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Call for Volunteers

Last Updated on 11th December 2020

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We are calling for volunteers to support a variety of roles and responsibilities which will help us make WordFest Live 2021 the best virtual Festival of WordPress it can be. 

Why does a virtual event need volunteers? That’s a great question. Although the event is virtual and the need for support isn’t quite at the same level as it would be for a physical in-person event, there are still plenty of roles to fill.  

Why volunteers and not paid team members? Another great question; WordFest Live 2021 is being delivered by Big Orange Heart, a registered charity that relies on the generosity of people donating their time. All funds raised through sponsorship and donations through the event are being dedicated to the further delivery of free well-being and mental health support for the remote working community. 

We hope you can join us in January to be part of the WordFest Live 2021 team.

Interested in being a WordFest Live 2021 Volunteer? 

We’ve detailed some of the roles and responsibilities below to help guide you and enable us to deliver a safe, friendly and welcoming event for our community.  Complete the Volunteer Registration Form to register your interest in supporting WordFest Live 2021.

Volunteer Roles at WordFest Live 2021 

  • Emcees – as an Emcee, you’ll be spending time on screen through the event, introducing sessions, running Q&A sessions and generally having fun with the team. You’ll need to be confident you can fill a void if we have the odd technical issue.  
  • Green Room Monitors – our speakers will be delivering their sessions in a variety of formats. Some may not have featured across a virtual event yet, so our Green Room is a space to connect with the team and ensure they’re all set and ready to go before they’re live.  
  • Community Moderators – our mission is to enable freedom of movement within a virtual event – but we have to be prepared for all eventualities. So we need people who are happy to move about over the course of the event and ensure there are no violations of our Code of Conduct. You’ll also be a point of call should people want to report any issues. 
  • Communications – the Communications team sits in the middle of it all, ensuring that the right messages are hitting the right people. There will be a cross-over between marketing, sponsor liaison and technical support, ensuring we’re highlighting the right information, at the right time. 
  • Operations – as we shift online with events, behind the scenes, everything is running on a range of technologies that all need to be kept ticking over. So operations volunteers will help keep the event running and our servers ticking over.  We are looking for:
    • People comfortable who are comfortable with the command line, and have experience managing servers and systems. 
    • If things do go wrong, you will be helping to identify and fix issues, so being happy to dive into log files and troubleshoot.
    • We use Nginx/PHP-FPM and MySQL for the site, and a basic understanding of this stack will be needed.
    • We have more interesting technology for running the chat aspects; specifically, most of it is powered by Jitsi Meet, it’s not a requirement but if you have prior experience with Jitsi we really could do with your help.
  • A/V Producers – To ensure the visuals and sound as high quality as possible for the attendees, we need volunteers that will manage each live “show”. The role includes adding and removing Emcee and speakers, enabling any slides to appear and playing videos. This is a ‘behind-the-scenes’ role and as such will not require you to be on camera. Experience with Streamyard, Restream, OBS or other live streaming services and simple video editing a real bonus. The A/V Producers will need to be confident in making quick decisions through a live event. We will be using a talkback system, for example, Discord to communicate, so you will need to be wearing headphones throughout and the preference is you are hard-wired, not wifi as connectivity is critical for continuity.

The event itself is a full 24-hour period but don’t worry; there are zero expectations that you’ll be across all of it. In fact, we’ll be ensuring that this doesn’t happen for your own well-being. The event will be split across four distinct Regions: Oceania, Asia, EMEA and the Americas.  We’ll spend 6 hours in each region.  So we are asking for a minimum commitment of one region per volunteer. 

Volunteers’ Benefits 

The greatest thing you’ll walk away with is a massive sense of achievement in being part of the first WordFest Live, but we won’t leave it at that. You’ll feature across the team page, be given a lovely virtual ‘volunteer’ badge in your profile, to highlight your support. 

And we’ll also provide you with a very limited special edition gift from the Big Orange Heart team.  

How Do I Volunteer? 

Good question! I shall now hand you over to our wonderful Volunteer Lead – Barbara Saul – who will be able to give you all the details you need. 

Hello!  I’ve joined the team to help as the volunteer lead. Some of you will remember me for this very role at WordCamp London over a few years, and it was this experience that showed me what an amazing community we are a part of and to which I enjoy committing myself to via Big Orange Heart these days. 

I’ll be looking after you, as a volunteer; to find answers to anything you might want to know or be unsure about, holding hands where helpful and ensuring that the volunteer team is happy so that WordFest Live 2021 is the success we know it will be. As with all WordPress events, it’s the volunteers that help make the magic happen. Join us to make this a very special celebration of all things WordPress.

Register Your Details

Our public Call for Volunteers has now closed.

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