A close-up of a person's hand from below as they reach down to grab another person's hand. Having a group of untrained, unscreened volunteers can open an organization to a host of risks, including the possibility of physical injuries, property damage or criminal activity. (Credit: bignai/Adobe Stock)

Volunteering can be rewarding for both the volunteers themselves and the organization they’re helping, but utilizing non-professional helpers comes with a unique set of risks. Though some volunteers are put through checks and training ahead of performing their duties, a recent survey from Church Mutual Insurance Company showed these preparations aren’t happening as often as you might expect.

According to the survey report, 52% of respondents who regularly or frequently attend organizations that use volunteers said they expect those organizations to perform criminal background checks on them. However, only 33% of volunteers surveyed said they actually had undergone a background check prior to being accepted to their position, and only 16% had been checked against the National Sex Offender Public Registry.

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Brittney Meredith-Miller

Brittney Meredith-Miller is assistant editor of PropertyCasualty360.com. She can be reached at [email protected]

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