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Volunteer at Palomar

Imagine yourself rushing into a strange building, children in tow. You are scared, hurt, and have no place to rest or find safety. Then, instead of walking into a gray, gloomy building, you open the door of Palomar to find a calm, reassuring voice and a safe space to sit and rest. Someone offers you coffee, and a volunteer offers to show your children the playroom. All of a sudden, getting help seems a little less frightening, and there is a glimpse of something you did not believe you would ever find again: HOPE.

Domestic violence, sexual violence, and stalking are all major, intersecting issues in our society and there are many people who truly desire to help those affected, but do not know where or how to start.

This is where Palomar comes into the picture. Palomar offers many services that allow community members to get involved. From assisting staff in the office to sitting with clients to support them, there are unlimited opportunities for volunteers.

Volunteer Program Goals

The goals of our volunteer program are to match each volunteer with a fulfilling area of service and to provide volunteers with the training and support they need to assist those affected by domestic violence. Some of our volunteer goals include:

  • Provide current and frequent training to volunteers on domestic violence, sexual violence, and stalking issues, including best practices in working with clients and the community.
  • Provide a variety of tasks and opportunities for volunteers to become involved in assisting Palomar clients.
  • Have volunteers available to provide a safe and comfortable atmosphere for clients.
  • Maintain a friendly hospitality area for guests.

Direct Services Opportunities

Working closely with Palomar staff, a Direct Services Volunteer will work directly with clients and may assist with the following duties:

  • Answering phones, greeting incoming clients, and meeting client needs
  • Directing clients to the appropriate reception area
  • Assisting navigators as requested
  • Managing the lounge spaces in order to ensure a warm, comforting environment
  • Escorting clients through the facility and to appointments when appropriate
  • General office support

Requirements: standard Palomar volunteer application, interview, background screening, and orientation with demonstrated experience or ability to work with people in crisis and ability to show sensitivity to the issue of domestic violence.

Time Commitment: Palomar requests a minimum of one, 4-hour shift per week for at least 6-months or one semester.

Children’s Room Volunteer

Childcare volunteers will assist Palomar staff in monitoring the Children’s Sanctuary.

Tasks may include:

  • Direct supervision of children of various ages
  • Monitoring children’s playroom
  • Reading books
  • Age-appropriate game play
  • Supervising educational videos
  • Supervising arts and crafts
  • Assisting older children with homework assignments

Requirements: standard Palomar volunteer application, interview, background screening, and orientation with demonstrated experience or ability to work with people in crisis and ability to show sensitivity to the issue of domestic violence.

Time Commitment: Palomar requests a minimum of one, 4-hour shift per week for at least 6-months or one semester.

Spiritual Care Program

Because spirituality plays an important role in many people’s lives, we are creating a Spiritual Care program to provide spiritual support to those clients that wish to have this be part of our collaborative support.

The role of the Palomar Spiritual Care Provider is to give spiritual support to our clients. They are also available to assist Palomar staff when time allows; however, their main focus is to serve Palomar clients. Working closely with staff, a Spiritual Care Provider will work directly with clients and may assist with the following duties:

  • Be aware of lounge areas to assure clients are comfortable and be a soothing presence when clients are present.
  • Provide connections to additional faith-based community resources when requested.
  • Give invocations, benedictions, special presentations, etc. for official ceremonies.
  • Visit sick or injured employees at their request.
  • Provide care during bereavement situations.
  • Provide occasional Lunch and Learns regarding spiritual aspects of healing and growth; present brief talks to help staff with their strategies for stress management, as requested.
  • Provide coping assistance for Palomar and Partner Agency staff and volunteers following stressful or overwhelming experiences.
  • Help with peer support functions such as monthly birthday lunches.
  • Build awareness of Palomar and the issues that bring clients to us by inviting faith leaders to come for Open Houses and by offering a presentation for the faith communities at their locations.
  • Provide support to staff or partner staff during or after a work-related crisis such as client deaths, active shooter, or storm damage.

Requirements: standard Palomar volunteer application, interview (with particular attention to demonstrated experience or ability to work with people in crisis and to show sensitivity to the issues of domestic violence and other violence that Palomar clients deal with), background screening and the 25-hour training, either April, August or January prior to on-going volunteer presence at Palomar.

Time Commitment: Palomar requests the volunteer commit to a minimum of one 4-hour shift per week for at least 6 months or one semester.

Non Direct Services Opportunities

Administrative Volunteer

Working under the supervision of staff, Administrative Volunteers will provide administrative support.

Tasks may include:

  • Answering the Palomar business phone line
  • Assisting with distribution of mail
  • Filing support
  • Data entry
  • Assistance with mailings and other projects
  • Other administrative support as assigned

Requirements: standard Palomar volunteer application, interview, background screening, and orientation.

Time Commitment: Palomar requests a minimum of one, 4-hour shift per week for at least 6-months or one semester. Volunteers are welcome to set a regular schedule that fits their availability.

Special Projects Volunteer

Working under the supervision of staff, Special Project Volunteers will provide support in specific areas of need.

Tasks may include:

  • Assisting with mailings
  • Providing support on special projects
  • Staffing for community events and/or trainings

Requirements: standard Palomar volunteer application, interview, background screening, and orientation.

Time Commitment: For a special projects volunteer, hours may be determined based on the project to be completed. Volunteers are welcome to set a regular, weekly volunteer schedule as well.