The first step in becoming a volunteer is to fill out our online application form. We will work with you and your interests to find the role that is right for you. If you haven’t yet decided which area is best for you to volunteer in, please see our What I Can Do page.
Once you have filled out your application form, we will be in touch with you to let you know about the next Direct Service 40-hour Training Dates and Information Sessions. Information Sessions will give you more information about what it means to be a COHA Volunteer so that you can decide if working with individuals living until death and their loved ones is a suitable volunteer role for you. You will also be told about the training requirements and expectations of your role as a volunteer.
After attending an information session, if you feel the organization will be a fit, you will be required to meet with a COHA Staff member. At that meeting you will have the chance to ask questions and share more about yourself and your reasons for wishing to volunteer with COHA. COHA staff will interview you to ensure that volunteering with COHA is the correct fit. Although the work volunteers do with clients is somewhat simple, it is not easy, we want to make sure you know the limitations and benefits of the role before you commit to training.
Once you have been selected for the training, you will be required to complete a criminal records search, provide the names of two character references and pay the $110 training fee. The fee covers the cost of the training manual, vest, name tag, criminal records search, first year membership, additional handouts and supplies.
Volunteer Training consists of 40 hours of class time and shadowing. Volunteers who complete the training receive a certificate of acknowledgement. Training is offered in the Spring and Fall most years and focuses on understanding the experience of death and dying, grief and loss, communication skills, spirituality, role of the volunteer, in addition to the role of the Hospice Palliative Care Team.
Upon completion, volunteers will be assigned to a program area that is assessed as suitable by the Coodinators of Services as well as the volunteer. Volunteers are requested to commit to the organization for at least two years. As per Provincial regulation, all Volunteers are required to either receive a flu vaccination or wear a face mask during flu season (Dec-Mar).
Volunteers are supported in their practice with Enrichment Sessions, Wellness Workshops, Volunteer Support Meetings and Appreciation Events. The experience, learning and growth opportunities that Volunteers share show how much volunteer supports their desire to support others.
What if I don’t want to be a Direct Service Volunteer?
If you are interested in other volunteer opportunities, such as the Help Desk at Hospice House or the Hospice House Serenity Garden please fill out our application (hyperlink) and indicate these are your areas of interest. Depending on the current schedule of volunteers we may not need your assistance when you apply, but we will be in touch to discuss your interests in volunteering with COHA.
You can also contact us at 250-763-5511 to learn more about current opportunities.