Informal & Spontaneous Volunteers

In a pandemic, informal volunteering is encouraged.

What kind of Informal Volunteering can I do?

  • Shopping for friends and neighbours
  • Dog walking
  • Gardening
  • Cooking meals for neighbours
  • Phone checks

When can I volunteer?

  • If you are healthy and not in a High Risk category
  • If a risk assessment for your role has been conducted
  • If DHHS health and safety guidelines are followed
  • If background checks and safety protocols have been conducted
  • If the organization has current Volunteer Personal Accident and Public Liability insurance

These are the kind of Informal roles where volunteers could be helpful:

  • Receiving, packing and distributing relief packages for food banks or social support programs
  • Phone check-ins with people in quarantine or isolation
  • IT support by phone & email
  • Pharmacy deliveries
  • Letter writing to specific community groups (i.e. Aged Care Homes, prisons & detention centres, migrant workers)
  • Assisting Animal Shelters with a variety of tasks

Most of these roles require induction, training and strict protocols to be followed. Privacy and Confidentiality laws must still be upheld, and volunteers must be supported to manage challenging situations and interactions.

Volunteering Victoria has established weVolunteer a register for people wanting to register as Emergency Volunteers.  Organisations seeking Emergency Volunteers can also register their volunteering requirements.

Volunteers are matched to organisations in need according to postcode.

Organisations are responsible for completing all onboarding procedures and background checks for any new volunteers they engage.

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Mutual Aid Groups can fall into a legal grey area. Without a clear leadership structure and the necessary legal protections, the whole group – including all known members – can be held liable if there is a problem.

We recommend Mutual Aid Groups stay up to date with advice about health and safety, follow DHHS guidelines and get in touch with Justice Connect if they have any concerns. The safeguarding of all participants must be the first priority of any Mutual Aid Group.

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