1. I would like to be a volunteer at Families Forward. What do I have to do to get started? Please fill out an online Volunteer Interest Form. After reviewing your form, we will invite you to attend a New Volunteer Orientation. All volunteers will need to complete the Volunteer Release and Waiver of Liability Form prior to their first volunteer activity.
2. Can I just show up? No. Families Forward values the time of all of our volunteers and wishes to ensure a positive volunteer experience for every individual. We prefer to schedule your volunteer opportunity in advance so we can guarantee work for you and have someone available to orient you to your specific task. Please contact our Volunteer Manager at (949) 379-8373 to schedule time for volunteering or if you have immediate questions regarding volunteer opportunities.
3. What ongoing volunteer opportunities are most available? Typical volunteer jobs may include:
- Office Assistance
- Food Pantry Volunteer
- Food Pantry Driver
- Bilingual English-Spanish Volunteer
Families Forward also has a great need for volunteers during the holiday season and for special events throughout the year.
4. How often do New Volunteer Orientations occur? New Volunteer Orientations take place once or twice per month, based on new volunteer interest, typically on Thursdays at 3:30 pm.
5. When can I volunteer? Most volunteer opportunities occur on weekdays during our regular business hours (Monday- Thursday from 9:00 am – 5:00 pm and Friday from 9:00 am – 1:00 pm). Evening and weekend opportunities are available occasionally during the holiday season. Families Forward will happily accommodate your schedule to the best of our ability.
6. As a volunteer, will I get to work directly with client families? Because of our confidentiality policies, volunteers and interns will have minimal contact with clients. Interactions may include greeting them at the Front Desk or in the Food Pantry and speaking with them over the phone.
7. Are there any age requirements for volunteering? For safety reasons, the minimum age for volunteering for most opportunities is 10 years old. Volunteers ages 10-13 must come with parental supervision. Volunteers age 14 and older may come without a parent. Volunteers age 10-17 must have their own Volunteer Release and Waiver of Liability Form signed by their parent.
8. My children are younger than 10 years old. How can they help? There are many ways in which younger volunteers can help Families Forward, though for safety reasons, these opportunities are typically not on-site. We would be happy to talk with you to find the best fit for your children. Additionally, younger youth groups are welcome to schedule a tour of our Program Center to learn more about our programs.
9. How do I sign up to volunteer for the holiday programs? Families Forward greatly relies on volunteer support during the holiday season. The holidays are the most popular time of year for volunteering. To ensure that everyone has an equal opportunity to express interest, we will place our holiday giving volunteer forms on our website in October.
10. Does Families Forward offer an internship program? Yes, we offer unpaid internships to students and we will accommodate your university’s internship requirements. Internships are offered through specific departments (Program, Operations, Fund Development, and Accounting). All interns will also have opportunities to experience the breadth of our organization. Please contact our Volunteer Manager at (949) 379-8373 for more information about internships or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
11. Does working at Families Forward satisfy my required community service hours? Yes, Families Forward will accommodate community service hour requests to the best of our ability. Please note that we cannot always accommodate these requests, depending on the timeframe required and the amount of hours needed. Please contact our Volunteer Manager at (949) 379-8373 for more information. If community service is court-ordered, volunteers must be referred through OneOC. Please call OneOC at (714) 953-5757.