Here are some answers to frequent questions we get about the processing of getting involved with SOY.
What if I know a youth (or youths) in the program when I start volunteering?
SOY discourages interpersonal relationships between adult volunteers and youth involved with SOY outside of our programs and activities. In the case of a pre-existing (non-sexual/romantic) relationship/friendship, we encourage volunteers not to treat any youth differently than the others while involved with the program. This is also applicable in the case of a previous sexual/romantic relationship between a youth involved with SOY and a potential adult volunteer. SOY understands that relationships within our communities can be complicated and we therefore strongly encourage individuals with questions or concerns to contact a SOY staff member to schedule a time to meet for a conversation.
What happens if I ‘click’ particularly well with an individual youth?
With the exception of the Community Mentoring program, SOY volunteers are expected to spend time with more than one youth throughout the course of the event/day/program. Part of a volunteer’s role is to be inclusive of all youth and volunteers here at SOY.
Can I offer a youth (or youths) a lift home in my car?
No. SOY supports youth with the cost of transportation to and from our programmed activities. It is outside the bounds of the volunteer role, unless pre-arranged with staff for programming purposes.
Can I invite a youth (or youths) back to my place for coffee?
No. With the sole exception of the SOY Community Mentoring Program, this is out of the bounds of the volunteer role.
What if a youth asks for my phone number or email?
In keeping with SOY policy relating to professional boundaries, let the youth know that you cannot give out your personal contact info.
What happens if I meet one of the youth from the event/program in a bar some time later on and we get on really well?
We strongly discourage volunteers from pursuing any kind of ongoing relationship with a youth that they met through a SOY activity or event.
If I have access to activities, jobs etc. how can I let a youth know?
SOY staff will happily pass information on to youth. Just give us a call or send an e-mail.