Volunteer Protocols

Becoming a volunteer for The Dragonfly Foundation means that you agree to follow our official procedures, etiquette, and conventions.

When Interacting with Our Dragonfly Community, Online, In-Person at Dragonfly Events, or On Behalf of Dragonfly

  • Represent the organization professionally and to the best of your ability.
  • Be a goodwill ambassador for the organization. Educate people about Dragonfly. If you (and our Dragonfly families) aren’t enthusiastic about supporting our mission and our organization, why should anyone else be?
  • Be our champion with friends, family, and associates. Don’t forget to share our social media posts and events!
  • Follow our event-specific dress codes or wear our Dragonfly volunteer t-shirt (or another Dragonfly garment). This will help identify you as a Dragonfly representative who can provide assistance or information.
  • DO NOT make public statements, commitments or promises on behalf of the organization without written permission from Christine Neitzke and/or Ria Davidson. All volunteers must have written approval from Dragonfly before signing any contracts or making “good faith” decisions or commitments.
  • Always leave an event space in the same condition (or better) than when we/you arrived. We want to be sure that everyone feels good about Dragonfly, including our sponsors and supporters.
  • Help us better understand how we can meet the needs or address the concerns of our Dragonfly families, supporters, volunteers, etc. Report an issue, concern, or comment that could impact our reputation, fundraising event or patient/family experience.
  • Treat everyone with respect, kindness, and compassion.
  • Understand that protecting our Dragonflies, sustaining our mission, improving the organization’s health and protecting the reputation and brand of Dragonfly are paramount to personal egos, goals or agendas. While volunteers often provide recommendations based on personal experience and expertise, it is important that you acknowledge and abide by all final decisions made by Dragonfly co-founders and/or its Board because of their understanding of the goals, initiatives and workings of the entire organization.
  • Let us know if, for any reason, you are unable to complete your assignment or commitment.
  • Keep all information confidential.

When Interacting with Dragonfly Patients and Families:

  • Get your Flu shot (November-April)
  • DO NOT volunteer to attend patient/family events or visit the hospital if you or your family has been ill. Many of our patients have compromised immune systems; we can’t risk making them sicker than they already are. Please let us know if you are concerned about your health status.
  • DO NOT ask about the patient’s diagnosis, current health status or prognosis. These are personal questions that should never be asked. It is not important for Dragonfly volunteers to know this information – it is only important that we provide families with comfortable experiences and smiles while they are Dragonflies.
  • DO NOT ask about the patient’s treatment plan, suggest options or advise about medical or psychological treatment, holistic care alternatives or diet plans. These types of discussions are very disturbing to our families. The very last thing we want to do is upset our families. Please remember that, you are relating to people who have raw, open emotional wounds. They are highly emotional and mentally drained. Do not under any circumstances provide counsel, recommendations, advice or personal experiences.
  • DO NOT ask the age or sex of a patient. The treatments our Dragonflies undergo can drastically alter their appearance. Mistaking the age or sex of a patient can be hurtful, uncomfortable and/or emotionally devastating.
  • DO NOT presume to understand the emotional, physical, psychological and financial struggles and challenges of our patients and families. While you may have had experience with cancer or a blood disease, your experience is not the same nor is it helpful to compare/contrast experiences. There is no winner.
  • DO NOT ask for contact information or seek out personal contact/relationships with our Dragonflies or their families outside of TDF events. Do not send friend requests through Facebook or Twitter. Boundaries are important, for both you and our families.
  • DO NOT provide support to our patients and families unless it is through Dragonfly. While well intentioned, our experience has been that families can become very dependent upon your assistance and it is hard to back away, whether you are the volunteer or the family.
  • DO NOT go anywhere with a child unless the parents are present.
  • DO NOT ask to take personal photos with our families and/or post photos on social media unless you receive approval in advance FROM Dragonfly. Please keep in mind that while Dragonfly often takes pictures of our kids/families, we know the circumstances of each family. Without having this knowledge, you may inadvertently ask a family for a photo who just found out their child is terminal or in crisis. As you might imagine, it would be uncomfortable for families to say “no” or to have to “smile” for a photo during the most trying time of their lives.