Staff & Volunteers Intranet

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Office Staff Specifications

Person and Job Specifications

Volunteering & State Benefits

If you are receiving state benefits you are still allowed to volunteer. However, there are some rules that you need to be aware of to make sure that your volunteering doesn’t have an impact on the benefits you receive.

This guidance aims to help you start volunteering by giving an overview of what you need to know and providing some answers to some of the questions you may have before you start volunteering.

This doesn’t cover every situation and you may have questions about your individual circumstances. If you’re unsure about where you stand in relation to the rules, you can contact your local Volunteer Centre, or you should speak to your job coach or benefits adviser. Your local Citizen’s Advice Bureau may also be able to help.

Can I volunteer when I’m receiving state benefits?

People are allowed to volunteer while claiming state benefits, including means-tested benefits such as jobseeker’s allowance (JSA), incapacity benefit, income support, and employment and support allowance (ESA).

You can volunteer as many hours as you like while you’re getting benefits as long as you keep to the rules for getting them.

What are the rules?

The rules vary depending on the type of benefit you’re receiving, but there are some key principles that you need to bear in mind.

  • The volunteering you do must comply with the government’s definition of volunteering
  • The definition states that volunteering is ‘when you choose to give your time and energy to benefit other people without being paid for it’.

You can volunteer with any kind of organisation including:

  • charities
  • voluntary organisation or community groups
  • public-sector organisations, eg the NHS, police and other public services
  • social enterprises
  • local businesses.

It doesn’t count as volunteering if you are:

  • helping out a family member
  • given money other than being paid out-of-pocket expenses
  • under contract to do the work (this does not include any ‘volunteer agreement’ you may have).


You must notify your job coach or benefits adviser if you intend to start volunteering

Benefits claimants are required to notify their benefits adviser of their intention to start volunteering.


The organisation you volunteer for cannot give you any money except for reimbursing you for out-of-pocket expenses

These must be expenses that you’ve incurred in order to volunteer, for example the cost of travel, meals while out volunteering, care costs etc.

The organisation should collect receipts from you and reimburse exactly what you’ve spent. This means that, if needed, you could show your benefits adviser that any money you were getting was a reimbursement and not a payment.

If you’re receiving financial rewards beyond out-of-pocket expenses, this can be classed as income and will be liable for tax, and it can affect the benefits you receive. If you live with your parents or partner, their benefits could be affected if you get money, or anything else on top of expenses that could be seen as payment.


You must follow the rules for the specific benefit you are receiving and any plans or agreements you have in place

Make sure you are clear on this with your job coach or benefits adviser and be upfront about your intention to start volunteering.

You may have agreed an individual plan; for example, if you’re on JSA you may have a claimant commitment that you agreed with your work coach. This may identify specific tasks and activities to complete.

Before you start your volunteering, you should make sure that it’s part of this plan and that it has been agreed with your job coach or adviser.

If you don’t follow the plan, you may face penalties for failing to meet your responsibilities. Your work coach should review the plan regularly and let you know what penalties you could face. If they’ve been informed about your volunteering and it’s built into a plan to enable you to meet your other responsibilities, then it shouldn’t be the cause of sanctions or penalties.


Volunteering and universal credit

You can still volunteer if you’re on universal credit as long as you also undertake any activities, such as job searching, training or other requirements, identified by your Jobcentre Plus adviser. This is likely to be part of a claimant commitment.

How will I know what these requirements are?

When you first attend Jobcentre Plus, your adviser will decide which of four groups you will be put into, depending on your needs and circumstances. For example:

  • if you are unable to work because of illness or disability, or you have a child under one year old, you will have no work-related requirements
  • if you are the sole or main carer of a child aged between one and five years, you will be expected to attend a work-focused interview to help you keep in touch with the world of work and improve your opportunities for work
  • if you have a limited capacity to work, perhaps because of an illness or disability, you may be asked to undertake activities in preparation for work, such as training or work experience (‘work preparation requirements’)

Everyone else will be expected to take ‘all reasonable action’ to find a job or increase their hours or pay (‘all work-related requirements’).

Your adviser will draw up a claimant commitment in consultation with you. This will set out which group you are in and what actions, if any, you will be expected to take to find work, find better-paid work or increase your hours. It will also say what will happen if you don’t comply with this (your adviser may impose sanctions).


Does volunteering count as taking ‘reasonable action’ to find a job?

Yes, it can count towards up to 50% of the time you are expected to be looking for a job.*

This means that:

  • if you are required to spend 35 hours a week looking for a full-time job, half of this time (17.5 hours) can be spent volunteering
  • if you only volunteer five hours a week, then you will be required to spend 30 hours looking for work
  • if you are looking for part-time work, e.g. 16 hours a week, you can volunteer for up to eight hours and spend the rest of the time looking for work.

* This will not apply to you if you are in the no requirements, work-focused interview, or work preparation category.


Does that mean I can’t volunteer for more than 17.5 hours a week?

There are no restrictions on how many hours you can volunteer, but you will be required to spend at least 17.5 hours a week job-seeking if you’re looking for full-time work, or half the expected number of part-time hours if you’re looking for part-time work, as illustrated by the examples above.


Can my Jobcentre Plus adviser require me to volunteer?

No. Volunteering is something that you choose to do because you want to freely give your time and energy to benefit others. No one can force you to volunteer.

You may be required to undertake work experience or a formal work placement, perhaps in a voluntary organisation, but that is not volunteering.

Can my Jobcentre Plus adviser insist on the type of volunteering that I can do?

No. You choose where you want to give your time. However, you may find it useful to discuss with your adviser how you can use the skills and experience gained from volunteering in your search for a job.


Can my Jobcentre Plus adviser approach the Volunteer Centre or the organisation I volunteer for to check up on me?

No. You have chosen to volunteer and you have a separate relationship with both your Volunteer Centre and the organisation you volunteer for. They should not give out any details about you without your permission.


What happens if I don’t volunteer for as many hours a week as I agreed with my Jobcentre Plus adviser?

If there is a reason why you haven’t been able to volunteer for a time-limited period, for example you or your child was ill or you had to move house, then you may be temporarily exempt from meeting your requirements.

If not, then you should make sure that you make up the time in other work-related activities so that you don’t get penalised. Failure to comply with activities set out in your claimant commitment could lead to you being sanctioned, which could include the loss of your benefits.


What happens if the organisation I volunteer for reduces my hours?

Again, you may need to spend more time looking for work, or volunteering for another organisation to make up the time lost. It’s always worth explaining your situation to your volunteer manager and asking them not to change your hours without giving you notice or consulting you first.


I’ve been told that I have to be immediately available for work. If I’m volunteering, what happens if I get offered an interview or a job?

As a volunteer you are given a little more leeway: you have 48 hours to attend an interview and one week to take up a job offer.


Where can I get more help?



Office and Data Administrator

To act as the first point of contact for visitors and callers to Alert and to undertake a range of other administrative tasks as identified by the Facilities Manager.


Skills Required 

  • Self starter with the ability to work unsupervised
  • Demonstrable track record in an administrative position
  • Ability to communicate clearly and invite support and assistance from others where necessary
  • Ability to multi-task and problem solve



  • Must be courteous and personable with good interpersonal skills and a friendly manner.
  • Must be dependable, punctual, work well independently and as part of a team.
  • Willing to take initiative, and committed to meeting deadlines.
  • Excellent organizational, written and verbal skills.
  • Computer skills are a must – Knowledge of Office programs, including calandar, wordprocessing, and spreadsheets
  • Respect and maintain confidentiality of Faces In Focus clients, team members, funders, and donors.


Administration TrainingS upervision

  • Attends general volunteer orientation
  • Completes office orientation which includes training on the following items:
  • Phone System Tutorial
  • Data management Tutorial
  • Computer system orientation System
  • Training and supervision conducted by: designated trainer
  • Evaluation
  • All volunteers complete a 60 day probation and evaluation
  • Time Commitment
  • Once per week for 4 hours if not more


Reporting Structure

This job description reflects the present requirements of the post. It may be reviewed and amended as the duties and responsibilities of the job change and develop.





To be responsible for meeting fundraising targets by encouraging current and potential supporters to organise fundraising events, as well as organising our own promotional and fundraising events.

To work with individuals, communities, and businesses to raise awareness of the charity’s work, aims, and goals. Ultimately, to increase the contributions of those individuals and groups by building relationships and exploring new fundraising techniques and ideas.


Job Description

This job description reflects the present requirements of the post. It may be reviewed and amended as the duties and responsibilities of the job change and develop.


Duties and Responsibilities

1. Manage the fundraising and events team, including any volunteers, to ensure the smooth running of the department. Delegate work efficiently.
2. Research markets to identify opportunities for fundraising.
3. Take responsibility for all fundraising activities internally and externally.
4. Follow up each event from start to finish; ensuring costs are kept to a minimum.
5. Identify new and potential supporters and encourage them to organise their own fundraising events to raise funds for the charity.
6. Act as a main contact for supporters holding events to raise funds. Sustain a relationship with all fundraisers and encourage them to continue supporting through other events.
7. Send information/fundraising materials via telephone, post, fax or email when requested by potential supporters or current fundraisers. Follow up all requests.
8. Attend events, as necessary (sometimes outside contracted work hours). Arrive prepared and be polite, friendly and professional.
9. Prepare mail shots and correspondence using direct mailing to reach a wide range of potential and current donors.
10. Thank all donors immediately after donation is received and log all details.
11. Keep all supporters up to date with regular newsletters and appeal letters.
12. Work with all forms of the media (including use of websites, posters and newsletters) to promote market and advertise forthcoming events.
13. Organise promotional fundraising events from start to finish including:

  • producing detailed proposals (e.g. timelines, venues, suppliers, legal obligations, staffing and budgets);
  • securing and booking venues; ensuring insurance, legal, health and safety obligations are adhered to;
  • coordinating venue management, caterers, stand designers, contractors and equipment hire;
  • organising facilities for car parking, traffic control, security, first aid, hospitality and the media;
  • identifying and securing speakers or special guests; planning room layouts and the entertainment programme, scheduling workshops and demonstrations;
  • coordinating staff and volunteers;
  • selling sponsorship/stand/exhibition space to potential exhibitors/partners;
  • organising the production of tickets, posters, catalogues and sales brochures;
  • preparing information packs and promotional materials;
  • overseeing the dismantling and removal of the event and clearing the venue efficiently.
  • Keep clear and informative records of all communications with supporters on the fundraising database.
  • Log all donations and events.
  • Generate income to the agreed yearly targets and ensure expenditure is kept within the agreed set budget.
  • Work closely other departments and attend regular meetings to discuss collaborations and future fundraising and events.
  • Answer telephone enquiries from supporters in an appropriate manner and deal with enquiries efficiently, directing calls to other departments as necessary.


Additional Expectations:

  • Maintain good working relationships with all charity staff, volunteers, supporters, suppliers and members of the general public.
  • Maintain confidentiality in all areas of work at the charity to ensure the respect, dignity and rights to privacy of children, young people and their families.
  • Ensure that your conduct within and outside the charity does not conflict with professional expectations.
  • Undertake training as required.
  • Actively support all policy rules and procedures, as stated in the charity’s Company Handbook, including Fire, Health and Safety and Equal Opportunities.
  • Undertake any reasonable task requested by a manager of higher level of authority and carry out any other duties necessary to ensure the proper performance of the title of the post and it’s grading. Also, to carry out any other ad hoc duties that may be required from time to time to assist in the smooth running of the organisation.


What you will gain

  • Greater knowledge of fundraising.
  • Increased confidence in communicating with supporters.
  • Opportunity to develop your interpersonal and research skills.
  • Support from the team to ensure you meet your personal objectives.
  • Experience of working in an office environment.