Latest news

Work Health Safety: What It Means for Volunteers

A new Work Health and Safety (WHS) flow chart has been released by the Volunteering Strategy for SA, Project Team Three.

The chart aims to assist volunteer associations, volunteers and people conducting a business who engage volunteers with understanding how WHS laws may apply to their volunteering activities.

Developed in partnership with SafeworkSA, Local Community Insurance Services and the Local Government Association Workers Compensation Scheme, the flow chart contains relevant information and links to guidance material to help ensure the health and safety of volunteers.


2017 Premier's Certificate of Recognition

Nominations Now Open! 

Do your volunteers go above and beyond? Ever wondered how you can let them know they are appreciated? You can! Nominate them for an award - the Premier's Certificate of Recognition for Outstanding Volunteer Service.

Recognising the work of volunteers is crucial. It's all about letting them know you appreciate them and the work they do - so why not reward their efforts by presenting them with a certificate of appreciation.

Download the guidelines and view the online nomination form here

Nominations close 5pm Friday 7 April 2017


Working with Children Checks - Comparison Table

Volunteering Strategy for South Australia, Project Team Three has compiled a table giving a national snapshot of the level of checking used by states and territories to process Working with Children Checks (WWCCs).

The comparison table (425 KB) is the result of the increased national focus towards a consistent approach to WWCCs and shows the different, as well as the common sources of information each state and territory draws upon in determining whether to approve a WWCC.

While WWCCs are undertaken in some form in all states and territories in Australia, each of the eight states and territories has established its own independent process for issuing WWCCs. 

Importantly, however, each one has two common base elements: Australian Criminal Intelligence Commission (ACIC) (formerly CrimTrac) National Criminal History Check (NCHRC), and the expanded criminal history check through the National Exchange of Criminal History Exchange.

The comparison table was developed in consultation with all state and territory departments responsible for conducting WWCCs.


Does a volunteer require a criminal history report or DCSI screening under legislation?

In February 2014, the South Australian Government launched the cross sector Volunteering Strategy for South Australia 2014-2020, in partnership with Volunteering SA&NT, Business SA and the Local Government Association.

It provides a practical `blue-print' for action over the next six years and has been developed to improve the experience of volunteers, enhance the outcomes for volunteer involving organisations, and help meet South Australia's Strategic Plan target to maintain a volunteer participation rate of 70% or better.

One of the focus areas of the strategy is to implement leading practice and high quality standards and, more specifically, to investigate the transferability of criminal history record checks across organisations and jurisdictions, and to develop simple guidelines on how they should be used.

In December 2014, the focus area released a discussion paper on the transferability of police checks and a new fact sheet was developed in response to legislative changes to the Disability Services Act 1993. Key findings from the report indicate that in addition to meeting legislative requirements, many organisations choose to adopt a policy to screen their volunteers as part of their risk management strategy.

Given the differing policy approaches by organisations and need to meet legislative requirements, there is understandably some confusion in the community in relation to conducting criminal history report or screening check.

Development of flow chartcriminal history report/DCSI screening flowchart

To assist organisations to approach the task of determining which, if any, of their volunteers are required to undergo a criminal history report or screening check, the focus group has developed a flowchart "Does a volunteer require a criminal history report or DCSI screening under legislation?"

By making the assessment process easier through providing clear criteria on when checks are required, the flow chart aims to reduce the practice of over screening within organisations who may be implementing blanket 'screen one screen all' policies.

The document is not intended to prescribe policies or procedures; rather it is designed to ensure that organisations are aware of their legislative/regulatory obligations, and to provide a practical guide for implementing the criminal history report/screening process.

The focus group acknowledges the input into the development of the flow chart from:

  • Department for Education and Child Development
  • Department for Communities and Social Inclusion (Disability SA, Screening Unit)
  • SA Health
  • Department of Health (Commonwealth Government)

For your convenience, the flowchart has been broken down into the following four streams:


Volunteer certificate recognition program opens in February!

Are you an organisation or community group who would like to say thanks to your dedicated volunteers?

Recognising the work of volunteers is crucial. It's all about letting them know you appreciate them and the work they do - so why not reward their efforts by presenting them with a certificate of appreciation.

To assist you, the Office for Volunteers has developed two levels of certificates which can be awarded to acknowledge the participation and valuable contribution of volunteers.

more information


Youth Volunteering in Australia

A report to the National Youth Affairs Research Scheme in 2015 by the Associate Professor Luas Walsh and Dr Rosalyn Black (Australian Research Alliance for Children & Youth).

This report is a survey of the evidence on the extent and impact of young people's volunteering and social participation in Australia. It also provides an analysis of effective interventions and strategies for strengthening volunteering among young people aged 12 to 25.

Download the report here (3.64Mb)



STARService

The Department for Communities and Social Inclusion has developed an easy to use, interactive, free, online, self-paced development program which guides community organisations towards sustainability and success – it is called STARservice!

STARservice is for small community organisations who want to attract grant funding and improve their practices but are not required to undertake a quality accreditation program.

Organisations register online and complete 18 interactive questions, which once verified, gives them STARservice status.

It doesn't matter if an organisation can't answer 'Yes' to every question the first, second or even the third time. The STARservice process is all about continuous improvement and identifying areas that need work and then planning to take positive actions. By answering 'No' additional resources and links become available so organisations can address the criteria and gradually improve in order to complete the online process.

The benefits for organisations to complete the STARservice Development Program are:

  • developing better practices such as work, health and safety (WHS), risk and financial management
  • becoming well positioned to attract funding and support
  • developing policies and procedures
  • having qualified and motivated employees and volunteers
  • providing a safe, positive and welcoming environment
  • well on their way to achieving the Australian Service Excellence Standards

Register today by visiting https://www.starservice.sa.gov.au/

To find out more contact Jen Stupple, STARservice Project Officer on 8415 4157 or jennifer.stupple@sa.gov.au

To access the latest templates, courses, training, links, policies and resources click here


Screening and police checks

Heading

Choosing the right person for a volunteer role is an important responsibility, with many organisations conducting screening and police checks as part of their volunteer recruitment processes.

It can also be a requirement under legislation for volunteers working with vulnerable groups, such as:

  • children
  • the elderly
  • people with disability.

Depending on the roles they are performing, volunteers may require either a police check or screening check.

The Office for Volunteers has compiled a fact sheet about screening and police checks, including the requirements under legislation for South Australian volunteer organisations.

To access the screening and police checks fact sheet visit Screening-and-police-checks-for-volunteers


Volunteering Strategy for South Australia 2014-2020

A cross-sector Volunteering Strategy for South Australia has been developed to improve the experience of volunteers, enhance the outcomes for volunteer involving organisations, and help meet South Australia's Strategic Plan target to maintain a volunteer participation rate of 70% or better.

The Volunteering Strategy for South Australia was released on Friday 14 February 2014.

Developed through a unique partnership between four sectors,volunteer involving organisations, business, Local Government and State Government, the Strategy articulates a vision for volunteering that is distinctly South Australian and reflects our unique social and economic way of life.

The Strategy is a collaborative blue-print for action that sets in place the vision for volunteering in South Australia over the next six years.

Over 500 people provided input into the strategy over the last few months through round-table discussions, surveys and a LinkedIn discussion group. A big thanks to all of you who participated and we look forward to your continued involvement.

Find out more by visiting the Volunteer Strategy for South Australia website.


Insurance brokers for community groups

Local Community Insurance Services - LCIS is a specialist insurance provider established to manage the insurance needs of clubs and community groups within Australia.

GIO - GIO(SunCorp) is a leader in providing eligible Not For Profit Organisations with Public and Products Liability Insurance and is committed to the community.

NCOSS - NCOSS Community Cover is a bulk-buying insurance program brokered through Aon Risk Services with special features for not-for-profit and human services organisations.

Our Community - The Community Insurance & Risk Management Centre has been established to help Australian community groups get practical information, support and resources on risk management and to buy affordable insurance.