2.6 Quality assurance
The Charities Regulator
The Charities Regulator is a public body that maintains a public register of charitable organisations operating in Ireland and ensure their compliance with the Charities Acts. Under Part 4 of the Charities Act 2009 the Charities Regulator has the power to appoint investigators to investigate the affairs of any charitable organisation.
The Charities Regulator has created a Charities Governance Code, which explains the minimum standards you should meet to effectively manage and control your charity. Charities must comply with the code, or where they are not complying with the code, explain why this is the case. While this code is not strictly about volunteer-management, it does contain some elements to help ensure quality volunteer-management. For example, within the Compliance Record Form, one of the 'Core standards for leading people' is 'Make sure there are arrangements in place for the effective involvement of any volunteers, including what to do if any problems arise'. Registered charities must list 'Actions our charity takes to meet the standards' and 'Evidence of our actions'.
The Charities Regulator has also created template policies (such as a Sample Volunteer Recruitment Policy and a Sample Volunteer Recruitment Policy) which organisations working with volunteers can modify and adopt to help ensure with quality assurance.
Investing in Volunteers
Volunteer Ireland manages Investing in Volunteers (IiV) which is the national quality standard for good practice in volunteer management, in the Republic of Ireland. The standards provide organisations with the framework to benchmark the quality of their volunteer programme.
- Guiding organisations in putting the necessary steps in place to improve volunteer retention;
- Helping organisations manage volunteer programmes more easily and effectively;
- Helping organisations with their reputation so volunteers want to be involved;
- Helping organisations deliver a quality service to their clients.
Volunteer Ireland is currently piloting a new user-friendly quality standard to support, recognise and reward groups who are good at involving volunteers. The award is funded by the National Volunteering Strategy and is designed to be accessible by organisations of all sizes.
Evaluation of Volunteer Centres
Volunteering Ireland also develops and supports best practice in volunteering and Volunteer Centres. This includes the evaluation of Volunteer Centres according to the quality standard framework.