Our services are possible because of the wonderful people of the community who volunteer their time and skills to the cause. Family Promise could not function without volunteer support, so please take some time to read about all the opportunities that are available.
Most volunteer positions require a one-time training session. If you are interested in volunteering please contact us at (850) 623 - 5300 and let us know where you would like to contribute.
Board of Directors
Family Promise of Santa Rosa is governed by a Board of Directors. The board meets once a month to discuss all business of the organization such as issues concerning policies and procedures, upcoming events, needs of the organization, etc., and to vote on any changes in the way the organization operates.
Family Promise of Santa Rosa functions through four committees or teams: Finance and Audit, Board Governance and Development, Resource Development, and Strategic Communication. The Chair of each committee usually comes from the board, but one person can't do everything that is under the umbrella of each committee. They need a team. Volunteers can use their interests and skills to find a place where they fit. The list below, while not limited to what is listed, is what each committee is responsible for.
Our Day Center is the center of operation for our organization and for the families staying in our Interfaith Hospitality Network. It is open Monday-Friday from 8am-5pm. This is where our families come to create resumes, search and apply for jobs, make doctor's appointments, and conduct all of their business. We need volunteers to answer phones, data entry, light filing, make copies, greet guests/visitors and accept donations when they arrive. We could also use one or two volunteers to pick up furniture and appliance donations. Some volunteers can come on a weekly basis while others can only come once a month. We are always looking for volunteers in this area and are open to whatever your schedule will allow.
Family Promise operates with the support of the local faith-based community. Monday through Friday dinner is provided to the families and enjoyed at the home of the congregation. Volunteers prepare the meal and eat with the families and the leftovers are given for another day. Stories are shared and encouragement given to the families along with other needed supplies the help the families graduate quicker.
More often than not, families entering our program do not have transportation. They have no way to get to appointments, put applications in for jobs, get to interviews, get to jobs or get to the churches where they stay. Family Promise has a part-time driver on staff to remedy this situation. But, there are times when one driver is not enough. We are always on the lookout for people who would like to volunteer to take a family to one of their appointments.
Family Promise has a van that transports families to and from host congregations, to interviews and jobs, and to all other appointments. These vehicles carry precious cargo and need to be kept up as much as possible. Sometimes a family may have their own vehicle to utilize that may need maintenance work as well. We are always looking for volunteers knowledgeable about auto maintenance to help keep our vehicles in the best condition for the guests.
As mentioned above, host congregations are responsible for providing one hot meal daily to families in the IHN. Volunteers to provide these meals are not always found within a host congregation. Coordinators are always appreciative for more volunteers willing to provide meals for the guests.
Along with the day center property, Family Promise also has transitional housing and low-income rental properties. We are always looking for volunteers to cut grass and maintain flower beds at all of our properties.
Donations are received at the day center all the time. Items include clothing, toys, food, shoes and a plethora of other things. Most of the time these items get put into a back room or out in the storage building without sorting or organizing until a later time. It is very helpful to have volunteers come to the day center once a week or so to sort through the donations and organize them in a more timely manner. An hour or two might be all it takes!
During the week, families go to work or come to the day center from 8am-5pm to seek employment. But, on Saturdays, families are typically at the host congregation all day. Volunteers must be at the congregation as long as the families are there. Therefore, planning activities for Saturdays is very important and can help the day go by faster. This can include something as simple as playing games, inside and outside, with the children in the program or reading a book/having story time.
Special Needs of Guests
When a family enters the Family Promise program, there may be essential items its members need. Clothing, toiletries, shoes, diapers, and formula are just a few examples. While we strive to have these items on hand, it is not always the case. We may need volunteers to help provide these items to families. Sometimes the special needs are more extensive such as a crib for a baby, a car battery/repair, or help moving to a house when it is secured. An email can be sent out to those interested in this support opportunity when the need arises.
As mentioned previously, Family Promise has a transitional housing program and a low-income housing program. As guests leave these facilities after securing permanent housing, there is a need for volunteers to get the apartments back in shape for new tenants. This may include, but is not limited to, cleaning, painting, small repairs, and taking inventory of items that were furnished in the apartments.
This is by no means meant to be an exhaustive list of volunteer opportunities within Family Promise. But, if there is an area listed that caught your attention and you would like more information, don't hesitate to contact our office at 850-623-5300. Keep in mind that some of these areas are suitable for local mission projects for churches and youth groups or great community service projects for high school age kids. A little bit of your time can make a major impact on the lives of homeless children and families!