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The Alliance is seeking volunteers to join their team as the organization expands its services to move people beyond domestic and sexual violence.

“We’ve used volunteers for nearly 40 years at The Alliance to ensure that we can provide free, confidential, 24/7 advocacy services,” said Executive Director Shelley Schreiner. “Now, as we continue to innovate and adapt our services to meet the needs of our ever-changing environment, we need to enlist the help of committed, passionate community members to help us respond to and prevent domestic and sexual violence.”

Image/Courtesy of The Alliance

The agency, which serves Chaffee County as well as northern Saguache and western Fremont counties, has a 24/7 crisis line that is staffed heavily by well-trained volunteers. In the wake of COVID-19, The Alliance has expanded virtual options for accessing their services, including a text message crisis line that is available from 8:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. and a chat feature on their website which allows clients to seek help without the risk of being overheard.

Over the past year, the organization has served roughly 600 individuals.

The training to volunteer on the crisis line or the text and chat lines involves 30 hours of domestic and sexual violence education. Once volunteers complete training, they can choose from a range of time commitments – from short shifts handling the chat or text line to covering the front desk at the office for a full day, to staffing the crisis line for a full weekend.

“We’re delighted that by expanding access to our services by offering virtual options, we’ve also made volunteering more accessible for folks who want to help out but don’t have the time to commit to a full weekend of phone coverage,” Schreiner said.

There are also several non-advocacy opportunities for volunteering. From conducting outreach and education activities within the community to lawn maintenance at confidential safe house locations, there are many ways that the community can contribute.

“We have the best volunteers,” said Debbie Quintana, The Alliance’s Volunteer Coordinator. “We really couldn’t do it without them.”

A full-day, in-person training for prospective volunteers will be held Saturday, April 17. The remainder of the course is online, and it can be started prior to the all-day session once a person is registered for the training. Quintana said that people can attend the in-person training to see if they are a good fit for the program, then complete the online training afterward. People who volunteer on the crisis line need to be at least 18.

For more information, or to register for the training, interested parties should visit the Alliance’s volunteer page here or call 719-539-7347 and ask for Debbie.