If you would like to volunteer with Helpmate or receive more information about
volunteer opportunities and the next training program which will take place in January 2023, please submit the above Interest Form.
Helpmate was started by volunteers in 1978. It was run by volunteer advocates for years after. It is because of the passion, the commitment, and the dedication of volunteers, that Helpmate exists today. It is with the continued commitment of volunteers since, that we have become the organization we are today.
Join us in our mission to eliminate abuse and fear. Together we can empower
our community to create a world that is free of violence.
We have many opportunities available as we continue to rely heavily on volunteers to help meet the ever-increasing demand for domestic violence services. Volunteers can train for direct or indirect service roles and assist in a variety of capacities, and at all levels of program and agency operation.
As a volunteer with Helpmate, we will work with you and your current schedule to be flexible with your shift times based on your availability.
Helpmate volunteers are required to complete 20 classroom hours of Domestic Violence Advocate Training and are provided with ongoing education and staff support to work with victims of domestic violence and their children and to support overall agency needs.
The Helpmate Board of Directors is composed of volunteers and works alongside staff to help fulfill our mission. If you are interested in learning more about board membership please contact our Executive Director April Burgess-Johnson: 828.254.2968, ext. 113 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Direct Service Positions
Children’s Services Volunteers provide childcare during our weekly support group meetings, court hearings, or when parents need time to relax, work on chores, cook a meal, or meet with their case manager in the shelter. This opportunity can also involve assisting with weekly enrichment activities like art classes, game nights, etc. By offering their time and care, Children’s Volunteers show the youngest victims of domestic violence that everyone deserves to be nurtured and loved.
Family Justice Center Receptionists serve as a first point of contact for survivors, not only for Helpmate, but all agencies housed in the Family Justice Center. Receptionists greet walk-ins and facilitate their access to services. They also direct clients with appointments to the appropriate staff contact and assist the public in understanding what services are available at the FJC. These volunteers offer much-needed support to Helpmate’s Intake Specialists so they can work more closely with survivors in the FJC.
Hotline Advocates assist survivors of domestic violence by answering calls on Helpmate’s 24-hour hotline. These advocates provide emotional support, safety planning strategies, community resource referrals, and information about Helpmate’s free services. Hotline Advocates often serve as the first, critical link to Helpmate services- and to living without abuse. Bilingual advocates are greatly needed to help answer calls from Spanish-speaking survivors.
Youth Prevention Educators give presentations and foster conversations about dating violence and healthy relationships with various groups of youth in the community (e.g. middle school classes, high school classes, faith-based groups, after-school programs, etc.). This kind of outreach opportunity will allow for the youth in the community to learn about dating/domestic violence resources and be better prepared for future intimate relationships. (Please note: This role has very limited opportunities for engagement).
Indirect Service Positions
Donation Volunteers support our staff by picking up donations from various places in the community on a weekly or monthly basis (churches, businesses, etc.). They deliver the donations to our Emergency Shelter and the Family Justice Center so that our clients can have access to food, cell phones, toiletries, children’s items, etc. With the support of these volunteers, survivors are able to get the basic necessities they need in order to move forward with a life free of violence and fear.
Outreach Ambassadors provide assistance with community outreach and awareness efforts. This role involves reaching out to community locations and event organizers to foster connections and distribute awareness materials in Buncombe County. This role can also include seeking out opportunities to expand our presence in the community, at fairs, markets, and festivals.
Community Event/Fundraiser Volunteers support Helpmate by working with staff to carry out Helpmate’s fundraising and awareness events. This primarily involves staffing Helpmate’s resource tables and giving out information about domestic abuse and our free programs. Special event volunteers are not just Helpmate’s fundraisers—they are our friendraisers!
Required Volunteer Training
“Domestic Violence 101” Orientation – 4 Hours
Anyone interested in volunteering with Helpmate must first attend a “Domestic Violence 101” Orientation. During this orientation, we will review Helpmate services and the basic dynamics of domestic abuse, as well as available volunteer roles.
After orientation, volunteers who sign-up for direct service roles are required to complete our 16-hour Domestic Violence Advocate Training.
Domestic Violence Advocate Training – 16 Hours
The Helpmate Domestic Violence Advocate Training is held over the course of two Saturdays following orientation, and amounts to an additional 16 hours of classroom training.
Any and all volunteers may attend this training but it is mandatory for volunteers who plan to do a direct service role: FJC Reception Support, Hotline Advocacy, Children’s Services, and Youth Prevention Education.
Your learning as an advocate is always ongoing at Helpmate and we will provide you with observational training, continuing education, practice, and feedback. We want to ensure that every volunteer who works with us has the skills, support, and confidence they need to be excellent and effective Domestic Violence Advocates.
Choosing to volunteer with Helpmate is a big commitment. Because of our extended training and education, we ask all volunteers to commit to at least one year of service after being trained as an advocate. We want our volunteers to stick around for a long while to support survivors and our staff!
“Domestic Violence 101” Orientations are offered three times a year—usually in January, May, and August.
Domestic Violence Advocate Trainings are offered two times a year—usually in January and August.
If you are interested in participating in a formal internship to meet undergraduate college program requirements, please contact April Burgess-Johnson, Helpmate’s Executive Director at (828)254-2968 ext. 113 or email@example.com.
If you are a graduate-level student and interested in participating in a formal internship, please contact Lauren Ray, Helpmate’s Counseling Coordinator, at (828)254-2968, ext. 114 or firstname.lastname@example.org.