Volunteering and Covid-19
Updated 24th June 2020
Volunteering in parks to carry out litterpicks, watering of trees, gardening type tasks or nature conservation work is now permitted in socially distanced groups of up to 6 people or by individuals or a maximum of two people from different households (or support bubbles).
Anyone from separate households or support bubbles must maintain 2m social distancing.
For working in groups, you must follow the protocols and risk assessments below (links to BCC website). This is in addition to the usual Health & Safety procedures. There is a separate protocol for individuals or two people working together.
Group leaders must have completed Bristol Parks Health & Safety training. You will need to submit updated Health & Safety Plans and risk assessments and get them approved before any group activities take place.
At present group volunteering under the Council’s insurance is only permitted for volunteers up to the age of 70 .
This guidance has been put together by Bristol Parks to support those who are able and wish to volunteer or run sessions. It does not imply any expectation for groups to do so.
To control numbers and ensure everyone’s safety sessions will need to have a system of prebooking; please do not publicly advertise the dates and times of sessions in advance.
Note the changes that take effect from 4th July do not change the guidance on group sizes being limited to SIX.
Health and Safety Training
Note training is currently suspended due to Covid-19
Many Park Group members want to improve their park by carrying out tasks such as adding planting schemes or cutting back bramble or scrub to improve sites for wildlife.
Bristol Parks encourages these efforts but needs to ensure that they are carried out safely both for those taking part and for other park users. Bristol Parks will provide training to groups and once this has been undertaken volunteers carrying out agreed tasks will be covered by Bristol City Council’s insurance.
The training means that volunteers leading guided walks have insurance cover.
Training is for 5 to 8 people on each course and Bristol Parks will put on courses as required (including for specific groups in their own areas). If you would like to attend a course please use the link at the top of this page.
The Health & Safety Pack and forms that you will use once you have add your training can be downloaded from the Council’s website here.
Group Pledge & Charter
Bristol City Council Parks Service recognises the positive value of ‘Park Groups’ to our parks and their users. This value is at its greatest when both parties are committed to a constructive, cooperative working relationship.
This pledge is to capture the positive intention of both parties and help ensure the management and development of parks & green spaces is supported by both parties in order to do the best for the local community. It is not intended as a legal document or contract.
Groups may wish to sign the ‘Pledge’ and may find it useful in that it gives a degree of official status and sets out what both they and Bristol parks Service can expect. There is no requirement for groups to sign.
Alongside the pledge there is a ‘Bristol Parks Volunteering Charter’ that sets out how the Parks Service works with volunteers.