectful communication, so you can expect to be treated with equality and respect at all times and we expect volunteers to treat clients, staff and other volunteers in the same respectful manner.
There are six parts to the volunteering process:
1) The Food Bank Tour:
All volunteers will have a general Food Bank tour before proceeding with an interview.
2) The Interview: A Food Bank Supervisor will conduct the interview. Both of our expectations will be discussed and we can decide whether it is a match for both you and SHARE Food Bank.
- What You Tell Us Is Confidential: The information you tell us is only shared with the Food Bank Supervisor and other SHARE Program Staff. It is important we have accurate information about you (like your address and phone number) for safety reasons and for volunteer recognition. We do not share your information with anyone else without your permission except in the following circumstances:
- If we get information that leads us to suspect that a child (18 and under) is at risk for, or has been physically, sexually or emotionally abused or neglected, we are legally required to make a report to the Ministry of Children and Family Development.
- If you tell us that you are about to do something that could result in harm to yourself or others, we may contact the appropriate people in all circumstances.
- If we receive an order by a court of law for the production of records, we are required to release information.
- If you have any questions about how we keep your personal information private and confidential, or if you would like to access the personal information we have collected, you can contact our Privacy Officer at (604) 540-9161.
3) Placement: The Food Bank Supervisor will assign you to a volunteer role within the Food Bank and determine a work schedule suitable to you and the Food Bank needs.
- How Will I Be Placed? Your placement will depend on what Food Bank tasks need to be completed and according to your interests, skill levels, and your suitability for the position. There may be situations when you want to volunteer in a particular area, but there are no positions open.
4) Orientation, Training and Support: During the first weeks orientation and training activities and volunteer support will happen. During this time you and the Food Bank Staff will look at whether the work environment and the position is a good fit. Senior volunteers may also be involved in the training. Please ask if you do not understand directions or procedures. Periodically, health, safety and other informative workshops will be available to volunteers.
Program staff will provide new volunteers with safety information such as the location of fire extinguishers and emergency exits. Other health and safety procedures (such as proper lifting, sorting methods) will be covered by program staff.
The Food Bank provides a learning, and teaching, environment. To obtain the maximum benefit from your time with us, volunteers are encouraged to discuss concerns, share ideas and provide feedback to the program staff and Food Bank Supervisor.
5) Feedback: Informal feedback is provided by the staff to volunteers about their performance and progress in a particular volunteer job. It is a way for staff to share information about a volunteer’s skills, accomplishments and learning. Suggestions and recommendations may cover skills needed in order for a volunteer to pursue a particular employment goal.
6) Recognition/Appreciation: Throughout the year there are events such as an April Volunteer Recognition Event where certificates are provided allowing us to express our thanks and appreciation to all the volunteers who contribute their time, labour and commitment to SHARE.
At times, staff and volunteers reward and recognize extraordinary volunteer service, contributions that go above and beyond the expectation of Food Bank volunteer duties. As well, letters of reference documenting volunteer responsibilities, hours contributed and performance are available upon request to the Food Bank Supervisor.