DIA offers a variety of volunteer roles requiring an increasing level of commitment. Volunteers are expected to: model the best in volunteer behavior; demonstrate a commitment to DIA’s Mission and respect for the organization; and abide by DIA’s Core Values, Volunteer Code of Conduct, and other policies and procedures. DIA encourages volunteers to continue their engagement in a variety of volunteer roles. Mentoring to develop new volunteers is encouraged.
Volunteer Eligibility, Recruitment and Election
The sole qualification for volunteer engagement is suitability to perform a task on behalf of DIA while abiding by the DIA By-laws
, the Volunteer Code of Conduct, and other policies and procedures. Volunteers serve at the sole discretion of DIA and are recruited without regard to gender, handicap, age, race or other condition.
Volunteerism for DIA is promoted in the Get Involved
section, on site at major meetings, in print materials, and via email. In addition, volunteer leaders are encouraged to recruit and mentor new volunteers to assume leadership responsibilities and experience the benefits of volunteer engagement. Prospective volunteers may contact any of DIA’s offices for further information. Most volunteers are recruited by volunteer leaders and DIA staff. However, the DIA Board of Directors is elected by the worldwide DIA membership and the Chairs of the Special Interest Area Communities are elected by their community members.
Volunteers and DIA staff perform as a team in implementing the programs that support DIA and its mission. Volunteers agree to actively perform their duties to the best of their abilities, abide by the policies and procedures of the organization, and contribute to a collegial, inclusive, collaborative, positive, respectful, and professional environment for the work of the organization. Volunteer leaders are expected to model the best in volunteer behavior and commitment to DIA and its mission.
Volunteers perform their tasks at the direction of and on behalf of DIA without compensation or expectation of compensation. Although volunteers are not paid or reimbursed for most expenses related to their volunteer work, some benefits and expense reimbursements are defined for some volunteer assignments. For reimbursement of defined expenses, volunteers are requested to submit the appropriate paper work within two weeks of the date the expense was incurred. Prior approval is required before any major expenditure.
Volunteers are expected to perform their duties on a timely basis. If expecting to be absent from a scheduled duty or if longer able to meet a volunteer commitment, volunteers should inform volunteer leadership and/or DIA staff as far in advance as possible so that alternative arrangements may be made.
Volunteer Orientation and Training
DIA staff or volunteer leadership will provide volunteer orientation which contains the information required to perform their volunteer work effectively. The orientation includes: an overview of DIA, its mission, policies, and procedures; roles and responsibilities; the Volunteer Program; DIA Core Values; the Volunteer Code of Conduct; and pertinent benefits or reimbursement guidelines. Charters and operational guidelines that have been developed for volunteer leadership positions will be provided. It is important for volunteers to have an understanding of the operations of the organization and the communication among the volunteer groups to be able to perform their duties appropriately.
Length of Volunteer Service
All volunteer positions have a set term of duration. These terms do not exceed two – three years, with an option for one renewal period at the discretion of volunteer leadership or DIA staff. All volunteer assignments end at the conclusion of their set term, without expectation or requirement of re-assignment to the incumbent. DIA requests that each volunteer leader recruit and mentor new volunteers to create the next generation of leaders.
A volunteer may act as a supervisor of other volunteers, provided that the supervising volunteer adheres to DIA policies and procedures, works closely with DIA staff, and shares DIA’s commitment to assuring an appropriate environment for the work of the organization. Volunteers in supervisory roles are responsible for reporting on the activities and issues of their group to other volunteer groups and DIA staff as appropriate.
Recognition for Volunteer Service
Volunteer leaders and DIA staff are encouraged to undertake informal methods of recognition of volunteer service on a regular basis throughout the year to thank the volunteers for their contribution to the organization. A more formal program of recognition for volunteer service highlights and rewards the contributions of volunteers to DIA and may include the following: distinguished service awards, small gifts; published recognition on the web site or in print; receptions; etc.
Change or Termination of a Volunteer’s Assignment
Any volunteer may at any time, for whatever reason, decide to terminate their engagement with DIA. It is requested that notice of this decision be communicated to DIA as soon as possible to assure a smooth transition.
All volunteers understand that DIA may at any time, for whatever reason, decide to change or terminate the volunteer’s assignment for reasons including, but not limited to, the following: change in strategic direction; lack participation in the program; discrimination or failure to be respectful of ethnic, national, or cultural differences; failure to satisfactorily perform assigned duties or adhere to DIA’s policies and procedures; absenteeism; disrespectful behavior toward DIA, its volunteers or staff; misuse of DIA proprietary information, etc.
Maintenance of Volunteer Records
A record of volunteer activity of each DIA volunteer is maintained by DIA. Volunteers and designated DIA staff are responsible for submitting all appropriate records of volunteer engagement and information to DIA in a timely and accurate fashion.
Report of Volunteer Engagement
The Worldwide Volunteer Services Department will provide an annual report on volunteer engagement.