Change your life. Enrich another.
Shanti volunteers provide one-to-one emotional support to people living with HIV/AIDS, cancer, and other life-threatening illnesses. By providing active, non-judgmental listening and a comforting, sustaining relationship, Shanti volunteers help empower clients to identify and meet their own needs.
A powerful training allows participants to explore life’s real issues. This training is about you as much as it is about your potential clients. We hope to teach you some ways to take care of yourself; we also offer you some ways to improve your connections with others.
Small group support is an integral component of your Shanti volunteer experience. Small groups with other volunteers can be a place to share insights, practice communication and listening skills, define one’s personal mission, and create a caring, supportive community.
Volunteer opportunities include: offering one-to-one emotional support, working in the Shanti office, participating in fundraising activities and special projects, or serving on the Board of Directors. People fluent in Spanish or American Sign Language are encouraged to apply.
Becoming a Shanti Volunteer
- Commitment: As an emotional support volunteer, you make a one-year commitment to Shanti, beginning with two weekends of training (Saturday and Sunday during the day) for a total of 30 hours. There is also a commitment to be available for your client for three hours weekly, and two hours every other week for small group support.
- Application: Please contact the Shanti. A staff member will answer your questions and mail you a volunteer application. You may also print out our online volunteer application. (You can also copy and paste this application into a blank word processing document).
- Orientation: Once your application is received, a casual meeting will be scheduled with a staff member or experienced Shanti volunteers. This is a time to ask questions and discuss commitment, after which you may register for the next Shanti training.
- Training: Before being matched with a client, volunteers participate in an in-depth training that explores life’s real issues: emotional support concepts, listening skills, grief and loss, and a variety of other topics. Volunteers inevitably become better listeners and communicators after this experience. Throughout the volunteer training process you will give and receive feedback, and have the opportunity to decide whether or not Shanti work is right for you. If you are interested in working weekly shifts in a hospice or jail setting, the training process is the same. Our upcoming Shanti volunteer training:
- Upcoming Shanti volunteer trainings in 2008:Multifaith Works Office
- Click here to download an application.
- May 31st and June 1st, 7th, and 8th, 9:30 a.m. -5:00 p.m.
- Client Match: Following your training, staff members will review client profiles to identify a possible client match, considering both your needs and preferences and those of the client. When a potential match is identified, you will be contacted and given an opportunity to consider the match. If both you and the client accept the match, you will proceed to meet with your client.
- Small Group Support: After your training and client match, you will join a small group with other Shanti volunteers. This bi-monthly meeting is a place to receive support throughout the relationship with your client, as well as give support to others.
Click for more information about Shanti’s One-to-One Emotional Support Program.