Transitioning of Volunteer Program
We are looking to change our volunteer program so that we can introduce community-service-based opportunities and then gradually transition into omitting the in-store opportunities, while retaining volunteer benefits for the following: outreach participation and representation at off-site community events, community service at partnering organizations, and our Board members.
This transition would already be a tricky one to make, but to exaserbate the complexity, my Co-op is always preparing to transition from regular discounts at the register to patronage refunds. So we're also giving consideration to how we will provide volunteer credit and are looking at coupons or vouchers of some kind.
I'm wondering if anyone on here has undergone a similar transition in the past or present, that may be willing to let me pick their brains about some logistics, including:
I'm sure I could think of a million more, but I'll stop there for now and welcome any input folks may have, or resources you can guide me to. At some point I think a lawyer will need to be consulted on some of these matters, but figured it'd be good to have some industry perspectives to inform my trajectory before I can consult with legal help about the structure I'm hoping our program to head in.
- My GM thinks that avoiding in-store shifts sidesteps much of the wage/labor and liability concerns that began the interest in transitioning the program in the first place, yet I'm not sure how outreach participation could still be permitted since currently those opportunities still entail the same scheduling, benefits, liabilities, and so on. So the simple fact they're off-site doesn't seem to me that it resolves the concern, but perhaps I'm not seeing some aspect that does make it permissible to maintain?
- I'm also wondering how to address the fact that our Board members are technically volunteers when transitioning the program. When we originally discussed this change we planned to ONLY retain community-service-based opportunities, but that overlooked the fact we obviously still want to our Board members receiving benefits.
- In terms of rewards/benefits, my Volunteer Coordinator is convincing me that coupons are a shade of grey in terms of the legal wage/labor/reimbursement categories, but for some reason believes a token system would be legit. I must confess that I haven't had time to research this detail much at all, but can't make sense of why one would be okay and not the other.