Requirements for Volunteers
- Understand CMSS’s mission.
- Complete a volunteer application and provide personal references.
- Be willing to undergo a criminal background check (provided at no cost to volunteer).
- Commit to maintaining confidentiality and providing quality, culturally competent services to all individuals, regardless of race, ethnicity, class, gender expression, sex, sexual orientation, economic background, religious beliefs, age or ability.
- Sign a confidentiality agreement.
- Positive attitude and strong interest in working with adults and nonprofits.
- Strong verbal and written communication skills.
- Display initiative and openness to new ideas.
- Strong professional ethics and recognition of client confidentiality.
- Ability to work well with all styles and personalities.
- Ability to follow directions and work independently on tasks or projects.
1123 Emerson St. Suite 200
Evanston, IL 60201
Volunteer Opportunities Available
Make a difference in someone’s life through friendly visiting for one hour a week in the adult’s home. Our Senior Connections Program is a friendly visiting program that pairs isolated adults in Evanston and neighboring communities with caring volunteers from the community. As a visitor, you meet with your new friend weekly to go for walk, sit and talk, enjoy a cup of coffee or tea together, or even go out to eat or shopping.
Anyone can be a volunteer! Our visitors come from all walks of life and from around the globe. Volunteers are college students wanting to make a difference, families with young children who want to “adopt” a grandparent, working career professionals, empty nesters and retired folk.
It’s Easy to get Started
- Complete and return the application found here on our website.
- Meet with the Senior Connections program manager.
- Attend a two hour orientation/training session.
- Provide 2 personal references
- Get a background check.
- Be matched with “your” senior.
Families, couples, friends, and even pets are encouraged to volunteer together.
Our Senior Connections program manager will a personally introduce you to your new friend, help you in planning future visits and provide ongoing support and guidance to help your relationship thrive. Staff and additional training is available for ongoing support.
We ask that you meet with your friend once a week for a year. Your input guides choices of the neighborhood, type of person and times you meet. One hour a week can change a life!
This volunteer will reach out to isolated older adults, via phone calls, to help alleviate loneliness and isolation by providing personal connection, and to provide information on community resources as appropriate. Volunteers will call the same adults every week, so consistent attendance is a must. Training and a standardized script is provided and calls are generally kept to 10 minutes. Volunteers are expected to write clear notes about calls, particularly about issues that may arise, any referrals given, and to always follow up on any previously discussed issues in the next call. Time commitment is 1-2 hours a week for a total of 8 hours a month.
- Understand that follow up calls may occur with older adult participants for quality control.
- Demonstrate empathy and active listening skills
- Demonstrate diplomacy and tact when communicating verbally
- Maintain calm in sometimes difficult conversations