Volunteer Support – Business
Kent Fire and Rescue Service (KFRS) volunteers give their time, skills and knowledge to help create a safer future for Kent and Medway. Together we are all one team and, with our volunteers acting as our ambassadors, we’re helping to make a difference to people’s lives – whoever they are. If you enjoy contributing, being there for other people and want to be part of something that matters, consider volunteering with KFRS.
Purpose of Role
Volunteers will provide valuable support for the Building Safety team following inspections at fire-related incidents. Other areas of activity will include supporting the team in providing building safety engagement and meeting customers at community events and partnership functions.
Context of Role
There are over 65,000 businesses within Kent and Medway, the majority of which are small and medium enterprises. In addition to these, there are other types of buildings with common areas - such as purpose-built flats – that also come under the FSO.
Building Safety help businesses, their employees and customers to stay safe. Part of their role is to enforce the Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005 known as the Fire Safety Order (FSO). This includes ensuring that people who have control over premises (excluding individual private homes) take all reasonable steps to reduce the risk of fire and make sure people can escape if there were a fire.
Building Safety visits business premises for a variety of reasons, including carrying out an inspection after a fire-related incident. Additionally, Building Safety can offer advice on how to take precautions to minimise the risk of fire, and what businesses need to do to make sure they meet the legal requirements
- Volunteers will support Building Safety following a fire-related incident by visiting the location within the first few days following the fire to reassure and provide information to businesses in the local area. They will also signpost the business owners to additional documentation and advice as suggested by the team
- Volunteers will engage with selected businesses not currently planned to be visited by Building Safety, as part of the Risk-based Inspection Programme, to provide them with information on their responsibilities in relation to the Fire Safety Order, what the common failures are and how to access guidance.
- To support Building Safety with their business safety campaigns and national project work such as Fire Safety Weeks and seasonal events. This will involve visiting businesses and/or workplaces providing relevant safety messages and information to keep their businesses, employees and customers safe
- Researching and attending business owners/sector events to help and support our customers, provide key safety messages and signpost to KFRS resources
Skills and Qualities Sought
- We need reliable, trustworthy people who are able to behave in a professional manner
- Enjoy working as part of a team and follow our Volunteer code of Ethical Conduct
- Have the ability and willingness to volunteer within set processes and procedures
- You will need to be a good communicator and enjoy engaging with business owners, members of the public, KFRS and other partner organisations
- Have good verbal, numeracy and general computer skills
- Have an interest and understanding of basic health and safety regulations
- The ability to confidently engage business owners in a friendly manner, providing information in line with guidance from the Building Safety Team
- Be willing and prepared to seek advice where necessary to ensure that all information you provide to our customers is accurate. .
Other non-specialist opportunities to volunteer may be offered alongside this role for example:
- supporting Service events such as Fire Station open days when you’ll have the opportunity to engage with the public and help them to stay safe
- supporting KFRS and partner events including welcoming attendees
- casualty role playing at KFRS training exercises
You are not however under any obligation to accept these additional roles.
Support and Training
We welcome and encourage our volunteers, so everyone feels part of the wider team. We will provide:
- A full induction and introduction to KFRS
- Training to enable you to undertake this role
- Regular feedback and support
- A volunteer handbook to explain all of our volunteer
A trial period of three months in this role will begin on completion of training and induction.
A review meeting will take place at the end of this time to discuss suitability of the role and volunteering at KFRS or to determine an alternative option.
KFRS and partner premises throughout Kent and Medway. Volunteers are able to undertake this role within an area near to where you live, work or study.
We ask our volunteers to commit to supporting us for a minimum of 8 hours per month, however and there may be opportunities to do more where possible.
You will be reimbursed for agreed travel and out of pocket expenses.