The Center for Women and Children in Crisis, a battered women's shelter, will hold a training session Saturday, Sept. 29, from 10:30 to 6 p.m. at the Provo City Library for people interested in becoming volunteers.
The center, a United Way agency, provides shelter and counseling for women who are physically, sexually or emotionally abused. More than 600 women and their children were provided a safe place to stay in the past year.According to the center's volunteer coordinator, Diana Starks, volunteers are what makes the program work. "Without our volunteer force, many of the women and children who seek a listening ear would have nowhere to turn."
Volunteers are asked to attend the upcoming training session and then commit to work a four-hour shift each week at the shelter. Volunteers are also asked to commit to stay with the program for at least four months.
The volunteer's responsibilities include answering the hot-line calls, maintaining client case files, helping the women in the shelter and occasionally transporting them to and from appointments.
In 1988 the shelter received 4,715 hot-line calls. In 1989 that number jumped to 6,021 calls.
Some volunteers are assigned to work with the children who are staying with their mothers at the shelter. Children's volunteers plan and execute activities for the young-sters.
Lorri Hirst, United Way's Volunteer Center director, said the Center for Women and Children is one of the most sought-after places to volunteer because of the volunteers' direct involvement in all the shelter's programs.
"Volunteers who serve at the shelter soon discover that they are definitely needed and that they can make a big difference in someone's life," Hirst said.
Volunteers do not need any special background to work at the shelter. They must be at least 18 years old and be willing to learn more about domestic violence in Utah County through the training offered on Saturday.
For more information on shelter volunteers, call the United Way Volunteer Center at 374-8108. Other opportunities include:
- Highland Elementary and Scera Park Elementary schools both need volunteers to work with slower students in the resource rooms. Volunteers are needed to work once or twice a week for about two hours each time.
- Recreation for All Handicapped is looking for a volunteer to work one-on-one teaching a polio victim to swim. The volunteer must be able to work two or three hours each week either at the Provo or Orem recreation pools.
For more information on these and other volunteer opportunities, call the United Way Volunteer Center at 374-8108.