Mi Casa Volunteers Make Big Difference

Volunteering at Mi CasaVolunteer & Outreach specialist Amanda Steinken (pictured at far left discussing volunteer opportunities with a volunteer) has nothing but great things to say about Mi Casa’s amazing volunteers. Without the support of the community, Mi Casa would not be able to serve thousands of low-income individuals and their families every year.

Wondering how you can partner with Mi Casa to empower low-income families to become economically self-sufficient or what makes a valuable volunteer? Read Amanda’s answers to volunteering FAQs below.

1) How do volunteers contribute to Mi Casa?

Volunteers offer administrative support, help with facility upkeep and maintenance, provide event planning support, and much more. Volunteers can also work directly with Mi Casa participants providing job search assistance as Career Coaches. Additionally, volunteers help raise community awareness of Mi Casa’s mission and services, and demonstrate community members are dedicated to combating economic disparities. In 2012 Mi Casa received more than 4,000 volunteer hours, which substantially increased our capacity to serve the community.

2) What does Mi Casa look for in potential volunteer?

We look for volunteers who believe in Mi Casa’s mission of increasing the economic success of Latino and working families. And we seek volunteers who desire to learn and grow from their experience with Mi Casa.

3) What volunteer qualities are most important?

It is very important for volunteers to follow through with their commitments. Flexibility is also a must since our programs constantly adapt to participants’ needs.

4) In what ways can volunteers get involved at Mi Casa?

Mi Casa offers both continual and one-time volunteering opportunities, including:

• Career Center: Volunteers serve as Career Coaches to community job seekers, providing resume, cover letter, and job search assistance through weekly or bi-monthly appointments. Both English speaking and bilingual Career Coach volunteers are needed.

• Events: Volunteers can help secure donations for events, or provide one-time assistance with day-of logistics.

• Maintenance: Mi Casa offers group volunteer opportunities for maintenance projects including painting and grounds upkeep.

We love to help community members get involved with our organization and mission, and can create custom volunteering opportunities.

5) What advice do you have for someone interested in volunteering?

Find an organization and position where your skills and passion are needed and you enjoy giving back, that way the volunteering relationship will be mutually beneficial for everyone involved.

6) What is one way volunteers have made a big difference at Mi Casa?

Mi Casa’s Career Center coaches, who assist community job seekers with finding employment, are all volunteers. The most effective Career Coaches are those who love working with job seekers are are able to connect with them on a personal level, by providing encouragement and expertise. Some Career Coaches meet with the same job seeker multiple times, researching community resources and relevant jobs before their next appointment to provide the best service possible.

Mi Casa staff recently discussed making changes to the Career Center and asked our Career Coaches for feedback. Due to their high level of commitment to the Career Center and Mi Casa’s mission, we gained valuable insight garnered from their experience working with job seekers and their thoughts directly shaped how the Career Center evolved to better meet community needs. In 2012 alone, Career Coaches provided free job search assistance to over 220 community members.

Interested in partnering with Mi Casa to further our mission of helping Latino and other working families trade poverty for lasting economic stability? Contact Amanda at 303-539-5631 or asteinken@MiCasaResourceCenter.org.

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