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Volunteer Code of Conduct

BeWelcome is a volunteer-run website. Nobody is being paid for their work, and our volunteers spend part (or all) of their spare time running this community. Whether it is programming, translating, organizing meetings, discussing the features and future of BeWelcome on the forum or helping other members, ... they are all volunteers!

To keep things civilized, polite and constructive we have a "Volunteer Code of Conduct", guidelines for volunteers on how to interact both with each other and with our members. In this way we know what to expect (or not) from our volunteers. These are not rules or reasons to kick anyone out of our community, but constructive words that can help people to get to a solution. If members have an issue with one of our volunteers, they can contact the respective team coordinators or the BoD.

"Volunteer Code of Conduct"

Be Helpful

Help others in learning more about BeWelcome. If you see a volunteer call for help, help out. Help BeWelcome and spread the word.

Be Respectful

The BeWelcome volunteers should treat each other and our members with respect. Everyone can make a valuable contribution to BeWelcome. We may not always agree, but disagreement is no excuse for poor behaviour and poor manners. We might all experience some frustration now and then, but that should not result in personal attacks. Sometimes it helps to first cool down before addressing the matter again.

Be Understanding

Show empathy. We all have different cultural backgrounds, personal opinions and technological skills. Try to approach the issue from their angle. Take the time to listen and understand the emotional impact of your actions. Even if you cannot help out, try to show you care.

Be Honest

If you don't know the answer, be honest about it and contact somebody who can address the issue. If you make a mistake, apologize and do your best to rectify it.

Be Pragmatic

BeWelcome is a pragmatic community. We are open to suggestions and welcome solutions regardless of their origin. When in doubt support a solution which helps getting things done. Use the tools and methods which are most effective.

Be Cooperative

Working together is probably one of the key elements in BeWelcome. Everybody has their own set of talents, and together we can help this community grow and prosper. Working together not only improves the quality of the service we offer our members, but reduces also the time and resources necessary to accomplish our goals. Documenting our work and keeping others informed through the forum, wiki pages and blog posts can facilitate this.

Be Transparent

Whenever possible, use open channels to communicate. Try to explain which actions you will take and give the other volunteers a chance to express their views within a certain deadline. Team processes should be transparent and available to the public.

Be Discrete

As a volunteer you may have access to personal information, passwords, site access, etc. This should be treated with the highest level of discretion. Keep site access details secure at all times and information obtained on private forums, in e-mails or in other mediums confidential, even after discontinuing your volunteering.