BiCon is run entirely by volunteers. It literally would not be possible without them. And by 'them' we mean 'us' and 'you'.

So why should I volunteer at BiCon?

Volunteering for things at BiCon is one of the best ways of meeting new people and giving back to BiCon and the community.

Volunteering won't take up all of your time and doesn't always need you to have specialist skills like listening-support and first-aid.

Go to the sessions webpage for information about volunteering to run a session at BiCon.

Go to the entertainments webpage for information about volunteering at BiCon entertainments.

Volunteering at BiCon also falls into the following categories:

  • Registration & info desks
  • Gophering (running messages, lifting and carrying stuff)
  • Listening and support team
  • First aid
  • and being willing to help out with bits and pieces during BiCon when someone makes a general request for volunteers.

Registration desk

Tasks include:

  • Sitting behind the desk for one or more shifts of between 1 and 2 hours
  • Handing out accommodation keys
  • Handing out BiCon passes
  • Taking on-site registration-only bookings and payments, handing out info packs
  • Contacting the on-duty BiCon organiser in the event of complex queries or any problems

Info desk

Tasks include:

  • Sitting behind the desk for one or more shifts of between 1 and 2 hours
  • Welcoming attenders, directing them to their accommodation and handing out info packs
  • Directing checked-in attenders to the badge-making and social areas of BiCon
  • Answering or writing down (for the organisers) queries about BiCon
  • Contacting counsellors, first-aiders or a gopher upon request
  • Contacting the on-duty BiCon organiser in the event of complex queries or any problems
  • Answering the BiCon phone.

Desk duties are not physically strenuous and during quieter times should not be too tiring. The desks will be staffed by experienced volunteers and BiCon team members during anticipated busy-registration periods. Instructions will be provided in writing and tasks will be clearly explained to you when you start your shifts.

The volunteer coordinator will contact you nearer BiCon to find out your likely availability for desk duty and any tasks you would rather not or cannot do.

For example:

  • A deaf or hard of hearing volunteer can be put on shifts with someone else who can answer the mobile phone
  • A volunteer who doesn't like handling money or numbers can be placed on the info desk or a shift with someone else handling the bookings.

When the volunteer coordinator contacts you about your volunteering duties, please let them know of any limitations you may have, so they can timetable your shifts with someone else who can carry out those duties alongside you. We do not want anyone to feel that it is not possible for them to contribute to BiCon in some way.

Gopher duty

Tasks include:

  • Helping to set up the BiCon spaces at the beginning of BiCon and before entertainments or sessions
  • Helping to take-down BiCon stuff at the end of activities, events or the end of BiCon itself
  • Assisting BiCon attenders with carrying luggage to their accommodation
  • Moving furniture around the conference centre between events.

BiCon gophering is the one volunteering task which needs physically able-bodied individuals. BiCon won't be asking you to carry excessive amounts, mostly just shared carrying of larger pieces of furniture, chairs and possibly assisting with decorating the venue for evening entertainments.

Some BiCon attenders and organisers have physical disabilities which limit their ability to do physical activities such as moving furniture or carrying their luggage. BiCon will be relying on gopher volunteers to assist people with this upon request.

Listening and Support Team

Volunteers for Listening and Support will need to provide proof of counselling qualifications or experience in listening services such as Nightline.

An experienced BiCon support person will be coordinating the listening and support service to ensure that volunteers still get to have fun at BiCon and that attenders know exactly what the volunteers can provide. BiCon Listening and Support is most like a listening service, rather than directive or advice services. It is not a replacement for professional mental health support.

The BiCon Listening and Support coordinator will provide more information soon and contact volunteers nearer to BiCon. If you have any questions about Listening and Support please email email address removed.

First aid service

First aid volunteers will need to be able to produce a valid and current first aid certification or evidence of employment in an appropriate medical profession.

BiCon first aiders will mostly be needed for minor injuries and to provide limited reassurance to any attenders having health difficulties at BiCon. The first aid service will not be a replacement for professional medical treatment for acute or longer term medical conditions.

Attenders who have volunteered first aid services will be contacted nearer BiCon.

Other tasks

Often during BiCon there are tasks which can be quite tedious and lengthy when only one or two people do them, and very quick and easy if there are many people. During BiCon, the organisers and others will not be shy about standing up and making a general request for assistance. If you can assist, please do respond to these requests, the more the merrier!

Comments are closed.