Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Hello Labor! Hello Liberals! Volunteer Management Policy?

Volunteer Management Political Idea.

Here in Australia things are heating up politically in what will be an election year. Polls are indicating that it could be a tight contest between the labor party and the Coalition. Our Prime Minister Kevin Rudd and opposition leader Tony Abbott are in full election fighting mode!

As a lover of the political process I will be watching even more closely!

Politicians. We see them often at volunteering events. In fairness to them, many make the effort to attend events that rightly recognize community effort in our society.

It is often forgotten in volunteerism land that volunteering plays a large part in the political process. All political parties engage volunteers. Check out the Labor and Liberal website and you will see how they actively seek volunteers for their campaigns. I haven’t seen anywhere if they actually engage salaried volunteer managers to lead their programs. A good idea? Be interesting to gauge if some “purists” think that this is not real volunteering!

But volunteering it is and is called as such by all parties.
In a much earlier posts I talked about writing to parties looking for some policy on support for the volunteer management sector.
I think I may just leave it as just this post.

And here’s the reason why.

Parties are always looking for innovative policies.

Here’s one policy opportunity for any party interested.

I’ll even write the announcement for yez!

“Our party has always been a supporter of the volunteering sector and recognizes the contribution of the millions of volunteers in our nation. We will continue to support volunteering by (fill blanks in here)
We also recognize the contribution that volunteer managers are making. We recognise that volunteer projects and programs require planning and organizing as well as coordination and leadership. True leaders inspire and we recognize that leaders of volunteer teams facilitate positive change in our community. We value the growing profession that is volunteer management and importantly we recognize it as a profession. Our party will develop policy to ensure that there is more focus on having adequate resources available to ensure organisations engage volunteer management.

Because our party understands that volunteers do not come for free. We understand that it is important that volunteers receive adequate training and orientation. We believe volunteers should receive recognition for their contribution and should be treated equitably by the organisations that engage them. Our party believes that the rights of volunteers should be understood and protected by an ethical profession. We therefore will undertake to provide funding for a professional association of Volunteer Management. We will provide funding for staff to administer the organisation which will ensure there is an accreditation process for volunteer management and that there is a robust scholarship program for the field.

We will also explore improvements in the educational path to volunteer management. Our minister for volunteering will also engage the VM sector more robustly ensuring the sector is consulted with other stakeholders on issues pertaining to volunteering. Our party believes it is time Volunteer Managers became fuller stakeholders! Our party believes that the Volunteer Management sector is a natural advocate of volunteerism and we belive that this sector is indisputably an important cog in the wheel of civil engagement."

Sure the above needs much tweaking. Add to it if you can.
Will any politician ever come across this humble little blog? I aint sending it anywhere. But anyone can use it.

Let’s see what happens


  1. I sent this blog to Sen Ursula Stephens

    Martin J Cowling

  2. A Brilliant article DJ!!! Election years are a great opportunity to lobby both government and opposition leaders. This is a time when they are most keen to listen to anyone who comes up with a reasonable proposal. Anything from which they think that they can get political mileage or votes.

    Why aren't you sending your blogpost anywhere DJ?

    Your blog has attracted a lot of interest from around the world but remains in the volunteer management sphere. You may be lucky enough to have a potitical leader visit your blog but I doubt that they will find it amidst the plethora of information that they receive on a daily basis.

    If you are serious about this you have to get out of your comfort zone and use any political connections that you have, make an appointment to see these leaders (they do tour the country during election campaigns - so you don't have to go to Canberra) and put forward your proposal face to face.

    You've gotta ask!!! The worst thing that can happen is that they say "No" but what if they say "Yes"!!! Just imagine where the Volunteer Management Sector could go then. Thoughts become things so think huge positive ones!!!

  3. Love your optimism DJ but not confident there will be many takers of your New View. You've only got to scan UK pre-election statements seen on i-volunteer.org.uk, and then the scandalous promises issued by the coalition government, to see the gap between political intentions and the reality of managing community services, and volunteers. Will Australia offer anything different?


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