The National Consumer Protection Technical Resource Center: The Center of Service & Information for SMPs
Volunteer management in the SMP program is challenging and rewarding work. Those who manage SMP volunteer programs are responsible for planning, supporting, and evaluating the delivery of services through volunteers who conduct outreach, make presentations, and provide counseling. Because the safety of the volunteers and the program’s beneficiaries is a top priority, volunteer management also involves managing risks through appropriate screening, placement, training, and supervision.
The U.S. Administration on Aging (AoA) has implemented a Volunteer Risk and Program Management (VRPM) project aiming to: 1) decrease and manage risks related to volunteer involvement in SMPs and 2) increase the management and coordination of volunteer efforts. Click here for more project information.
As part of the VRPM project described above, the Administration on Aging has developed comprehensive VRPM policies for SMPs. They provide guidance and direction to staff and volunteers and are designed to enhance the quality, effectiveness, and safety of SMP services. The policies need to be implemented by the SMP projects in three stages between 2013 and 2014. For details on the specific deadlines, please see the resources below.
A wide range of VRPM Policy Implementation Materials have been developed to assist SMPs in implementing the VRPM policies, including an Enactment Guide, Policy Implementation Guide, and companion guides on screening, risk assessment, and volunteer performance management, as well as sample forms, checklists, and templates.
Building a strong volunteer program takes time and attention. Those who serve as Coordinators of Volunteers have responsibility for many aspects of program management including recruitment, screening, placement, training, supervision, performance management, recognition, retention and implementing risk management strategies.