Welcoming Volunteers

First impressions count and it is important each Group has a clear plan of how to welcome, induct and support new volunteers.  Volunteers who receive a warm welcome, who feel supported and are able to begin volunteering quickly are likely to stay with your Group in the future.

A Warm Welcome

A well-conducted induction process will help new volunteers settle in an will ensure you have recruited a committed and happy volunteer.

Provide Introductions
Knowing who people are is the first step to feeling welcome.  Introduce new volunteers to participants, volunteers, horses and ponies and anyone else they will need to know.

Guided Tour
Showing new volunteers around is a great way to break the ice. It is important that a new volunteer knows where to find the things they need.

Group Culture
Settling in to a new environment can be difficult, especially a tight knit community like an RDA Group.  It is important to help new volunteers understand the culture of a group the language used in sessions and how important information is communicated.

Questions Answered
New volunteers will have lots of questions.  In order to ensure volunteers are comfortable asking  it can be a good idea to nominate a volunteer mentor who can show volunteers how things work and answer any questions or concerns.

Download our Volunteer Welcome Pack

Download our induction factsheet

The Paperwork

There’s a danger of overwhelming new volunteers and yourself with forms, policies and procedures. Make sure you pace yourself so that volunteers understand what is required of them in terms of paperwork. Policies should be explained in a friendly manner as part of a bigger induction process which highlights why they are important.

Volunteer References

All prospective volunteers are required to nominate two referees. Updated reference form available now (June 2023)

Volunteer Agreement

You may wish to create a volunteer agreement to give to volunteers at your Group which outlines the Groups commitment to volunteers and in turn what it hopes for from it’s volunteers.  This can be a great reference point for agreements around induction and training, various policies and procedures and the commitment of the Group to support volunteers.

Read our factsheet on volunteer agreements

Download a sample volunteer agreement you can adapt for your own Group.

Page Last Updated: May 21, 2024