Volunteer Policy and Positions

Markham Group of Artists Volunteer Policy - Spring 2023

MGA is non-profit, community organisation run by an elected group of members in service of its

broader membership - there are no paid positions on the leadership team. An organisation like

this can only be successful with many voices and hands, and volunteers are the heartbeat of

our group.

Our key MGA values also underpin our volunteer involvement as we:

● conduct ourselves with the highest level of integrity and fairness;

● ensure fair and equitable access to MGA art shows, sales, events, and projects; and

● engage respectfully with artists of all abilities, ethnicities, backgrounds and beliefs.


What kinds of volunteer tasks does MGA offer?

MGA offers an array of workshops and lectures, and stages a variety of shows in the community

on an annual basis. In support of building an increasingly diverse membership, MGA also

explores other ways of engaging with the public (e.g., via digital platforms and social media). As

MGA seeks to increase exposure and reach within the community, our expanding programming

requires the help of unpaid volunteers, and opportunities are plentiful for members to lend a


Many examples of volunteer tasks and responsibilities include smaller, one-off tasks - but don’t

let these fool you...while these tasks take small amounts of time, they are incredibly important in

our overall success. We love the notion that “many hands make light work”. Examples include:

● Calling to arrange catering for an event

● Reaching out to an artist to determine interest in holding a workshop

● Talking to a local store owner/proprietor/restauranteur to gauge interest in showing our

member art

● Helping set up at a members’ meeting/workshop/event (no lifting)

● Door greeter at a members’ meeting/event

● Sitting for a 3-hour time slot at an in-person gallery show

● Posting something on your social media account

How does MGA find its volunteers?

MGA invites members to volunteer throughout the year through monthly newsletters and

through specific “call for volunteer” emails. MGA also reaches out into the local community as

needed (e.g., as in the case of high school students). MGA accepts volunteers from ages 16+

and will only assign volunteers to tasks based on the volunteer’s comfort level and abilities.

Volunteers can expect:

● A clear and realistic description of the duties and task(s) and expected timelines for



● A member of the MGA team to provide training for the duties and tasks

● A named, MGA contact person who can answer any questions, address concerns,

and/or problem-solve during the completion of the task(s)

● To be consulted in any decision which affects them;

● To be compensated for any out-of-pocket expenses incurred upon submission of receipts

as long as these expenses have been pre-approved by their MGA contact person. The

MGA contact will provide clear guidelines for expense reimbursement.

● To be adequately covered by MGA insurance while carrying out the agreed duties


What MGA will expect of its volunteers:

● To undertake volunteer work at agreed times;

● To provide feedback to the MGA contact about their volunteering experience (MGA is

always open and looking for improvements to the way it operates);

● To inform MGA contact ASAP if unable to fulfil tasks;

● To give some notice to MGA contact if unable to continue volunteering (applicable for

duties that extend over time); and

● To act in alignment with MGA values.

Volunteers and MGA will be bound by MGA’s Privacy Policy (found on the MGA website in the

Members’ section).

On the basis of their volunteer work with MGA, volunteers will have the right to request a


This Volunteer Policy will be reviewed for accuracy and relevance every 2 years.

Created March 2023

The President is key in creating and sustaining the vision, mission, and values for the evolution of MGA and in providing leadership in the management, development, and advancement of this not-for-profit group.
Responsibilities include:
Networking with local artist councils, groups, and independent art organizations with the goal of generating new members and opportunities for existing members
Identifying potential funding sources for art projects, exhibitions, juried shows, and other member opportunities
Locating local opportunities for members to market their work
Chairing meetings, but may periodically designate another member of the Executive to assume this duty
Updating the Executive members on activities and opportunities
The responsibilities of the Vice-President consist largely of supporting the President’s efforts in advancing MGA.
Collaborating with the president on creating and sustaining the MGA vision, mission, and values
Assisting in the management, development, and advancement of MGA goals
Creating initiatives that build upon the networking, funding, and marketing opportunities identified by the President
Performing the responsibilities of the President in the President’s absence
Liaising with the executive and the membership
The Secretary will attend Executive meetings and will prepare agendas and minutes for all Executive and General Meetings and will post the minutes to the website. 
The Treasurer manages the finances of our group, both income and expenses:
Receiving, depositing, and recording all cheques and cash
Recording payments against invoices on the website
Issuing cheques and securing a second authorization signature
Maintaining records of all receipts and expenditures
Reporting financial status at each Executive meeting and all General Meetings 
Issuing member refunds as required and updating the invoices appropriately
Managing the accounts receivable
Reconciling the bank statement to the website invoices and credit card processor reports
Creating annual financial statements 
Managing insurance 
Director Roles
The Registrar inducts new members into the group and maintains the member database on the website. Responsibilities of the Registrar include:
Monitoring the registration page for new members and renewals
Registering members who have no Internet access
Assisting members with website log-in as required
Keeping track of renewal and non-renewal of membership
Creating the annual membership list
Sending to new members the welcome letter, membership card, and instructions for uploading images to the inventory
Obtaining the members’ website address and adding to the members’ rosters
Show/Sales Director
The Show/Sales Director is responsible for working with the show team in the scheduling and execution of group shows. The Annual Juried Show historically occurs in May at the McKay Art Centre; non-juried show in the fall occur at an available venue.
Setting dates and securing locations for juried and non-juried shows
Working with the Show Team and Communications Director to decide on show titles, theme, etc.
Finding/hiring an impartial juror for the shows; coordinating with the juror
Organizing shows: set up and tear down schedules, hosting schedules
Working with the Communications Director to create a communications plan for the show: call to artists, advertising collateral, signage, social media messaging, etc.
Programs Director
The Programs Director is responsible for coordinating with the Programs team in the scheduling and execution of programming for MGA. Such programming may include but is not limited to demonstrations, art talks, workshops, and other group activities.
Planning a balanced program for the given season
Contacting artists, securing dates, booking the venues, and negotiating fees
Establishing the member and non-member fees for workshops (dependent on cost of venue + instructor fee) 
Gathering descriptions of presentations from the artists, images of the artists and their work and biographical information for introductions 
Providing event and activities descriptions to the Communications Director for website and social media posting in time to meet deadlines
Monitoring enrollments
Cancelling workshops when enrollments are not sufficient and communicating this to enrollees
Providing the Treasurer with a list costs, including artist and room booking fees
Conducting feedback surveys
Media and Communications Director 
The Communications Director is key in sustaining the MGA community through the sharing of information and for enabling outreach to the Markham community and beyond. The Communications Director coordinates with the Communications Team and the Executive Committee. The Director ensures that the communication of information of interest to members and the arts community at large is done in a timely fashion through approved channels and according to the guidelines provided by the Executive.
Sharing hosting responsibilities for the MGA online community (e.g., ZOOM chats)
Coaching and supervising student volunteers on posting on social media
Creating surveys and sharing the results with the leadership team
Creating communications plans for MGA events: advertising, website updates, social media messaging
Creating advertising copy for larger MGA events: signage, etc.
Communicating information about costs to the Treasurer prior to making expenditures
Coordinating with the Communications Team, consisting of:
Newsletter/Email Coordinator: responsible for creating the monthly Communique newsletter and for sending timely messages to the membership regarding events and other group business
Publicity Coordinator: responsible for publicizing MGA activities to the Markham community and beyond when appropriate; for sending weekly (as required) updates for the Don Hamilton Newsletter; for creating press releases and sending them to publications
Social Media Student Volunteers: responsible for maintaining our social media platforms, posting notices of group events in a timely manner, posting on a daily basis images of artwork in our shows, monitoring the Facebook Forum twice weekly 
Website Manager: responsible for updating content on the website in a timely manner, educating members on how to use the members’ portal, uploading the minutes to the website, communicating with Dave Achtemchuck, the Website Administrator, regarding upgrades, functionality, and other website matters; publishing the descriptions for MGA events on the website in time to meet enrollment deadlines; posting event cancellation notices in a timely manner