Thank you so much for your interest in helping BIC and the Berkshires’ immigrants!
The Berkshire Immigrant Center greatly values the contributions of our volunteers. We try hard to match the talents and interests of our volunteers and students and to flexibly respond to their schedules.
To ensure that our needs line up with those of our volunteers and create a mutually beneficial experience, we have begun a process of planning more defined roles that will align with specific BIC needs. We are also working to raise funds for a volunteer coordinator position. Please feel free to check back on this page for updates. We are currently collecting applications for a) technical support and b) in-office support. Please read through the following descriptions and email Board@berkshireic.com to assist with technical support and firstname.lastname@example.org for in- office support.
Technical Support (Outside of the Office):
We are also hoping to connect volunteers directly with Board of Directors Committees working on specific goal areas. The Boards needs and capacity to manage volunteers are constantly evolving so please feel free to send an inquiry to the email address below.
Currently the Board of Directors envisions needing assistance with the following skills:
v Social media outreach
v Newsletter production
v Traditional media outreach such as Letters to the Editor
v Grant writing/prospecting
If working with BIC leadership on any of the above areas is of interest to you, please fill out a volunteer form and confidentiality agreement (links below) and send it to: Board@berkshireic.com. You may also send inquiries about becoming more involved with the Board and leadership to this address. We will get back to you in January 2017, once we have a more robust volunteer program in place.
At the Office
BIC Volunteers are currently involved in the following ways at the Center:
- acting as interns and providing office support, doing traditional clerical work, data entry and helping to type client applications
- supporting fundraising efforts either on committees, our Board, or planning and executing events
- helping maintain the free clothing boutique
- translating documents and client communications remotely (mostly Spanish to English) to assist the Center and help raise funds through our “translation project”
*The following activities are on a case by case basis and we do not always have clients in need of these services
- may assist clients to prepare for naturalization exams, transport them to appointments or accompany them to access important community resources (we occasionally attempt to pair a client and a volunteer for a period of time)
- language skills; may help occasionally translate or interpret for immigrants especially in less common languages
- may assist clients in picking up furniture or assist BIC in picking up donations for our tag sales
Right now what we really, really need is help in our gently used clothing boutique. Our upstairs storage room if full of bags of clothes waiting to be put out and given a new home. They need to be sorted and boxed and the room needs to be set up so clients can easily access what they are looking for. We have a lot of great clothes for free and a lot of needy families who can use them, but unless we can organize and display, no one can get them. This is especially important in the cooler weather. The work can be done over time but there are probably 6 hours plus of work currently and the clothing needs biweekly maintenance.
Additionally, we could always use help with fundraising if volunteers wanted to try to organize an activity or event to draw awareness to the Center’s work and collect some funds to support it.
Finally, we receive more requests for tabling and presenting briefly about the Center than we can provide. It is our dream to train volunteers to be speakers to help with outreach efforts and spreading the word about our valuable immigrant community.
The more specific you can be about how you would like to contribute the better. We might not have a job that fits your skills right now, but please share your thoughts and fill out our form (if you have not already done so) and we will go from there!
All volunteers share a commitment to improving the lives of immigrants who live in Berkshire County. We expect a level of professionalism that requires responsible attendance and confidentiality. Volunteers may have a regular weekly schedule or work on an as-needed basis.
In order to figure out whether volunteering here is a good fit for you and us, we ask you to be as detailed as possible about times you are available ie: days of week you can be here, if you can work weekly, bi-weekly, for how long/times, etc. Our office hours are Monday through Thursday from 9-3pm, so most of our current opportunities have to take place during those hours. We often ask that our volunteers make a minimum 2-3 month commitment to our organization.
Again, we hope to launch a more robust program in early 2017. If what we have available currently is not a good fit, please feel free to try us in the future as our needs and opportunities are always evolving!
If you are interested in IN-OFFICE support please send Janie@berkshireic.com a detailed email along with volunteer application and conflict of interested confidentiality agreement.
Thank you very, very much for your interest and support!!