Our mission is to empower people to make positive life changes.

 To achieve our mission, we:

 ·        provide an environment of dignity, hope, trust, and unconditional acceptance where all people are respected and valued

·        welcome all people in the Kalamazoo community struggling with homelessness, poverty, mental illness, and other challenges 

·        rebuild lives by providing food, daytime shelter, and other supportive services

 ·        work collaboratively with other community organizations

Introduction

Welcome to Ministry with Community (MwC) and thank you for your interest in becoming a MwC Volunteer. MwC has served many people efficiently and effectively largely due to volunteers in the community as well as volunteers from within. Volunteers work in the kitchen, serve food, clean, carry groceries, answer phones, manage the reception area and serve in many more capacities. All volunteers at MwC must be able to interact with others with compassion, flexibility, and sensitivity. Volunteers must also be willing to serve adults experiencing homelessness, poverty, mental illness, and/or substance abuse.

About Ministry with Community

MwC is a daytime drop-in shelter and resource center in Kalamazoo for people who are experiencing hunger, poverty, mental illness, or substance abuse. Staff and volunteers create a safe and welcoming space for our "members" who choose to utilize our services. 

MwC was founded in 1978 by a small group at North Presbyterian Church. Rev. Bob Rasmussen and his congregation received $10,000 from the Presbytery of Lake Michigan to help serve vulnerable populations in Kalamazoo. From this, three non-profits formed: Housing Resource Inc. and Loaves & Fishes and Ministry with Community.

Our doors are open from 6:30am to 5:30pm every day. We offer breakfast and lunch to the community every day of the year. Members can also:

·         drop-in to do their laundry

·         take a shower

·         get a haircut

·         pick up/send out their mail

·         find and create support for their recovery

·         receive guidance and empowerment from a social worker

·         be connected to other community resources or simply rest 

Volunteering at Ministry with Community

All individuals interested in volunteering at MwC must submit an application. Applications are available online at www.ministrywithcommunity.com under the VOLUNTEER tab. 

Once MwC staff have reviewed your application you will be contacted. 

Ministry with Community will update their website with all available volunteer opportunities.

Pertinent Information:

·         All individuals interested volunteering must submit a volunteer application and complete an in-person interview prior to scheduling any volunteer hours.

·         Groups that are interested in volunteering at Ministry with Community must contact the Volunteer and Operations Coordinator to schedule group opportunities.

·         If you will need verification and documentation of your volunteer hours, you must clear this with the Volunteer Coordinator prior to volunteering.  One letter will be provided once hours are completed.

·         While we love having new volunteers, we ask that our volunteers not bring additional family members, friends, or coworkers with them when volunteering.  If you would like to bring a new volunteer with you, please contact your assigned volunteer supervisor so they can prepare the proper training. 

·         The standard minimum age for volunteers is 13. All volunteers under the age of 18 must be accompanied by an adult. There is a 1-to-1 minor to adult ratio for minors under the age of 13. For minors ages 14-17, there is a 4-to-1 minor to adult ratio required.

 General Emergency Information for Volunteers

MwC has a hands-off approach to medical emergencies and will always err on the side of caution by immediately dialing 9-1-1 for assistance. In any situation involving a member’s safety, all volunteers should call 9-1-1 immediately and alert a staff member.

In the case of a weather emergency, the classrooms will be the designated areas for shelter as well as the computer lab if needed for overflow (review map on following page for precise locations).

In the case of a fire, everyone should leave the building immediately. We have fire exits located throughout the building which are indicated.

Volunteer “Dos and Don’ts”

Do:

·         Exercise good judgement and basic courtesy

·         Be kind and respectful

·         Help all persons regardless of race, ethnic background, sex, beliefs, or social position

·         Exercise good time management when scheduling to volunteer

Don’t:

·         Utilize member services while on duty:

·         Engage in behavior that does not promote a hopeful and positive environment for our members, visitors, staff, or other volunteers

·         Come in to volunteer when ill

The Rights of Volunteers and of Ministry with Community

MwC acknowledges the rights of volunteers to:

·         Be respected by MwC staff and other volunteers

·         Refuse placement in a service area.

·         Take vacation leaves without being dismissed from volunteer service

·         Be informed of all endeavors pertinent to the volunteer

·         A comprehensive orientation and training

 

MwC reserves the right to:

·         Depend on volunteers to be reliable, punctual, and confidential

·         Establish guidelines for volunteers per the best interest of our members

·         Be informed of all volunteer activities

·         Be informed of any volunteer conflicts, problems, and/or misunderstandings immediately

·         Recognize and show appreciation of our volunteers

·         Discipline or terminate volunteers when necessary

Day of Volunteering

Sign-in at the appropriate location; Meal Service volunteers- in the kitchen, all other volunteers please sign in in the Volunteer Lounge

  • Please avoid wearing heavily-scented cosmetic items (i.e. lotions, perfumes, cosmetics), as some of our members or volunteers may be sensitive to these items. 
  • If you choose not to leave your valuables in your locked vehicle you can store it inside a volunteer locker located within the Volunteer Lounge.

·         Parking is available in front or on the side of our building at 500 N. Edwards St. No parking passes are necessary.

·         All volunteers should enter through the front (accessed from Edwards Street).

o   If it is your first-time volunteering, please stop by the service desk to be directed to the appropriate volunteer supervisor area of volunteering.

Thank you once again for your interest in serving the members of Ministry with Community! 

If you have any additional questions please contact Megan Stull, Volunteer and Operations Coordinator. P: 269-366-3095 E: volunteers@ministrywithcommunity.org