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Volunteer

Help us provide a meaningful voice for youth experiencing trauma and crisis and ensure that all youth are safe, healthy, independent, successful and valued. Pathfinders offers many volunteer opportunities for individuals and groups to make a positive impact. Positions offer varying levels of time commitments ranging from one-time projects to ongoing, scheduled positions.

Group Volunteer Opportunities

Fundraising Events

Spread Pathfinders’ mission and host your own fundraising event to support the nearly 7,000 youth we service annually. We can provide you with all of the tools and support you need to advance our incredible mission of Empowering Youth – Changing Lives!

SUBMIT AN EVENT APPLICATION

In-Kind Donations & Drives

There are a number of ongoing, urgent and one-time needs for youth experiencing homelessness – clothing, hygiene items, holiday gifts, school supplies, etc. We will work with you to determine the best time and most needed items for conducting a drive. And we can provide the necessary tools to share the impact you’ll make!

SUBMIT AN IN-KIND DRIVE APPLICATION

Drop-In Center Dinners

Come engage with our youth! One way we build community and encourage positive adult interaction is by inviting community members to participate in dinner with our youth. Guests provide and serve a buffet-style meal (catered, pre-prepared or cooked on site) and enjoy the meal with our youth. Inquire for available dates!

SUBMIT A DINNER APPLICATION

Group Projects

We frequently need groups to help with special projects such as deep cleaning, assembling outreach kits, painting, gardening and donation sorting that enhances the experience and the service we provide to youth at Pathfinders. Do you have a special skill? Let us know if you can provide a special form of service for our youth!

SUBMIT AN APPLICATION FOR YOUR GROUP

Ongoing Individual Volunteer Positions

All volunteer position applicants are required to:

1. Complete Pathfinders’ online volunteer application

2. Complete an interview with the Volunteer & Community Engagement Manager

3. Complete all necessary personal paperwork

4. Return three completed reference forms

5. Pass background checks and Milwaukee County Caregiver approval

Applicants seeking Master’s level internships and applicants that have lived outside the state of Wisconsin within the last 3 years will need to schedule and complete a fingerprint background check that will be coordinated by Pathfinders.

6. Attend the intern and volunteer orientation

Emergency Youth Shelter

Assistant Advocate

Assistant Advocates assist with the needs of its residents and maintain the high level of care provided to youth at our Shelter. Under staff supervision, Assistant Advocates have direct and constant one-on-one interaction with the residents and provide them with a positive role model. A six-month commitment to work one 4 ½-hour shift per week is required.

Responsibilities:

  • Answer phones, provide information and crisis counseling.
  • Complete intakes and resident orientations.
  • Participate in daily groups.
  • Assist staff with general house management.

Qualifications:

  • Be 20 years old or older.
  • Possess a high school diploma or equivalent.
  • Have experience or interest in working with teens and their families.
  • Ability to work cooperatively with paid staff and accept supervision.

Fill out a Volunteer Application

Learn more about the Youth Shelter

Youth Drop-In Center

Program Assistant

Drop-In Center Program Assistants build relationships and provide positive role models for Drop-In Center youth members. They supervise and interact with the youth and assist staff with day-to-day Drop management.

Responsibilities:

  • Supervise & interact informally with clients as a positive adult role model.
  • Monitor kitchen/locker room/showers/laundry room/computer lab access
  • Participate in client orientations.
  • Participate in groups/programs.
  • Assist staff with documentation, filing and supportive related duties.

Qualifications:

  • Be 20 years or older.
  • Possess a high school diploma or GED.
  • Have experience or interest in working with teens and young adults.
  • Ability to work cooperatively with paid staff and accept supervision.

Fill out a Volunteer Application

Learn more about the Drop-In Center

Southeastern Education Center

Youth Mentor

Youth Mentors meet with their student during normal school hours to provide guidance, support and assistance to build life skills, academic success and confidence. A 1-hour commitment per week is required.

Responsibilities:

  • Plan and participate in activities that will strengthen the relationship and build self-esteem.
  • Assist youth in setting goals and work towards accomplishing them.
  • Attend sponsor/youth group events.

Qualifications:

  • Be 21 years or older.
  • Possess a high school diploma or equivalent.
  • Be a willing listener, supportive, patient and flexible.

Fill out a Volunteer Application

Learn more about SEC

Anti-Sexual Violence Services

Graduate Youth Advocate CRAY Intern

Youth Advocates provide advocacy and support to the New Paths Program and CRAY Collaborative to improve the local response to commercially sexually exploited youth.

Responsibilities:

  • Support program development and administrative duties.
  • Be on call weekly to provide urgent accompaniment and advocacy to exploited youth.
  • Build relationships with community partners and participate in project through CRAY.
  • Provide crisis intervention, harm reduction outreach and advocacy services. Refer clients to community resources and other organizations as appropriate.
  • Compile records and prepare reports including case files and correspondence with clients and other systems or services involved.

Qualifications:

  • Possess Bachelor’s Degree and be enrolled in appropriate Graduate program.
  • Possess experience/interest in working with teens and/or their families.
  • Be able to make independent decisions in an environment where there is exposure to stressful and/or crisis situations.
  • Possess a non-judgmental attitude.
  • Must have access to personal transportation to be able to respond to advocate requests within one hour.

Fill out a Volunteer Application

For more information on volunteering at Pathfinders, please contact our Volunteer & Community Engagement Manager, Jake Spence, at jspence@pathfindersmke.org.

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