Becoming a FriendshipWorks volunteer is one of the most rewarding things you can do. Volunteers are critical to helping address the serious health risks posed by social isolation in the elder community. These risks include accelerated brain and cardiovascular aging. We welcome volunteers of all ages, faiths, immigration status, and backgrounds! Help us make matches that create connections, lead to friendships, and reduce isolation, one elder at a time. By doing so, you are rewarded with a rich one-on-one relationship.  The beauty is in both the giving and receiving at FriendshipWorks.


What’s the process for becoming a volunteer?

  • Complete and submit the volunteer application online 
  • You will be contacted by a FriendshipWorks staff member to confirm your interest, availability, and arrange an interview.  (Please Make sure to check your spam folder for any communication.)
  • Schedule an interview 
  • Review and complete paperwork, including a CORI background check
  • Attend a volunteer program training
  • If you want to volunteer with your pet, your pet will also need to pass our scheduled screening with an animal behaviorist and fill out our PetPals Volunteer Application. See PetPals below.

Who’s eligible to volunteer?

  • Anyone 18+
  • Must pass a CORI background check
  • Be willing to make a minimum of a 6-12 month commitment depending on the program  (see below)
  • Have flexible hours of service but some programs require weekday availability (see below)
  • No car is needed

What happens after I’ve been screened and attended a training?

You will be matched with an elder.   

  • Matches for Medical Escort and Friendly Helping become available quickly. Your program coordinator will contact you directly with specific opportunities shortly after you complete the training process.
  • For Friendly Visiting, you can expect a match within 2-6 weeks. Matches are based on geography, availability, and the interests and preferences of both the elder and the volunteer. You and a FriendshipWorks staff member will attend the first visit to your elder together.
  • Screening of pets is held quarterly for the PetPals program. Matches will be made following the pet screening. A PetPals liaison at your placement will meet you on your first visit to a facility.  

What volunteer opportunities are available?

Which FriendshipWorks volunteer opportunity is right for you? Below is a summary of our opportunities.  More information is also available on our Program tab. Find out which opportunity might be right for you and then fill out a volunteer application!

Friendly Visiting:

  • What it involves: Visiting with an elder friend for conversation, shared experience, and companionship.  
  • Time commitment: 1 or 2 hours per week for at least 8-9 months.
  • Availability needed:   Flexible hours based on you and your elder’s schedules.
  • Skills needed: A desire to help out and make a new friend!  Opportunities are also available for Spanish speakers and other languages as needed.
  • Click here to learn more!

Medical Escorts:

  • What it involves: Accompanying an elder to a medical appointment, providing emotional and light physical support along the way. Meet the elder at the designated location. Then, accompany the elder to a medical appointment to provide emotional and light physical support along the way. Transportation from the elder’s home to the appointment must be provided or arranged by the elder. 
  • Time commitment: This is flexible and can be tailored around the volunteer’s availability.  We ask volunteers for at least a 6-month commitment.
  • Availability needed: Weekday business hours.  Usually, a 3-hour block of time is needed for door-to-door medical escorts.
  • Skills needed: A compassionate personality and a desire to help. A car is not required. Opportunities are also available for Spanish speakers and other languages as needed.
  • Click here to learn more!

Friendly Helping:

  • What it involves: Provide short-term or one-time assistance to elders with a specific need or task.
  • Time commitment: 1-3 hours per task.  We ask volunteers to commit to 3 “helps” during a 6-month period.
  • Availability needed: Flexible and can be based around the volunteer’s schedule.
  • Skills needed: Compassion and a willingness to help elders. A car is not required. Opportunities are also available for Spanish speakers and other languages as needed.
  • Click here to learn more!

PetPals:

  • What it involves: Visiting a nursing home or assisted-living building with your pet.
  • Time commitment: Weekly visits for at least an 8-9 month commitment.
  • Availability needed:   Flexible and can be based around the volunteer’s schedule.
  • Skills needed: Must have a sociable dog or cat that would enjoy regular visits with strangers.
  • Click here to learn more!

MusicWorks:

  • What it involves: Assist in the preparation and operation of older adult groups centered around music or music-related activities.
  • Time commitment: Usually, one hour per week or biweekly for at least 6 months.
  • Availability needed:   MusicWorks groups are held weekdays, during the morning or afternoon.   
  • Skills needed: A desire to help and make new friends! Opportunities are also available for Spanish speakers and other languages as needed.
  • Click here to learn more!

Relaxing with the Arts:

  • What it involves: Visiting with elder friends to share relaxing art activities.
  • Time commitment: Once-a-month for 2 hours during the week.
  • Availability needed:  Groups are scheduled weekdays, usually in the afternoons.
  • Skills needed: Interest in arts-related activities a plus!