Standard 7: Volunteers, Staff and Consultants
The land trust has volunteers, staff and/or consultants with appropriate skills and in sufficient numbers to carry out its programs.
The work of a land trust is substantial, diverse and often technical or specialized, and includes fundraising, public relations, financial management, landowner contact, designing and carrying out transactions, legal and tax matters, and land and/or conservation agreement monitoring and management. A land trust that acquires, owns, or manages land or conservation agreements, even temporarily, is dealing with complex issues and thousands or even millions of dollars’ worth of assets. Conducting this work properly takes trained individuals. If a land trust is completely managed by volunteers, they have a responsibility to see that the work is carried out with appropriate expertise and supervision, and that a sufficient number of people share the work. If the land trust has staff, it must be sure that the staff is properly trained to manage the complex tasks of land conservation, and the board must establish appropriate policies and procedures to guide staff. All land trusts must engage outside expert help in the event they do not have sufficient time or expertise in-house and must be sure to select projects that are consistent with their capacity.
- Income Tax Act, SC 1985, c. I;
see Canada Revenue Agency guide “Employee or Self-Employed?” at:
- Employment Standards Act, RSBC 1996, c. 113.
- Workers Compensation Act, RSBC 1996, c. 492.
- Human Rights Code, RSBC 1996, c. 210.
- Canada Pension Plan, c. C-8.
- Employment Insurance Act, SC 1996, c. 23.
If the land trust uses volunteers, it has a program to recruit, screen, train, supervise and recognize its volunteers.
Volunteers provide tremendous benefits to a land trust and may be one of the organization’s strongest assets. In many organizations, they perform the work that would otherwise be done by paid staff. In other organizations, they reduce the workload on staff and dramatically expand a land trust’s capacity. If not used effectively, however, volunteers can be a drain on the organization and they may feel unrewarded for their efforts. Poorly trained or unsupervised volunteers can even pose liability problems. A land trust that wishes to engage volunteers effectively to accomplish important work should establish a program for recruiting, screening, training, supervising, and recognizing them.
CLTA Assessment Questions
- Briefly describe how the land trust recruits and trains its volunteers
Resources: Example Policies & Template Documents
- CVLT Volunteer Application Form
- GLT Phone Drop in Volunteer Form
- GLT Volunteer Equipment Sign In Out
- CVLT Volunteer Activity Log
- CCLT Volunteer Position Template
- SSIC Volunteer Application Form
- NTNB Volunteer Stewards Policy
- CCLT Volunteer Intro Policy
- TLC Volunteer Policy
- CVLT Volunteer Policy and Procedures
- GLT Volunteer Policy and Procedure
- CVLT Special Events Planners Volunteer Assignment Outline
- Evergreen Volunteer Management Booklet
- GLT Volunteer Invasive Plants Info Sheet
- GLT Trail Building Maintenance Volunteer Assignment Outline
- CVLT Covenant Monitors Volunteer Assignment Outline
- Voluntary Sector Research
- Introduction to CVLT Program for Volunteers
- GLT Invasive Species Volunteer Assignment Outline
- NCC Volunteer Guidelines
- CVLT Legal Land Protection Team Coordinator Volunteer Assignment Outline
- CVLT Programs Overview
- CVLT Volunteer Program Evaluation Volunteer
- CVLT Media Education Coordinator Volunteer Assignment Outline
- CVLT Newsletter Designer Volunteer Assignment Outline
- CVLT Program Manager Volunteer Assignment Outline
- CVLT Volunteer Program Summary
- GLT Administration Secretarial Volunteer Asignment Outline
- CVLT Promotional Writers Volunteer Assignment Outline
- CVLT Fundraising Special Events Coordinator Volunteer Assignment Outline
- Who are BCs Volunteers
- CVLT Volunteer Education Manual
- CVLT Volunteer Assignment Outline