Volunteer at CONTACT Altoona to Make a Difference in Blair County
CONTACT Altoona has been assisting the residents of Blair County and surrounding communities since 1982. Our volunteers represent a wide range of experiences and backgrounds. What they share in common is the willingness to make a difference in the lives of others. CONTACT Altoona volunteers are people just like you who want to share their time and help others!
YOU GIVE…Caring, compassionate support to people who have an immediate need.
YOU GET…Incredible fulfillment and enhanced communication skills you will use throughout your life.
CONTACT Altoona offers volunteer opportunities in several areas. No experience is necessary—in depth training is provided.
Helpline Volunteer for Listening and Referral Services
You can be a Helpline Volunteer responding to people in need on our community Helpline. Our trained volunteers assist callers in sorting through complex or confusing situations. They remain anonymous while on duty and are trained to offer services ranging from emotional support, to providing referrals, to crisis intervention. A volunteer must be 18 and a high school graduate at time of application. Training covers special techniques for responding to people in crisis and sessions include basic and advanced listening skills, information and referral assistance, and crisis software.
CONTACT Altoona Helpline Volunteer Role Outline
Report to Supervisory Staff and the Executive Director of CONTACT Altoona. The Helpline Volunteer will assist CONTACT Altoona by providing trained therapeutic response on CONTACT Altoona’s Helpline within the framework of CONTACT Altoona’s established guidelines.
- Must be at least 18 years of age at time of application.
- Have a minimum of high-school education or equivalency.
- Successful completion of the Initial Training Program.
- Successful completion of phoneroom apprenticeship.
- Have not utilized the services of CONTACT Altoona within the past year.
- Demonstration of non-judgmental, active listening skills.
- Adherence to the philosophy, policies and procedures of CONTACT Altoona.
- Confidentiality: sign an Oath of Confidentiality related to callers and phoneroom location.
- Anonymity: agreement to remain anonymous when volunteering on the telephone.
- Attitude: use of non-judgmental attitude through active listening.
- Telephone Commitment: volunteer 8 hours per month on the Helpline.
- Length of Service: commitment of at least 1 year of volunteer service.
- In-Service: commitment to continuing education equaling four in-service events per year.
- Status Change Requirement: to change status from Volunteer Associate Telephone Worker (ATW) to Volunteer Telephone Worker (TW)* approval of the Executive Director and the following criteria is required.
- *A TW may serve shifts alone and mentor other volunteers.
- Initial 60 days after class-end: 16 helpline shift hours served
- Within six months after class-end: 48 shift hours
- Within one year of class-end: 96 shift hours
Note: If status change is not achieved within one year, the volunteer may be required to repeat the training course.
Reasons for Terminating Volunteer Relationship
- Violation of the pledge of confidentiality of the caller.
- Violation of the pledge of anonymity of the volunteer telephone worker.
- Contacting or meeting with callers at any time for any reason.
- Violation of Center policies and/or procedures.
- Any falsification of information provided on Application for Helpline Volunteer Training.