Standard E1 Explained

Why does your organization need policies and procedures related to volunteer involvement? Policies and procedures formalize roles and responsibilities, ensuring that they are understood and carried out consistently throughout your organization.1 Having formal policies and procedures in place related to volunteer involvement demonstrates your organization’s commitment to supporting its volunteers.2 Policies and procedures are also an important component of risk management, clarifying expectations and guiding action and decision-making.3 By helping to ensure that your volunteer program is run effectively, policies and procedures can improve volunteer retention, productivity, and satisfaction.3

Policies and procedures related to volunteer involvement must comply with national and provincial / territorial legislation including legislation protecting human rights, privacy of information, and employment standards.1

Which volunteer involvement policies and procedures does your organization need? In developing volunteer involvement policies, it is helpful to carefully consider why your organization involves volunteers.2 According to your organization’s needs, you may develop policies and procedures related to:1 

  • Volunteer roles
  • Screening of volunteers
  • Grounds for dismissal of volunteers
  • Volunteer recruitment
  • Volunteer orientation and training
  • Reimbursement of volunteers’ expenses
  • Support and supervision of volunteers 
  • Insurance coverage for volunteers 
  • Equal opportunities 
  • Health and safety 
  • Conflict resolution 
  • Confidentiality


From "Accreditation Preparation Workbook Section E: Volunteer Involvement,"  Katharine Zywert, Social Prosperity Wood Buffalo at the University of Waterloo, 2013.

  1. The Canadian Code for Volunteer Involvement: Values, Guiding Principles, and Standards of Practice,” Volunteer Canada, 2012.
  2. “Writing a Volunteer Policy,” Volunteering Good Practice Guide, Volunteer Center, Brighton and Hove, 2009.
  3. “Policies and Procedures,” Linda L. Graff, December 2009.


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