I'd Like to Help
What are Helper Teams?
Helper Teams consist of six volunteers with varying capacities and skills, who support those who are self-isolating or quarantined at home. Each Team has a Coordinator who ensures a fair balance of assignments and follow-through, and is the point of contact with the Project Facilitator.
This team approach is meant to ensure that the different skills, abilities, capacities and time of the Helpers is deployed quickly and efficiently. The Team supports one another and ensures no one is getting burned out. They check in about best practices and brainstorm solutions together.
What sorts of things can Helpers expect to do?
To support self-isolating or quarantined individuals to stay home, Helpers will be their “agents” in community. Picking up groceries, prescriptions, walking the dog, tending the garden and driving folks to medical appointments are the most obvious examples.
Those who can’t drive or leave home can still be helpful by providing support by phone, text or chat.
What sorts of things are Helpers not expected to do?
Requests should be reasonable and focused on supporting the individual(s) to stay home. Aside from the costs associated with transportation within our service area volunteers are not expected to incur any personal expense and should ensure that those we are supporting have made arrangements for payment. Volunteers may wish to keep a record of transactions.
Please do not attempt activities outside your knowledge-base or ones which make you feel uncomfortable in any way. If requests or interactions are concerning, advise the Coordinator. Together you can brainstorm or bring in the Facilitator. If requests are specialized, consider asking the Facilitator if there is anyone on the Specialty Team who could help.
How much time should I expect to put in – and when?
Understanding that these are complicated times, and we all have many emerging and ongoing responsibilities, volunteers should offer what time they feel they can. Self-care is important to being able to continue support. One advantage of being on a Team is that the six Helpers can support each other in ensuring that the needs of recipients are matched with the abilities of Helpers.
I have a special skill, interest, or focus – how can I help?
Volunteers can opt to be part of a separate Specialty Team of people who have a special skill to offer, taking some of the pressure off the Helper Teams. Examples of “specialties” include translation, dog-walking and gardening. Folks can be members of a Helper Team who are willing to be tasked by other Teams for this skill or they can opt to join this team only to offer one or more service (eg. dog-walking and that’s it). These Helpers will be assigned Recipients from other teams.
Okay, I’m in! What next?
Fill in the application here, and what services or skills you are able to offer. Applicants may apply as a household or individually; either way, list all task-areas individuals in the household can offer. Unless you are already a volunteer with Alexandra Neighbourhood House, you will need to complete a Criminal Record Check. There is no cost to do this.
After your application is processed, the Project Facilitator will be in touch to assign you to a Helper Team and introduce you to the Coordinator.