Volunteer and staff policy

Policy for Volunteers and Staff

Recruitment, Selection and Induction

Podium.me is committed to promoting the welfare of children and young people and keeping them safe.

We are also committed to equality, valuing diversity and working inclusively across all of our activities.

We aim to have a team that represents a variety of backgrounds and cultures and can provide the relevant knowledge, abilities and skills for our charity.

The purpose of the policy

  • To encourage volunteers to join the team
  • To take reasonable steps to prevent unsuitable people from joining the team
  • To recruit, select and manage team members in a way that complies with legislation designed to combat inequality and discrimination
  • To ensure volunteers and new members of the team are given a proper induction

We recognise that

  • Our team is our most important resource
  • Unsuitable individuals sometimes seek out opportunities via employment or volunteering to have contact with children in order to harm them
  • Some groups face unfair discrimination
  • Young people benefit from our efforts to recruit skilled and committed volunteers and staff from a diverse range of backgrounds
  • New staff and volunteers cannot perform their role effectively unless they are inducted properly and receive ongoing support and supervision

Diversity and Equal Opportunities

Podium.me is firmly committed to diversity in all areas of its work. We believe we have much to learn from diverse cultures and perspectives, and that diversity will make our organisation more effective, to the benefit of all who are involved.

We are committed to developing and maintaining an organisation in which differing ideas, abilities, backgrounds and needs are fostered and valued, and where those with diverse backgrounds and experiences are able to participate and contribute.

We will regularly evaluate and monitor our progress towards diversity.

We find our volunteers through schools, colleges, universities, online or at events.


Anyone can be a volunteer Podium.me Journalist. In order to protect both our journalists and interviewees we have the following systems in place:

  • All new recruits will receive an email pack of information as part of their induction which explains how and where interviews can and should be conducted.  They are given advice for the protection of their own safety and others. By way of example, we advise that journalists do not meet strangers they do not know on their own or other than in public places.
  • We encourage journalists to inform us of who they are interviewing and where and when the interview will take place prior to the interview itself. We keep records of this activity.
  • We have a process for considering any interview proposals from journalists and advise journalists accordingly if we consider that the situation may be unsafe or inappropriate.
  • Every new journalist receives a welcome call to ask them what their main focus of interest is and what they hope to get from the experience. The rules of gaining consent for broadcasting voices are also explained. If the Podium.me staff member feels that the person is not suitable for the role, they reserve the right to tell the person that they are unsuitable.



  • To be considered for a one or two week internship, working closely with the Editor to develop features and other stories, you should already be a Podium.me Journalist.
  • If you have not been part of Podium.me before, you may be interviewed either over the phone, via Facetime or Skype.
  • The internship can be done remotely or based in The Pod in London.

Editors of news/features, sport, music and drama

  • If you take on any of the above roles, you will need to agree to a DBS check and to read the policies of Podium.me.

Podium.me will:

  • Introduce volunteers to how Podium.me works and involve them in the day to day events as appropriate
  • Provide volunteers with a main point of contact so they can tell us if they are not happy with their tasks and get feedback
  • Tell volunteers of appropriate opportunities as they arise to take part in workshops and training days

Volunteers will:

  • Help Podium.me by fulfilling the role of (journalist/intern/editor) and support our aims and objectives
  • Be open, honest and kind
  • Perform the volunteering role to the best of their ability
  • Follow Podium.me’s procedures, standards and policies in relation to staff, volunteers and others working with the charity
  • Make sure they are on time for all commitments that have been mutually agreed, or give reasonable notice if this is not possible
  • Provide referees if asked for and to agree to a DBS check if required

We recruit to paid roles at Podium.me by

  • Advertising all posts through appropriate media in a way that ensures that we attract high quality applicants from diverse backgrounds
  • Involving more than one person to shortlist applicants for interview
  • Conducting a face-to-face interview with anyone we may want to appoint
  • Obtaining two references, two pieces of identification and original copies of any necessary qualifications from candidates
  • Ensuring all staff have an up-to-date relevant DBS check
  • Provide an appropriate induction for all new staff
  • Ensure that all staff are made aware, during their induction period, of how to keep young people safe at Podium.me
  • Appointing all staff on a trial period initially, with a review before they are confirmed in post
  • Using the list of processes in Appendix A to follow a consistent procedure for recruitment, selection and induction of staff

We are committed to reviewing our policy and good practice annually.