*** Updated 3/7/2022***
COVID-19 volunteer missions ended as of November 6, 2021.
COAD continues to build its volunteer database and is still able to assist COAD member agencies sourcing volunteers through our volunteer database. We continue to look for shelter support volunteers for when shelters are activated. Information below.
Volunteers on Call
Simply complete the form using the link provided below to join our Volunteers on Call database. Your contact information will NEVER be shared with third parties. Instead, we’ll reach out as needs arise. You always have the option to opt out if an opportunity doesn’t feel like the right fit.
Please feel free to share this link with others.
Voluntarios Disponibles de COAD
Simplemente complete este formulario para que aparezca en la lista. Su información de contacto NUNCA será compartida. Cuando haya una necesidad, estaremos en contacto con usted. Siempre habrá la opción de optar por no participar si usted se siente incómodo con alguna oportunidad de voluntariado.
Por favor, siéntase libre de compartir este mensaje con otros.
INTERESTED IN VOLUNTEERING IN A SHELTER DURING A DISASTER?
COAD has a new volunteer initiative to recruit and background check volunteers to support vulnerable populations in County shelters during disasters. These volunteer opportunities are not for immediate deployment, but for when COAD is activated to support vulnerable populations in County shelters. COAD needs pre-vetted and trained volunteers who can be readily mobilized to support these populations once requested by the County Shelter Managers. Spontaneous volunteers who come forward after a disaster occurs are not appropriate for these shelter support functions as these volunteers must have a completed a background check. If interested, please sign up via the links provided at the end of the volunteer activity descriptions.
Process for becoming a Shelter Support Volunteer
1. Sign up through the links in this volunteer announcement which can be found at the end of the volunteer descriptions. You can indicate which population you are interested in supporting and whether you would like to be a team leader.
2. Once you sign up, we will be in touch about completing the LIVESCAN background check. The process can be done locally and the cost will be covered by COAD. It usually runs about $20.
3. The LIVESCAN process involves getting electronic finger prints and basic identifying information including driver’s license or other identification.
4. Training will be provided to volunteers, hopefully prior to any activation. Team Leaders will be invited to a training on August 4 to learn shelter protocols.
5. Additional training for other volunteers will occur later in August including orienting them to shelter locations.
6. Shelter Support Team Leaders and Volunteers will be activated during a disaster at the request of the Shelter Manager through COAD’s Volunteers on Call.
DESCRIPTIONS & SKILLS FOR SHELTER SUPPORT VOLUNTEERS:
There are three volunteer opportunities:
1. Volunteer Team Leader
2. Volunteer – Children’s Activity Area
3. Volunteer – Older Adults and Individuals with Disabilities
Team Leaders – Two team leaders will be designated for each shelter that is opened during a disaster. Team leaders must be background checked and may fill in as volunteers as well as team leaders. In coordination with the shelter site manager and COAD, team leaders will identify staffing needs and shifts for volunteers and then develop a staffing plan for supporting the specific vulnerable population in the shelter using the COAD format. This will include identifying shifts based on the needs identified at the shelter and requesting volunteers for those shifts through COAD’s Volunteers on Call list of background checked volunteers. Team leaders may participate in shelter activation training in August 2021.
Volunteers – Work under the direction of the volunteer team leaders and will follow all established shelter protocols. Volunteers must be background checked prior to being on the list for supporting vulnerable populations in the shelters. Volunteers will receive appropriate training to prepare them for volunteering in the shelter. Volunteers are needed to specifically support two key populations. Here are the populations supported and volunteer activities.
Volunteer activities for supporting children in the shelters may include the
following. Children ages groups include: 0-6 years; school-aged 6-12 years; and teens.
Volunteer activities may include:
- Set up the Children’s Activity Area in accordance with guidance from the Shelter site manager. The CAA is primarily for children ages 0-6, but may support school aged children as well.
- Provide support and sense of security to children/teens in the shelter who are experiencing distress.
- Give comfort to infants, providing a respite for parents who must remain in the shelter.
- Play individually with a child or small group of children on crafts or art activities.
- Ability to work on the floor on mats with younger children in the designated activity area.
- Conduct age-appropriate activities for school aged children.
- Supporting families with special needs (developmental, emotional, and/or physical)
- Be interested in working with children or have a background in childcare, education or other related areas.
Limit on scope of activities:
- The Children’s Activity Area is NOT a licensed childcare center, as a result, no feeding, toileting or diapering can be provided by volunteers.
- The CAA is to provide respite care for parents who must remain in the shelter while their child(ren) is in the CAA.
- Any discipline issue must be referred to the parent.
OLDER ADULTS AND INDIVIDUALS WITH DISABILITIES
Volunteer activities for supporting older adults and individuals with disabilities in the shelter may include the following:
- Provide support to shelter evacuees with mobility issues, such as walking with them to the shower, restroom and/or meals. The volunteer will not go in with the person, but remain outside and be in a position to call for assistance if needed. The goal is to ensure safety.
- Aid in providing privacy if requested, such as holding up a sheet or getting a partition.
- Provide opportunities for conversation/companionship.
- Be patient and sensitive to the needs of vulnerable populations.
- Play games with individuals and organize craft activities. Limits on scope of activity
- Volunteers will not be providing caregiver services. Caregiver support will be handled by licensed individuals.