Rights of volunteers
Are you engaged in voluntary activities benefiting your community or youth in general, but aren’t sure what rights you’re entitled to as a volunteer? The Ministry of Culture, Sports and Youth has issued an Administrative Instruction outlining the rights of volunteers. Social organizations of which you are part must first have written agreements with volunteers, which outline the scope of work and other relevant details. Organizations must also report volunteers to the municipal directorate responsible for youth and issue volunteer ID’s. According to the AI, organizations should treat volunteers equally, adequately inform them of the nature of their work (especially the risks), give them adequate tools, provide them with skills, register their volunteer work, ensure public transport in case of need, offer a meal during activities and make sure that their volunteer work is not used for personal profit, etc. Additionally, minors under 18 are not allowed to be engaged in volunteer work which lasts more than 86 hours a month.
Every time you volunteer, you do so as part of some structure – whether it is a spontaneous organization, an NGO, a political party, or a business. Your organizer should make sure that the rights of volunteers are respected as relayed by the Administrative Instruction and other applicable laws.
Youth organizations and volunteer work are supervised by their respective municipal directorate dealing with youth issues. You can address any complaints or seek guidance on your rights as a volunteer to this directorate.