Guidance for Volunteer Grounds Staff

We know that volunteers take great pride in their work. Volunteers should follow the latest Government guidelines (easily accessible on the GMA's Covid-19 webpages here) and not put themselves or others at risk. We advise that the volunteer network monitors the timings of any announcements of the various sports re opening for play. However, realistically this will be dependent on how we are able to slow the virus down and return to normality.

A question on many people’s lips is ‘can people still volunteer under the lockdown?’ The NCVO has spoken to the government and looked at the guidance. Here’s what they know.

Are people still allowed to volunteer?

The announcement from the government on 23 March 2020 made it clear. The single most important action we can all take is to stay at home. If people are volunteering from home, great – carry on.

However, if volunteering means people need to leave the house, this should be done following government advice. This includes exceptions to the ‘stay at home’ instruction for people providing care to others and needing to travel. In other words, people can go out to volunteer if they’re providing help to vulnerable people or if their volunteering cannot be done from home.

The GMA advises grounds care volunteers to consider if, in the context of reducing the risk of you catching or speading Coronavirus, you think the maintenance work needs be done at present. The GMA will shortly be issuing guidelines on minmum maintenance tasks for volunteers in different sectors. 

As the professional body for grounds management we appreciate the lifecycle of natural turf and the passion for high quality but, strongly advise volunteers and their clubs to consider the risk to life.

For information for volunteers in consideration of Covid-19 please click here       

For information for volunteers during this time of restricted travel and going out from home click here

The Health and Safety Executive, helps workers understand how they can stay safe and well. They work to ensure everyone has the right to come home safe and well from their job. 

As many volunteers work alone when conducting grounds maintenance it is important that they, and their clubs, consider the risks of lone working and work with their clubs to ensure hazards are reduced and good lone working practices can be put in place. The issues relating to Covid-19 shoud be considered. The HSE have produced advice and best practice on lone working. While it is not written form the perspective of Coronavirus there are principles and guidleines that will be helpful to lone working grounds management volunteers. Click here