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Volunteer Opportunities

How to Help

Volunteer and Mentorship Opportunities

All volunteers must fill out an application, complete a background check, and attend at least one orientation session.

Refugee & Immigration

Asylum Filing Clinic for Afghan Allies (Virginia): Volunteers with and without legal experience are needed immediately to help support the filing of hundreds of asylum applications for Afghan Allies within the next few months. (Time commitment: Just during the clinic hours.) 

Refugee Family Mentor (Maryland, Virginia): Volunteers spend time with refugee families helping them acclimate to their new homes. Duties vary but tend to focus on English language learning and searching for jobs. This requires a 6-month commitment. While it’s not required volunteers have their own vehicle, the location of our clients’ homes make public transportation difficult. (Time commitment: 10 hours per month for 6 months, meeting in the home of the client. 2 volunteers will be placed with each family.)

Refugee Youth/Family Tutor (Virtual): Family tutoring launched in response to emerging needs during COVID-19. Depending on learning goals and needs, volunteers can be matched with children, youth, or adult clients. Tutoring is a 2-month commitment (at minimum) and is flexible based on goals, strengths, and mutual tutoring preferences. Tutoring topics can range from K-12 subjects, homework help and study skills to ESL and conversation practice. If a youth client is under 15, a parent must be present in the home. If a tutor is under 18, a parent must volunteer or be present. (Time commitment: 1-2 hours per week with a 2-month minimum commitment.)

Refugee Youth Mentor (Maryland, Virginia, Virtual): Volunteers are paired with refugee youth (ages 15 to 24). Activities vary based on the goals and interests, but often focus on showing mentees educational and employment opportunities that are available to them, as well as supporting and empowering them to explore these opportunities, and begin thinking about their futures. There are monthly meetings, and opportunities to network and establish friendships with fellow youth mentors and mentees. (Time commitment: Volunteers need to connect with their mentee at least once a week, or once every two weeks. Calls with program coordinator 1-2 hours per month. At least a 1-year commitment)

Immigration Services Volunteer (Fairfax, Virginia): Work with LSSNCA’s program managers and directly assist clients with processing and filling out applications for lawful permanent residence, family reunification, affidavits of relationship, and other immigration documents. Dari, Pashto and/or Spanish language proficiency preferred. (Time commitment: Flexible time commitment but between the hours of 9 a.m. and 5 p.m. in the office.)

Employment Volunteer (Maryland, Virginia): Assist job developers in our resettlement offices. Employment volunteers help clients explore career options and help LSSNCA job developers with job searches. Volunteers must pass a background check and be knowledgeable in employment search and resume building. Volunteers must also report their hours worked to LSSNCA. Virginia volunteers should have the ability to drive clients as this position may include taking clients to job fairs, to apply for jobs, and to interviews. (Time commitment: 4-8 hours per week between the hours of 9 a.m. – 5 p.m.)

Administrative Assistant (Maryland, Virginia, Virtual): Volunteers provide assistance with general office tasks and data entry. Support to complete reports, paperwork, and proper filing is vital to providing the best service possible to our clients. Some office organization may be required. (Time commitment: 2 hours per week.)

Volunteer Driver (Maryland, Virginia): Volunteers drive refugee clients to appointments (e.g., cultural orientation sessions, health appointments, English classes), especially in the first few months of resettlement. Volunteers should be friendly, supportive, and flexible in picking up/dropping off and driving clients. This is an on-call position sometimes with a few days’ notice. Volunteers are added to volunteer driver email list and notified of driving needs on a regular basis. Volunteers must pass a background check and driving record background check.

Muscle Mover (Maryland, Virginia): Volunteers assist with moving large, heavy donated items to/from LSSNCA storage facilities, or directly to clients’ homes. Volunteers must be able to lift and carry large items (e.g., sofas, mattresses, dressers) and drive. Moves can take place any day of the week, during the daytime. Volunteers are added to the muscle mover email list and notified of needs as they become available.

Unaccompanied Refugee Minor (URM) Program Outreach (Virtual): Volunteers will support program outreach to help recruit new foster parents. The role(s) include reaching out to churches and community groups with information about the URM program and foster parent eligibility, and distributing recruitment flyers around the community. Occasionally, the volunteer(s) may need to assist in information gathering, responding to inquiries, and foster parent information sessions. 

Youth Development and Wellness

Youth Haven Counselor (Washington, D.C., Remote): Volunteers engage the youth in our Youth Development and Wellness (YDW) program through overnight retreat counseling and youth development and family programming. Counselors and participants will attend wellness, team building, and family events, and potentially engage with participants outside of group activities (including mentorship, informal events like attending a sports game or helping with a college application). Activities take place mostly on weekends or virtually. Volunteers must pass a background check and be willing to report the number of mentoring hours to LSSNCA. (Time commitment: must be available for the week of July 31 – August 6, 2022. Applicants must be 18+ years old.) 

General

Scholarship Panel Member/ Scholarship Judge (Remote): The LSSNCA scholarship panel is comprised of volunteers and other community members who are interested in helping individuals achieve their educational goals. LSSNCA clients can apply for the Bold Journey and the Weisburger scholarships for higher education or vocational education programs. Scholarship judges review applications and provide input toward the award decisions. Scholarship judges should have some background or experience in education, scholarships, nonprofit work, or a general interest in supporting refugees towards education and employment. (Time commitment: Approximately 10 hours in May for application review, plus two scholarship panel meetings in February and May, and be responsive to updates.)

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