4-H Youth Development Program
4-H Youth Development Program
4-H Youth Development Program
University of California
4-H Youth Development Program

Chapter 6: 4-H Adult Volunteers, Parents, and Other Adults

Chapter 6

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I. INTRODUCTION

Volunteers, parents and other adults are a valued and essential part of the California 4-H Youth Development Program (4-H YDP), and have a profound impact on the life trajectory of 4-H members. Serving as an adult volunteer is a privilege and at the invitation of the University of California. Volunteer participation is supervised by the county 4-H YDP staff and county director. It is the responsibility of the 4-H YDP to identify, screen, select, train and support 4-H adult volunteers so they can successfully carry out their duties. Adult volunteer appointments are made annually, after reviewing program needs, as well as quality of service and past performance of the volunteer. The policies set forth in this chapter are designed to assure that the 4-H YDP engages caring, competent, and effective volunteers and provides a satisfying and rewarding experience for the adult volunteer that is beneficial to California 4-H members.

II. AGE REQUIREMENTS FOR ADULT VOLUNTEERS

  1. Definition
    An individual must be eighteen (18) years or older to become an adult volunteer. A 4-H adult volunteer cannot simultaneously be a 4-H member. Depending upon the roles and responsibilities of an adult volunteer position, additional age restrictions can be applied.
  2. County Authority
    4-H YDP staff have the authority to maintain procedures that are more stringent or set conditional age restrictions for adult volunteers.

III. CHAPERONES

  1. Definition
    Chaperone duties may be assigned to adult volunteers upon approval of the 4-H YDP staff. A chaperone is an adult volunteer at least twenty-one (21) years of age. He or she has the responsibility of a delegation of youth at a 4-H YDP event or activity. The event usually lasts more than twenty-four (24) hours with an overnight stay, and often involves travel.
  2. County Authority
    4-H YDP staff have the authority to maintain procedures that are more stringent or set conditional restrictions based on age of the chaperone.
  3. Parents and Guardians as Chaperones
    Parents/guardians who desire to serve as an overnight chaperone must be screened and appointed as an adult volunteer prior to serving in a chaperone capacity.

IV. PARENT/GUARDIAN INVOLVEMENT

  1. Introduction
    The 4-H YDP strives to provide quality leadership for youth participating in 4-H YDP programs, events, and activities. The opportunity to work with youth is a privileged position of trust that should be held only by those who are willing to demonstrate behaviors that fulfill this trust. Parents/guardians are encouraged to participate in the 4-H YDP in a variety of supportive positions.
  2. Behavior Guidelines
    4-H YDP staff are to provide parents/guardians with the 2016-2017 Parent-Guardian-Adult Participant Code of Conduct - English - pdf upon enrollment of their children in the 4-H YDP. Parents/guardians participating in the 4-H YDP are expected to abide by these guidelines.
  3. Behavioral Violations
    If parents/guardians do not follow these guidelines, they may be barred or censored from attending 4-H YDP activities. A child whose parents/guardians have been barred from participation or censored is still eligible to participate in the 4-H YDP.
  4. Non Participation
    Parent/guardian involvement cannot be required for youth to enroll in the 4-H YDP. However, the active support, cooperation, and involvement of parents/guardians are believed to increase the benefits to a member involved in the 4-H YDP experience.

V. AGENCY AND SCHOOL PERSONNEL PARTICIPATION

  1. Introduction
    Paid personnel of agencies or schools may work in a collaborative role with 4-H YDP staff in assessing community needs, identifying local resources, and conducting a 4-H YDP experience for youth in school settings and other community youth group contexts. 4-H YDP staff may provide research and education programs to other agencies that serve youth.
  2. Dual Roles of Agency Staff and Adult Volunteers
    Paid personnel of other agencies or schools may not simultaneously function as a 4-H YDP program collaborator and as a 4-H YDP adult volunteer.
  3. Use of MOU
    Prior to any collaborative effort, all parties should come to a verbal or written understanding about the roles and responsibilities of the 4-H YDP, each agency, and the staff and volunteers of each entity. Contact ANR’s  unit for further information regarding MOUs. Administrative Policies and Business Contracts.

VI. ADULT VOLUNTEER ROLES AND RESPONSIBILITIES

  1. Introduction
    The 4-H YDP staff set the 4-H YDP’s educational goals and standards, and recruit and train adult volunteers to deliver the program at the county level. 4-H adult volunteers implement the programs, providing logistical support for meetings and events, and directing the educational service to youth. Close cooperation and planning between 4-H YDP staff and adult volunteers is required to produce effective 4-H YD programs.
  2. Roles and Positions
    Adult volunteers serve in the following roles in the 4-H YDP:
    1. Organizational unit adult volunteers administer a 4-H YDP unit such as a club, special interest group, camp, or project club. See Sample_Adult_Volunteer_Position_Description-Organizational_Unit_Volunteer (Club Leader).
    2. Activity or event volunteers provide leadership within a specific, short-term 4-H YDP project or activity. These activity volunteers make preparations for the activity, obtain relevant literature and distribute it to adult and youth participants, and attend the activity or community event. See Sample_Adult_Volunteer_Position_Description-Activity_or_Event_Adult_Volunteer.
    3. Project or program volunteers have expertise in particular areas which they teach to participants, parents/guardians, or special interest groups. See Sample_Adult_Volunteer_Position_Description-Project_Adult_Volunteer.
    4. Resource/key volunteers have expertise in club organization, planning and conducting activities, or specialized subjects relating to projects. Unit volunteers and 4-H YDP staff often ask these individuals to serve as key resources at the club or county level. See Sample_Adult_Volunteer_Position_Description-Resource_Key_Adult_Volunteer.
    5. Other adult volunteers help with transportation, management, or recruitment. They may also serve as elected or appointed officers or committee members for the county council.
  3. Limitations of the Authority of Volunteers
    1. Volunteers may not sign contracts of any kind on behalf of UC, nor otherwise obligate the Regents of the University of California in any way. Likewise, clubs, councils and other 4-H groups are also prohibited from entering into contracts on behalf of UC.
    2. In the present-day business environment, virtually all contractual transactions result in the parties’ assumption of risk. When volunteers enter directly into business contracts they may become personally responsible for the associated liability.
    3. All agreements with outside organizations, agencies, and individuals must be executed by an authorized UC employee (at county level the county director), and must comply with all applicable UC policies and procedures governing the particular transaction. Observance of this restriction protects volunteers and ensures that UC’s General Liability, Automobile Liability, and Employment Practices Liability Self-Insurance Program, as well as the State of California Workers’ Compensation Program, may be applied as appropriate.
    4. In this specific context “volunteers” is construed to mean all individuals involved in the 4-H YDP who are not UC employees, including but not limited to chaperones and parents/guardians.
    5. In this specific context, “contracts” is construed to mean all business agreements including, but not limited to facilities use agreements, rental and lease agreements, employment contracts, fundraising agreements; service, consulting, and construction contracts, and so on.

VII. CONFLICT OF INTEREST AND/OR CONFLICT OF COMMITMENT

  1. Definition
    UC policy is that none of its faculty, staff, and/or volunteers shall engage in any activities that place them in a conflict of commitment and/or of interest between their official activities and any other obligation. Such conflicts may interfere with the individual’s ability to meet his or her UC obligations, or may create a potential or actual conflict of interest or commitment, or the appearance of the same.
  2. County Director Authority
    The county director has responsibility and authority to designate those activities that, in their opinion as county director, constitute a conflict of interest and/or a conflict of commitment by an adult volunteer. Should the county director deem an adult volunteer to hold a conflict of interest or commitment, the adult volunteer will be contacted in writing and asked to remove him or herself from the conflict of interest or commitment or resign from their adult volunteer position. See Dual_Employee_Volunteer_Status_FAQ.

VIII. CHARGING FOR SERVICES OR INSTRUCTION

Adult volunteers or members cannot charge for services or lessons they provide as a 4-H adult volunteer or junior/teen leader. Project activities must be performed free of any charges. No payment to an adult volunteer or junior/teen leader for 4-H YDP services may be accepted or solicited.

IX. ADULT VOLUNTEER TRAINING

Adult volunteers are expected to perform competently as youth educators and mentors and extenders of youth development materials. They are expected to attend training programs led by 4-H YDP staff or other adult volunteers who may deliver training through: orientation and in-service workshops; video and web-based materials; 4-H publications and newsletters; county, regional, and state adult volunteer forums, conferences, and workshops; or other methodologies identified as appropriate at the local level.

X. INITIAL APPOINTMENT OF AN ADULT VOLUNTEER

  1. Introduction
    The 4-H YDP strives to provide the highest qualified pool of adult volunteers to support California’s 4-H YDP members. In this effort, the 4-H YDP has developed a process for providing adult volunteers with the skills and knowledge required to deliver quality educational and youth development experiences in a safe and caring learning environment.
  2. Appointment Process
    An adult interested in serving as an adult volunteer is eligible for “appointment” by the county director after successfully submitting the 2016-2017 4-H Adult Volunteer Application Form - English and materials, securing background investigation clearance, and satisfactorily completing any other local requirements. These processes are outlined in the Adult_Volunteer-Initial_Appointment_Process_Flow_Chart. See For Staff for more information and template appointment letters.
  3. Appointment Application
    The initial volunteer application includes the following materials:
    1. 2016-2017 4-H Adult Volunteer Application Form - English
    2. 2016-2017 Waiver of Liability - English - pdf
    3. 2016-2017 Adult Volunteer Confidential Self Disclosure Form - English - pdf
    4. 2016-2017 Adult Volunteer Treatment Authorization and Health History Form - English - pdf
    5. 2016-2017 Adult Volunteer Code of Conduct - English - pdf
    6. State of California, Department of Justice (DOJ) Form BC11 8016, Request for Live Scan Service. For additional information see Background_Investigation_and_Fingerprinting_FAQ.
    7. Completion of additional procedures required by county such as interviews with 4-H YDP staff, in-depth reference checks, etc.
  4. Initial Volunteer Appointment Review
    The county director has the responsibility and authority to appoint (or conditionally appoint) adult volunteers after careful review of all the above information and successful DOJ screening clearance. If the individual has an arrest record and/or conviction, the county director should consult the Criminal Records Barrier Offense List and Criminal Records Decision Matrix for Volunteers for instructions on how to proceed.
  5. Confirmation of Initial Appointment
    After reviewing and determining that an appointment should be made, the county director should follow this process in making initial appointments:
    1. The adult volunteer appointment is confirmed with the issuance of:
      1. Official 4-H Appointment Cards (See For Staff) that are signed by the county director and states the term of the appointment, and
      2. Letter outlining the parameters and limitations of the appointment. See For Staff for more information.
    2. Adult volunteer appointments are valid for (and may not exceed) a period of one (1) year, with up to a six month overlap process for re-appointments.
    3. Upon issuance of the appointment card, the adult volunteer is recognized as an agent of UC when in the course and scope of his/her 4-H YDP adult volunteer activities.
    4. Adult volunteer appointments are county-specific (e.g., made to a single California county). Adult volunteers may not be concurrently appointed in two or more California counties.
    5. The adult volunteer appointment letter should indicate limitations to UC general and automobile liability insurance coverage and the requirement of having two volunteers/adults present at all times while conducting 4-H activities and events.
  6. Initial Non-Appointment
    After reviewing and determining that an appointment should not be made the county director should notify the applicant in writing of the non appointment. See For Staff for more information.

XI. REAPPOINTMENT OR NON RENEWAL OF AN ADULT VOLUNTEER

  1. Annual Reappointment Process
    Adult volunteer appointments are reviewed and renewed or denied on an annual basis by the county director in consultation and 4-H YDP staff. Annual reappointment is required for an adult volunteer to remain active in the 4-H YDP, as outlined in the Adult_Volunteer-Reappointment_Process_Flow_Chart.
  2. Annual Re-Application
    Adult volunteers are independently and personally responsible for meeting all administrative requirements necessary to secure reappointment by correctly submitting the 2016-2017 4-H Adult Volunteer Application Form - English re-enrollment materials and meeting other associated requirements. To be eligible for reappointment in their second (or any subsequent) year, adult volunteers must annually submit the 2016-2017 4-H Adult Volunteer Application Form - English that includes:
    1. 2016-2017 4-H Adult Volunteer Application Form - English
    2. 2016-2017 Waiver of Liability - English - pdf
    3. 2016-2017 Adult Volunteer Confidential Self Disclosure Form - English - pdf
    4. 2016-2017 Adult Volunteer Treatment Authorization and Health History Form - English - pdf
    5. 2016-2017 Adult Volunteer Code of Conduct - English - pdf
  3. Review of Re-Appointment
    The county director reviews renewal applications of adult volunteers on the basis of:
    1. Successful review of submitted reappointment materials. Upon receipt of a subsequent arrest notification, the county director should consult the Criminal Records Barrier Offense List and Criminal Records Decision Matrix for Volunteers for instructions on how to proceed.
    2. Adult volunteer’s quality of service and previous performance, specifically including demonstration of a supportive and cooperative relationship with 4-H YDP youth, adult volunteer peers, clientele, other program stakeholders, and 4-H YDP staff, and adherence to the programmatic goals, code of conduct and core values established by the 4-H YDP program.
    3. County UCCE 4-H YDP program needs.
  4. Re-Appointment Confirmation
    After reviewing and determining that a re-appointment should be made the county director should follow this process in making re-appointments:
    1. The adult volunteer appointment is confirmed with the issuance of:
      1. Official 4-H Volunteer Appointment Cards that are signed by the county director and states the term of the appointment, and
      2. A letter outlining the parameters and limitations of the appointment. See For Staff for more information.
    2. Adult volunteer appointments are valid for (and may not exceed) a period of one (1) year, with a six month overlap process for reappointments.
    3. Upon issuance of the re-appointment card, the adult volunteer is recognized as an agent of UC when in the course and scope of his/her 4-H YDP adult volunteer activities.
    4. Adult volunteer re-appointments are county-specific (e.g., made to a single California county). Adult volunteers may not be concurrently appointed in two or more California counties.
    5. The adult volunteer re-appointment letter should indicate limitations to UC general and automobile liability insurance coverage and the requirement of having two volunteers/adults present at all times while conducting 4-H activities and events. See For Staff.
  5. Nonrenewal of an Adult Volunteer
    1. The county director has the authority not to reappoint an adult volunteer after review of the submitted application materials, prior performance, and program needs. Adult volunteers who are not reappointed should be sent a letter indicating that their services are no longer needed.
    2. When reappointment of a volunteer is declined, 4-H YDP staff must submit State of California, Department of Justice (DOJ) Form BC11 8302, No Longer Interested (NLI) Notification within one (1) year. For additional information see Background_Investigation_and_Fingerprinting_FAQ.
  6. Failure to Reapply as an Adult Volunteer (Break in Service)
    1. Adult volunteers who do not annually reapply to continue as an adult volunteer according to the above described requirements will be considered “resigned.” In addition, adult volunteers may independently resign from the 4-H YDP at any time.
    2. When an adult volunteer does not request renewal and/or resigns, 4-H YDP staff must immediately submit State of California, Department of Justice (DOJ) Form BC11 8302, No Longer Interested (NLI) Notification. For additional information see Background_Investigation_and_Fingerprinting_FAQ.

XII. TRANSFER OF APPOINTMENT (OR REAPPOINTMENT)

  1. Adult volunteers who relocate from one California County to another may apply for a transfer of  appointment.
  2. Application Process
    To apply for a transfer of their appointment, the adult volunteer must provide a summary of his/her credentials, including details of training and volunteer service, and a reference from a 4-H YDP staff member of the former county. Transfer of the adult volunteer’s reappointment may be approved based on their previous training and experience, or the 4-H adult volunteer may be required to participate in further training, as per the discretion of the 4-H YDP staff. The outcome of the request for transfer of appointment will be given to the applicant in writing.
  3. Required Background Check
    Background investigation records are not transferable from one California County to another. Accordingly, before a transfer of appointment can be approved, the adult volunteer must receive fingerprint clearance in the new location. Reference State of California, Department of Justice (DOJ) Form BC11 8016, Request for Live Scan Service. For additional information see Background_Investigation_and_Fingerprinting_FAQ.

XIII. SUSPENSION AND /OR TERMINATION OF AN ADULT VOLUNTEER

  1. Introduction
    On occasion an adult volunteer may fail to complete required training, act in a manner detrimental to the best interests of the 4-H YDP, or be in violation of the 4-H Code of Conduct, UC policies or 4-H YDP core values. In these situations, or when the services of an adult volunteer are no longer needed, the adult volunteer may be excused by the county director. See Adult_Volunteer-Suspension_Dismissal_of_Appointment_of_Adult_Volunteer_Flow_Chart.
  2. County Director Authority
    The county director has responsibility and authority to terminate the services of adult volunteers based upon their professional judgment and the recommendation of 4-H YDP staff. The county director may execute such a termination at any time. In the event of a decision to terminate the services of an adult volunteer, the county director will advise the state 4-H YDP office.
  3. Reasons for Suspension or Termination
    Causes of suspension or termination include but are not limited to:
    1. Failure to demonstrate a supportive and cooperative relationship with 4-H youth, adult volunteer peers, clientele, other program stakeholders, and/or 4-H YDP staff.
    2. Failure to adhere to the programmatic goals established by the 4-H YD program.
    3. Violation of the 4-H 2016-2017 Adult Volunteer Code of Conduct - English - pdf.
    4. Performance of an act that violates UC policy and/or State or Federal law. If applicable, see Criminal Records Barrier Offense List and Criminal Records Decision Matrix for Volunteers.
    5. Failure to meet the responsibilities of UCCE 4-H YDP adult volunteer service.
    6. Falsification of information provided in the adult appointment process.
    7. Failure to complete required training.
  4. Suspension/Termination Procedures - Formal Review Process
    1. The county director will advise selected relevant personnel and appropriate individuals of the upcoming formal review, but will otherwise keep this information confidential to the greatest extent possible.
    2. Relevant personnel may include (but are not limited to), the state 4-H YDP director, the 4-H YDP staff, and others as needed to review the adult volunteer appointment.
    3. At the discretion of the county director, the adult volunteer may be suspended from 4-H YDP participation in part or in full during the period of formal review. The county director may specify parameters of the suspension as they deem appropriate (partial suspension). See For Staff for more information.
    4. The county director will review the adult volunteer appointment, as well as any relevant documentation. If applicable, see Criminal Records Barrier Offense List and Criminal Records Decision Matrix for Volunteers.
    5. At their discretion, the county director may elect to include the adult volunteer at this or any other stage of the process.
    6. The county director will issue written notification to the adult volunteer of the review of their appointment. Such notification will include:
      1. Citations of specific concerns and/or policy infractions.
      2. Statement of immediate and/or possible outcomes, including possible termination as an adult volunteer.
      3. If applicable, notice of corrective action that could be taken by the adult volunteer to correct the problem.
      4. If applicable, send a notice that the adult volunteer shall be given thirty (30) days to correct the infraction.
    7. The state 4-H YDP office, and appropriate ANR personnel shall be consulted in the process and copied on the letter.
    8. All such letters shall be sent via a verifiable delivery method (e.g., United States Postal Service Delivery Confirmation, Federal Express, etc.).
    9. If after the thirty (30) day period, the county director determines that the adult volunteer’s actions were unsatisfactory and failed to remedy the situation, and/or if the problem reoccurs anytime thereafter, the county director may give the adult volunteer written notification that the appointment is terminated. Further due process procedures do not apply in such instances, and may not be accessed by the adult volunteer. See For Staff for more information.
  5. Exception to Formal Review Process
    1. On an exception basis, the county director has discretion to waive the review process and terminate the adult volunteer immediately. Examples of situations in which the review process might be waived would include extreme disruption to the 4-H YD program, a potential threat to public safety, a notice that the adult volunteer is convicted of a barrier offense, and/or other conditions that cannot be remedied with corrective action.
    2. In such a situation, the county director will issue to the adult volunteer written notice of immediate termination without resort to the review process. Due process procedures will not apply in such instances, and may not be accessed by the adult volunteer. See For Staff for more information.
  6. Recourse
    The decision of the county director is final and cannot be appealed, except in cases when an adult volunteer feels that his/her termination was made on an improper basis (e.g., civil rights discrimination or in retaliation of making a sexual harassment or civil rights complaint). See Chapter 3. He or she has recourse through the 4-H YDP complaint processes within ANR. Inquiries regarding UC’s nondiscrimination policies may be directed to the Affirmative Action Director, University of California, Agriculture and Natural Resources, DANR Bldg., UC Davis, 1 Shields Avenue, Davis, CA 95616.

XIV. 4-H YDP COMPLAINTS

  1. Introduction
    The 4-H YDP staff are available to help members, adult volunteers, and parents address conflicts and create solutions to problems, and for consultation and interpretation of policy and procedures.
  2. Resolution Levels
    1. Whenever possible, the conflict or issues should be attempted to be resolved at the level where the conflict occurs e.g. project level, club level, event level, or county level.
    2. When conflicts cannot be satisfactorily resolved at the initiating level, the conflict should be taken to the next level for additional review.
    3. On some occasions a conflict may need to be taken to the county level for assistance or resolution. In those cases the individual or the parties should complete a Complaint-County_4-H_Complaint_Form and submit to the county 4-H YDP staff for review and possible submission to the County _VMO_Complaint_Review_Board_Procedure. See Complaint-County_Complaint_Process.
  3. Complaint Process
    1. All relevant information will be reviewed by the 4-H YDP staff. This may include an inquiry into the incident and identification of any potential health and safety concerns, violations of member or adult volunteer codes of conduct or violations of UC/4-H YDP policy. See Complaint-County_4-H_Complaint_Form.
    2. Depending upon the nature of the complaint, the 4-H YDP staff may refer the complaint and all accompanying materials to a County _VMO_Complaint_Review_Board_Procedure or to the county director. In either case, the complaint will be reviewed and evaluated using such tools as appropriate:
      1. 2016-2017 Adult Volunteer Code of Conduct - English - pdf, 2016-2017 Member Code of Conduct - English - pdf and/or 2016-2017 Parent-Guardian-Adult Participant Code of Conduct - English - pdf.
      2. 4-H Core Values, 4-H Guiding Principles, and 4-H Program Criteria.
      3. University of California Cooperative Extension 4-H YDP policies, county 4-H YDP policies, and unit or council constitution, bylaws and rules.
      4. Interview or meeting with the identified parties.
      5. Requesting additional support material.
    3. Taking into consideration the severity of the complaint and any past incidents, the following actions/steps may be taken:
      1. A letter will be sent to all identified parties detailing the findings of the inquiry, and as appropriate:
        1. Identify the specific course of action to ensure the situation does not continue and identify specific expectations for continued participation in the 4-H YDP program and consequences if the changes in behavior are not sustained.
        2. Place limitations or restrictions on future participation or program involvement.
    4. Should the review find that infraction is so severe as to cause the suspension or removal of an adult volunteer from the program, the 4-H YDP staff and county director should follow the processes outlined under Suspension or Removal of a 4-H Volunteer in this chapter.

XV. COMPLAINTS REGARDING STATEWIDE 4-H YDP POLICIES OR PROCEDURES

Written complaints regarding a 4-H YDP statewide policy or procedure should be sent to the State 4-H YDP director. If policy modifications are indicated, the issue will be forwarded to the Advisory Committees. The 4-H YDP Policy Advisory Committee will review and make a recommendation to the director. The director's decision on the issue will be final.


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