We have created this handy guide to cover the main areas of running your student-led volunteering group. Please share this guide with the whole committee and decide which roles will cover each area, as this will help to cover any essential tasks throughout the year.

There’s a range of support available to, please feel free to speak to us at any point as we are able to help you:

·  Jobs, Skills and Volunteering (we’ll be your main contact)

·  Student Groups Activities Counter

·  Activities and Development Officer

·  Guild Reception


Committee responsibilities / Page / Who will be responsible?
Support for you while you are on committee / 1
Your responsibilities as a volunteer / 2
Promoting your group / 3
Selecting the right volunteers / 4
Planning and managing your activity / 6
Planning your year / 6
Financial procedures / 8
Completing relevant paperwork / 9
Session Planning / 13
Next Steps / 15

1.0 Support for you while you are on Committee

1.1 Jobs, Skills and Volunteering Department:

We support all of the Community Volunteering and the Campaigning & Fundraising Groups (Student Groups supports the rest of our student-led groups)

We help with a range of queries including:

·  Volunteering information and guidance

·  Information about external charities

·  Support with safeguarding training

·  DBS Certificates (if applicable to your group)

·  General queries and support

Office Open: 10:00am – 4:00 pm Monday – Friday


Phone: 0121 251 2411

Twitter: @guild_volunteer

Vacation Opening Hours: 12:00pm – 3:00pm

1.2 Student Groups Activities Counter:

We help with a range of queries including:

·  Updating your constitution

·  Paying in and collecting money

·  Paying for activities

·  Handing in speaker request forms

·  Booking rooms at the university (Learning Centre, Nuffield, Arts Building and the chaplaincy)

·  Getting account statements

·  Borrowing equipment (charity collection buckets, hi-vis vests, laptop, projector)

Counter Open Term-time: 11:00am - 5:30pm Monday – Thursday & 11:00 am - 4.30pm on Fridays


Phone: 0121 251 2424

Twitter: @guild_groups

Vacation Opening Hours: 12:00pm – 3:00pm

1.3 Activities and Development Officer:

Natalie Cox (2016-17) is here to support and oversee the wide range of student groups and societies we have, and to make sure that you get involved & get the most out of your time in Birmingham.

In person: Officer Corridor in the Guild – please contact first to check that she’s in.


Twitter: @guild_activity

1.4 Guild Reception:

·  Booking rooms in the Guild (queries University rooms are supported by Student Groups)

·  Access to your locker key (if applicable)

Open: Monday, Wednesday and Friday: 8:30am – 9:00pm, Tuesday: 8:30am – 10:00pm, Thursday: 8:30am – 10:00pm, Saturday and Sunday: 10:00am – 8:00pm Vacation: 08:30am – 5:00pm (Monday – Friday)

2.0 Your Responsibilities as a Committee Member

You have been selected for a particular role on the committee. It is important to read your specific role description thoroughlyand ask questions to your predecessor if you are unsure of what to do.

By becoming a committee member of a community volunteering group you are agreeing to:

·  Act in the best interest of your volunteers and service users

·  Ensure the Guild always has the correct contact details for your committee, and stay in regular contact with volunteering, including checking the groups guild e-mail account and pigeonhole

·  Complete relevant forms and risk assessments to the Guild

·  Attend Miniforums and Megaforums and meetings with volunteering when requested

·  Ensuring volunteers have had the required checks and training before they start

·  Follow the Guild’s Safeguarding procedures

·  Abide by Service Level Agreement with the external organisation/partner organisation that the volunteering takes place with (if applicable)

·  Inform the Guild who is volunteering on each activity using the evaluation forms.

·  Not to speak to any media under the Guild’s name or sign any contracts relating to your group

·  To treat all members equally and to make sure you always follow the Guild’s guidance on confidentially and data protection.

We also would like you to:

·  Show enthusiasm and commitment to your role

·  Manage your time efficiently

·  Provide support to other committee members and respect one another

·  Encourage students to take part in volunteering

·  Set an example to others

·  Do what is asked of you in a timely and efficient manner

·  Represent the University and Guild professionally

2.1 Managing your Guild e-mail account

All groups have a Guild e-mail account,;we send you useful information and updates as well as forwarding prospective volunteers to it. It is essential that it is checked regularly - at least once a week.

We recommend new committees change the password soon after taking office.

You can access e-mail via Guild website (link at the bottom of the home page).

2.2 Computer and Photocopying Access

There are computers for your exclusive use as a committee member of a group; these can be accessed whenever Reception is open; half of these have Photoshop and InDesign installed.

The printer/copier is accessed using your group username and password, it can do either A4 or A3 printing, in either black & white or colour, charges are deducted from your group account automatically each month.

3.0 Promoting Your Group and Your Activity

You can promote your group in a variety of ways including:

·  Your group's page on the Guild of Students website

·  Via Facebook or Twitter

·  Displaying posters electronically on the Guild's TV screens (images must be JPEG in landscape format, 856 x 480 pixels)

·  Displaying paper posters; to get them put up in the Guild, hand up to 6 at the Student Groups Counter, for the rest of campus, put them on general use noticeboards - you must not flypost on or in buildings)

·  Celebrating success storiesthrough the Guild's student media groups, such as Rebrick, BURN FM and GuildTV

·  External media - if you want to do this you must talk tothe Guild's Communications & MarketingDepartment before contacting anyone.

·  Student Groups & Volunteering email newsletter

Remember the diverse student population you are catering to when promoting your groups - think about international student, mature students, parents/carers and disabled students - your activities should be open to everyone and you must be prepared to make reasonable adjustments to your plans if needed. Please ask for advice or help from staff or officers if you're not sure how to meet your volunteers’ needs.

For more information, see the 'Publicity' group guide

4.0 Selecting the Right Volunteers

It is important to make sure that the students you are recruiting are dedicated, safe and reliable.

As the committee you will need to decide on an application method for students, which can be used throughout the year, for example:

·  Short application Form

·  Expression of Interest Letter (email with a few paragraphs saying why the student wishes to volunteer with your group)

Please see the table below to help with your planning:

Any student that wants to volunteer with a Community Volunteering group canonly volunteer with your group once they have completed the following:

Summer / Update webpage for group
·  What does the group do (e.g. more about the project, success story from last year etc)
·  How volunteers are recruited
·  How often volunteers are recruited (e.g. September and December)
·  If volunteers will require a DBS check to take part in the activities e.g. volunteering with children, or regulated activity relating to adults (check with )
Week 1-3 / Actively promote your group
·  Update/check
·  Attend the welcome week fairs.
·  Hold an information session for prospective volunteers.
·  We would encourage you to have a presentation or leaflet prepared to hand out.
Ongoing during term 1 and 2 / Volunteer applies to join your volunteering project
·  Login to your group’s section of the website and contact prospective volunteer, letting them know they will need to ‘apply’ to become a volunteer as spaces are limited on some projects.
Ongoing during term 1 and 2 / Group reviews applications and organises selection process
·  Meet and greet, short interview or group interview
·  Committee selects appropriate volunteering for the project
·  Committee will need to contact staff if any of the prospective volunteers are under 18 (staff will need to risk assess etc)
Ongoing during term 1 and 2 / Group contacts successful and unsuccessful applicants
·  Success applicants: Committee contacts applicants, and reminds them of the next step e.g. meet and great, social to get to know other volunteers, training and a DBS check if applicable (Guild staff will contact students directly for DBS Check)
·  Unsuccessful applicants: Committee can either contact the student themselves (i.e. is there another recruitment period later in the year?), or send the contact information to the volunteering office and staff will contact them and also let them know about other opportunities.
Ongoing during term 1 and 2 / Group contacts Volunteering with the list of successful applicants
·  Group submits a list of successful applicants to (Name, email, phone number)
·  Staff will email successful applicants with a link to apply for a DBS Check online (if applicable)
·  Staff will check volunteers DBS Certificate and verify that they are able to take part in the relevant volunteering activity
·  Staff will inform the group once the DBS Certificate is verified and that the volunteer has completed Safeguarding Training (if applicable)
·  Staff will update members of the group on the website to ‘qualified volunteers’ so that the group knows the active volunteers and the ‘interested in volunteering’ members.
Ongoing during term 1 and 2 / Volunteers complete relevant training
·  Volunteering with children: Prospective volunteers with need to complete Safeguarding Training for Children (available online or upon request in person)
·  Volunteering with adults: Some activity may require Safeguarding for Adults Training, such as volunteering with the elderly (available online or upon request in person)
·  Staff will update members of the group on the website to ‘qualified volunteers’ so that the group knows the active volunteers and the ‘interested in volunteering’ members.
As soon as possible / Student can start to Volunteer
·  If the above process has been completed they can then start volunteering.
·  We will send you a list every week (or more often if requested) everyone who can volunteer so you can see who can attend sessions.

With this process, as with any others, please remember you can contact us with any concerns or queries.

Email or call us on 0121 251 2411 to ask us or to arrange a meeting if you want to chat in more detail.

As committee members, you have a responsibility to ensure that your volunteers are suitable to volunteer with you and we will be working with you to run this process.

5.0 Planning and Managing Your Activity

The following section will talk about how you canplan, fundraise and organise your group’s activity. Below are listed the sections that we will go through to enable you to run your activity throughout the year effectively.

5.1 Planning the Year

You will be involved in organising and delivering activities for your group. These steps are aimed to help you make your activities successful and enjoyable both your users and your volunteers.

You will be running activities for the entire year and that means you need to plan and make a budget.

Deciding on what activities you will be doing throughout the year

Creating an event programme will enable you to work out how much fundraising you and your committee will need to do to run all the activities that you want to do. You could also look at who could help you run some of the sessions that could reduce the costs, e.g. Could you borrow equipment from Circus Society to run a circus skills session.

Things to discuss


·  What venues will you use? Do you need to book it in advance?

·  Do you have any special requirements you need to request? E.g. tables for arts and crafts, wheelchair access. How will you get to the location?


·  Exactly what activities are you doing? (you might need to think about before, during and after the main activity)

·  What transport will you be using? How will you book this?

·  What equipment do you need? Do you have this or do you need to buy anything?

·  What do you need to tell the attendees/parents?

·  What paperwork do you need to complete for the activity?


·  Who is going to complete each task ahead of time (paperwork, inviting attendees, organising volunteers, transport, activities, etc)?

·  Who is going to be in charge of each element on the day? Who is in charge in general?

·  Who will be attending (volunteers, participants, etc)?


·  When is each person going to have their task done by?

·  When is the deadline for paperwork?

·  When will the event start or finish?

How and how much

·  How will you deal with any problems on the day?

·  How much will it all cost? Is it value for money?

·  How are you going to pay for the activity?

5.2 Top Tips for Getting the Best out of your Volunteers

1.  Let them know you are available. Answer their questions and respond to their emails (if you don’t get back to someone they won’t feel engaged)

2.  Make sure they know what’s expected of them

3.  Be a role model for them. They will look to you for guidance

4.  Make it a fun environment– everyone (you, them and the attendees) will have a great time.

5.  Be enthusiasticabout them and their volunteering. Tell them what impact they have on your group – you can’t run without volunteers

6.  Give them a chance.If they are keen but have missed out on signing up for a session a few times work with them to find an opportunity to volunteer, otherwise they will lose interest