Why should I volunteer?
There are many reasons to volunteer:
- Volunteering provides an opportunity to make a difference in your local community and it can be an extremely rewarding experience.
- Volunteering offers new ways to develop your skills and increase your experience. For example research shows that volunteering can help with developing communication skills and improving an individual’s ability to adapt to different environments and balance competing priorities.
- Importantly, volunteering can contribute to your overall wellbeing and helps to instill an attitude of care and responsibility for the wider community.
- Volunteering brings all walks of life together and no matter your personality, interests, or background, you're bound to make new friends.
What types of volunteering are there?
yes4Good helps to match your skills and interests to hundreds of volunteer opportunities across more than 1,000 charities and community groups. The website includes both skilled and unskilled volunteering for individuals and teams.
Skilled volunteering puts your skills and talents to work for the benefit of the community. Examples include project management, public relations, administration, event management, legal and governance or even advising on a Board. Unskilled volunteering includes roles like tree planting and cooking for the homeless.
Please use the drop down menu or the Search functionality to find your perfect role.
Do I have to use the website to find a volunteer opportunity?
You are welcome to source your own volunteer opportunity. However, it’s a good idea to browse the website before you choose which volunteer opportunity is right for you.
What is the process for taking volunteer leave?
Please apply for leave via HR Central selecting ‘volunteer leave’ from the drop down options and enter the name of the organisation you are volunteering for, or if your activity has a item code from Goodcomany add that in the space provided.
Who approves my volunteer leave?
Approval of volunteer leave is provided by your Line Manager (as per other leave requests) and is subject to operational requirements.
My manager won’t approve my volunteer leave. What should I do?
Optus will try to accommodate all requests for volunteer leave where possible. Please ensure that you provide your manager with suitable notice to ensure we can accommodate your request within the bounds of our business requirements.
How do I organise a team volunteer activity?
Team volunteering can be organised through the yes4Good website. When you’re applying for a volunteer position, tick the box which says ‘team application’ and enter email addresses for your team members.
Goodcompany will coordinate team volunteering activities between your team and the community organisation. If you’d like to discuss team volunteering with Goodcompany, please email them here.
Will Optus cover my expenses for volunteering?
Some volunteering opportunities may incur a charge to cover costs of establishing the event. For example, a community centre may ask for a monetary contribution to cover the costs of a team volunteering activity where employees prepare meals for homeless people. If costs are incurred to undertake the volunteering activity, these should be covered by the individual or individual’s cost centre, with the approval of the cost centre manager. If approval is given to use the cost centre, pay on a credit card and ask for a receipt to make the claim.
I am involved with a charity outside of work and would like to advertise a volunteer opportunity on the website. What is the process?
All volunteer opportunities are housed on the yes4Good website. There are a few little rules about what charities we can put on yes4Good – they need to have Deductible Gift Recipient (DGR) Item 1 and Tax Concession Charity (TCC) status.
You can check to see if a charity has DGR item 1 by doing a search here. If your charity has the right status then drop us a line at email@example.com and the yes4Good team at Goodcompany will contact your charity and do their best to get them on the list.
How can I track how much time I’ve given?
You track the volunteer opportunities you’ve applied for and how much time you’ve volunteered, by clicking on your name in the top right hand corner on yes4Good, and then clicking on ‘volunteering’ on the left hand side.
How do I apply for a volunteer opportunity?
- Select ‘time’ from the homepage or on the right hand side of the navigation bar
- Under ‘Find volunteer opportunities’ fill in the boxes - select your skill, location, availability and suitable for
- Select an opportunity that appeals to you and click ‘view’
- Click ‘volunteer’ at the end of the description
- Fill in the details on the application page and click ‘apply as volunteer’
- Your application will be sent to the charity who will respond to you directly
Can I ask my colleagues to help me?
Absolutely. We encourage you to job share the project if it will enable you to deliver it on time and more effectively. When you apply for the role, simply tick the box for ‘Team Application’ and add the names and email addresses of your team members. Goodcompany can also help to coordinate team volunteering activities.
How much time do I have to commit to the project?
All volunteer projects vary in length. Some will require only several hours of your time, others may involve several hours over weeks or months and some may involve an ongoing commitment such as joining the board or committee of a not-for-profit. Each volunteer opportunity on the site includes some information about the time commitment. Please note that Optus provides employees with one day of paid leave for volunteering. Employees wanting to volunteer more than one day or on an ongoing basis will need to do so in their own time.
I’ve applied for a volunteer opportunity but haven’t received a response. What should I do?
Please contact Goodcompany if you have not heard back from the community group within two weeks of applying. It is possible the contact person is away or otherwise unable to check their emails. Contact Goodcompany email them here.
What if I have committed but I can no longer help out?
When you first meet with the community group, be open and honest about your level of commitment (taking into account your professional and personal commitments). If you think that it’s too much of a commitment then you are entitled to withdraw at this stage. However, once you agree to proceed with the project, the community group will be relying on you and it costs them time and money if you pull out of the project.
If you need to withdraw once the project is already underway, ask your colleagues if they are interested in helping out and talk to Goodcompany to see if they can help find someone else. The most important thing is to communicate with the community group and/or Goodcompany about your situation.
What if I have a genuine interest in the area the project falls under but don't necessarily have the skills or experience in that particular area, can I still be considered?
Yes. You can still apply for the project (particularly if you are passionate about the cause/issue) and Goodcompany might be able to find you another project at that same organisation if you are not the right match for that particular project.
What if the project turns out to be different to what I thought and I don't have the right skills?
It’s important to communicate with the community group if you think you don’t have the right skills. This may occur when you (and the community group) find out more about the project requirements. If you don’t have the right skills, you might want to work together with the group to re-scope the project. This is still very helpful. You may also be able to identify a colleague with the right skills or ask Goodcompany to help the group to find a volunteer with the right skills.
Will I get feedback about my contribution?
Goodcompany encourages all our community groups to provide you with feedback at the end of the project. At the conclusion of the project, Goodcompany will also ask you and the community group to complete a detailed report about your experience. This is your chance to provide us with feedback about the volunteering experience.
Will my ABCN volunteering be added to yes4Good?
Yes. Optus will manually add your ABCN volunteer hours at the end of each year, but they will not show in your history. Do not log your ABCN volunteer leave through HR Central.