Policy Statement

As a charity, people are our most important asset. Volunteers play a particularly important role in the work of Festina Lente. We therefore recognise that it is crucial that we attract volunteers to our organisation to help us achieve our charitable purpose and associated goals.

We provide appropriate support and supervision to allow volunteers to realise their full potential in their role with Festina Lente. We appreciate and value the significant contributions that volunteers make to the aims and objectives of Festina Lente.  We are committed to compliance with all relevant legislative obligations relating to the environment in which our volunteers carry out their role.



Festina Lente will consider involving anyone who wishes to volunteer with us. Prospective volunteers however must demonstrate a commitment to the aims of Festina Lente and their availability as volunteers must align with the needs of our organisation.

We provide a volunteer recruitment process, which is free from any unlawful discrimination.

For some volunteer roles, specific selection criteria may apply to determine the suitability of a volunteer candidate to a particular role. In addition, selection criteria may become relevant where there are more applicants for a particular volunteer role than positions available. Selection criteria are based on the relevant skills, qualifications and experience of volunteer candidates.


Recruitment and Selection

Depending on the role to be filled, our recruitment and selection process may include the following stages:


  • Preparing a Volunteer Role Description;
  • Preparing and placing a volunteer recruitment advertisement;
  • Agreeing selection criteria;
  • Meeting volunteer candidates, collectively or individually, to discuss the nature and expectations of the volunteer role;
  • Shortlisting applicants against agreed selection criteria;
  • Notifying interview candidates and unsuccessful applicants;
  • Interviewing of candidate volunteers by a suitably briefed interview panel;
  • Assessing candidates against agreed selection criteria;
  • Offering a volunteer role to the successful candidate(s);
  • Notifying unsuccessful candidates;
  • Verifying relevant educational qualifications of successful candidate(s);
  • Checking employment or other references with referees nominated by a successful volunteer candidate;
  • Issuing a volunteer agreement for the volunteer’s signature;
  • Completion of Garda vetting;
  • Ratification of appointments by the board of charity trustee where required;
  • Providing interview feedback to unsuccessful candidates who request it.


Confidentiality and Data Protection

Festina Lente respects the right to privacy and confidentiality of our volunteers and prospective volunteers.

Festina Lente may from time to time in the course of administering its business, and exercising its legal rights and performing its legal obligations in connection with the recruitment of volunteers, need to process both personal data and special categories of personal data (including, for example, information relating to health). Festina Lente will process such data in accordance with the applicable data protection legislation including the General Data Protection Regulation and implementing legislation. Further details in relation to what personal data is collected in relation to volunteers or prospective volunteers, and the purposes for which such data may be used are set out in charities’s data protection policy, (which may be amended or updated from time to time).


Reference Checks

References checks and any verification of educational qualifications, which involves contact with third parties will only take place once Festina Lente forms a clear view that it would like to recruit a candidate volunteer. Festina Lente will always request the permission of the candidate volunteer in advance of checking references or qualifications. Reference checks for every candidate volunteer are carried out in the same way. It is the policy of Festina Lente to seek 2 references, preferably from separate sources e.g. academic, employment, volunteering etc.


Training and Development

Before a volunteer commences their role, they will be invited to an induction. As part of their induction, the volunteer will be provided with a detailed Volunteer Role Description. The Volunteer Role Description specifies the responsibilities and tasks involved in the volunteer’s role, Festina Lente’s expectation as to the manner in which these responsibilities and tasks will be carried out and any other relevant information applicable to the role. The volunteer will have an opportunity to voice any queries they may have about their role. In addition, the volunteer will be provided with information about:


  • The vision, mission and organisational structure of Festina Lente;
  • How their role fits within the broader purpose of Festina Lente;
  • The supports available to volunteers in Festina Lente including key contacts, information about the volunteer’s supervisor/line manager and communication channels within Festina Lente;
  • The type of commitment expected of volunteers;
  • The space, equipment and facilities necessary for the volunteer to carry out their role;
  • Health and safety, including any applicable risk assessments in respect of the volunteer’s role;
  • Festina Lente’s Code of Conduct for Volunteers;
  • Details of Festina Lente’s grievance and disciplinary procedures;
  • All other relevant policies and procedures of Festina Lente;


An appropriate level of training is offered to all volunteers to enable them to fulfil their role as effectively as possible.


Trial Period

A trial period may be set in respect of volunteer roles to ensure both the volunteer and Festina Lente are satisfied with the volunteering arrangement. The duration of the trial period is dependent on the nature and hours of the volunteer role.


Support and Supervision

Volunteers have access to support and supervision during their trial period and throughout their volunteering period. Difficulties that arise will be dealt with in a fair, open and efficient way and in line with Festina Lente’s grievance and disciplinary procedures. All volunteers are allocated a designated supervisor/point of contact who they should contact if they have any questions about their role or if any difficulties arise in the course of carrying out their role.



Volunteers may be reimbursed for expenses incurred, in line with the Festina Lente’s policies and procedures and by prior arrangement only.


Review of Policy

The board of charity trustees will review this policy at 3-year intervals or as appropriate. The Deputy CEO is responsible for ensuring that this policy is implemented effectively. All other staff and volunteers, including charity trustees, are expected to facilitate this process.