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ISODIS 22319 circulated for ballot

ISO/DIS 22319 Security and resilience – Guidelines for planning the involvement of spontaneous volunteers is now available as a Draft International Standard (DIS) for public review and comment.

When disasters strike, citizens will try to help in any way they can. Spontaneous volunteers (SVs) are people who offer their help following an emergency or crisis. They may not have been part of a volunteer organization before the incident, or may not have training or experience as a volunteer. While they can provide many benefits, they can also pose challenges for organizations managing the emergency. It is important that organizations plan for the participation of spontaneous volunteers.

ISO/TC 292’s Working Group 5 on Community Resilience  has developed the draft standard based on research and experience gained from emergency situations across the globe, including: floods in the United Kingdom and Germany, ice storms in Canada, bushfires in Australia and hurricanes in US, to name just a few. The WG includes representatives from over 20 countries and is led by covenor, Duncan Shaw of Manchester University, UK.

Key features of ISO 22319

When published, this standard is intended to provide guidelines for the involvement of SVs in incident response and recovery. It will help organizations that want to establish a plan to consider whether, how and when SVs can provide relief. It is applicable to all types and sizes of organizations that are involved in the planning for and management of SVs, such as local, regional, and national governments; statutory bodies; international and non-governmental organizations; businesses; and public and community groups.

ISO 22319 provides detailed guidance information on the steps to take to achieve an effective management plan. Some of the topics covered include:

  • Understanding spontaneous volunteers and they benefits and challenges they bring;

  • Fundamentals of volunteer management;

  • Specific risks associated with managing spontaneous volunteers;

  • Key planning and implementation guidelines;

  • Communication strategies and public messaging; and

  • Assessing the impact of spontaneous volunteers and their engagement in longer term recovery. 

What can you do?

The draft standard is available for review and comment until July 7, 2016. It has been submitted to ISO member countries for voting.  You can help to shape the final published standard by submitting your comments to your member body. Your comments will be forwarded to the mirror committee responsible for developing your national position and voting on the draft standard.