A pilot mediation and ADR service is being offered to help volunteers and volunteer managers with conflict resolution.
ADR professionals will offer their time free of charge for appropriate cases. They will mediate or facilitate conversations that might avoid the cost and distraction caused by damaging conflict. All volunteer mediators are nationally accredited.
The Scheme, known as Voluntas, was initiated by an independent group made up of mediators, lawyers, academics and representatives of the volunteer, NFP and NGO sectors. The first point of contact for the accessing the service is the Centre for Volunteering. The basic details are then passed on to Voluntas who assess whether the dispute could benefit from a neutral third party. All details are kept confidential.
Examples of conflict and disputes for which the Pilot provide support include:
- interpersonal disputes between volunteers or members of NGO and NFP organisations;
- disputes between staff or between staff and management of NGO and NFP organisations that cannot otherwise afford ADR services; and
- employment disputes between staff or volunteers and NGO/NFP organisations that cannot otherwise afford ADR services.
The service will also assist where one of the parties is legally represented pro bono.
The rationale for the pilot scheme is that Voluntas members are passionate about sharing their time and expertise to provide services to volunteers who give their time so generously to organisations. Organisations that cannot afford the expense of protracted disputes.
The trial service is expected to run until August 2016.
For more information, see contact details below: