Volunteer involvement in the probation services

Volunteer involvement in the probation services

(full text only available in Dutch)


At the moment, the three Dutch probation organisations are involving volunteers only in a limited number of services (Circles of Support and accountability, volunteer visit programm for Dutch prisoners in foreign countries, and some projects that involve a small number of volunteers in befriending programmes). In the course of a government funded innovation programme, also a number of pilot projects have recently been set up by probation services. However, more knowledge on volunteer management in probation services is needed, to develop an overarching policy that includes goals, strategies for the organisation of volunteer involvement , and models for type of volunteer tasks and for the cooperation between volunteers and paid staff. In a number of foreign countries probation services have a long standing tradiotn and expertise in volunteer engagement and management, which could provide valuable examples for the Dutch probation services. This study has explored examples in Ireland, England, Sweden, Austria and Japan. Three questions guided the research:

  1. How is volunteer involvement in the probation services organised; what are conditions that need to be in place, what are their tasks, and how does the work of the volunteers relate to the tasks of paid staff?
  2. What are effective mechanismes of volunteer management, including recruitment and assessemnt, training and retention, cooperation with paid staff, and what is the outcome of volunteer engagement?
  3. Are the examples of the organisation of volunteer engagement and of volunteer management fit for implementation in the Dutch context?

Publication data

Höing, M., Heemskerk, I.
Höing & Heemskerk, WODC
Place of publication:
Höing & Heemskerk
Year of publication:

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