Frequently asked questions
What is Volunteering Northland?
We are a non-profit organisation that primarily acts as a recruitment and referral service for volunteers and non-profit organisations. We also provide advice and training to community organisations specifically to the volunteer coordinator.
How much will it cost me?
Our volunteer referral service is free.
What sort of jobs do you have?
Jobs depend on the kind of role you would fill in the organisation. That could be anything from laboring to fundraising, administration, working with youth or the elderly. Our database is always being updated with new jobs.
How long will I have to work for?
How long you work will depend on the job(s) you choose. Some jobs may require two hours per week and others may require more. One of the benefits of volunteering is that it can fit into your lifestyle.
How do I get a volunteer role?
On our website you can search for opportunities at organisations that are registered with Volunteering Northland or you could visit our office and we will help you find an opportunity that fits. We will exchange your contact details with the details of the volunteer coordinator at the organisation of your interest. The volunteer coordinator will then contact you. You might want to check out different opportunities.
Do I need a CV?
No. However, it may be a good idea to take your CV or similar documents when you go through the recruitment process with the organisation.
Will volunteer work result in paid work?
Occasionally a volunteer job does become a paid job. What volunteering does is give you the opportunity to learn new skills and gain up to date experience that may help you get into paid work. You will also be meeting people and making contacts. This can lead to further employment opportunities.
Can I come back for other options?
Yes, you can if the jobs you were referred to weren't what you wanted or if you did not gain a position.
What if I start a job and then find I don't like it?
If this happens, you can leave the job after consultation with the volunteer coordinator of the organisation. It would be only fair to give a few days' notice of your intention to leave.
How long will I have to commit for?
As a volunteer you are free to leave whenever you like. If things don't work out or your circumstances change, it's good to talk it through with the person in charge and give them some notice if possible.
Do I have to tell Volunteering Northland if I have accepted a job?
We would like you to tell us if you accept any of the jobs we have referred you to. This avoids other people being sent to jobs that are no longer available. We would also like to know if you decide not to take any jobs, either because you have changed your mind or found paid work.
Will I have a job contract?
Many organisations provide job contracts or volunteer agreements. These set out your obligations as a volunteer and also the organisation's obligations to you.
What will my obligations be?
Your obligations as a volunteer will include things such as turning up for work on time, doing the job to the best of your ability and getting on well with the people you are working with.
You will be told what an organisation expects from you before you accept the job. Sometimes a police check will be necessary, sometimes the organisation will ask you to do an interview, or sign a job contract or a volunteer agreement.
What will the organisation's obligations be?
The organisation's obligations will be such things as giving you worthwhile and challenging work, recognising you as a valued team member and giving you training and support.
Many organisations reimburse their volunteers for out of pocket expenses. They also may provide a reference for you after you have been in the job for a certain period of time.
Can I claim benefits while volunteering?
Yes. The policies of Work and Income are clear that you can volunteer. It is encouraged. You can find all the latest information about volunteering and benefits, on their website, www.workandincome.govt.nz. Search for “volunteering’.
Can I volunteer if I have a disability?
Yes there are opportunities for everybody.
What's in it for me?
- Develop new and existing skills
- Gain work experience
- Network in your community
- Have fun
- Meet a diverse range of people
- Improve your language skills
- Make a valuable contribution to your community
Tips to help you start volunteering.
- Think about what you want from volunteering; new skills, fun, a chance to contribute to a specific cause or the community in general. All reasons are valid.
- Think about what you have to offer; work skills, enthusiasm, life skills
- Think about how much time you have to give, when and how often.
- Use our website to browse through available opportunities.
- Everyone can volunteer. Whatever your skills, experience or background you should be able to find an opportunity.
- Just try it out.