Human Services Volunteer

Name of agency and statement of purpose:  The Karen Organization of Minnesota’s (KOM) mission is to enhance the quality of life for Karen and other refugees from Burma in Minnesota by assisting refugees to settle, integrate and become increasingly self-sufficient while fostering cultural knowledge and understanding.

Title: Human Services Volunteer

Purpose/objective: Our Refugee Employment Services (RES) and Refugee Social Services (RSS) teams assist clients with job placement, access to health care, secondary resettlement support, and other services. The human services volunteer will provide support to employment counselors and social services coordinators with these services.

Key Responsibilities:

Shadow KOM employment counselors and social services coordinators in the following activities…

  • Connect clients with community services such as medical care, mental health services, child care, school enrollment, public assistance, and other programs
  • Complete intake and assessment forms to determine clients’ eligibility for services
  • Provide walk-in services for refugees to address needs including translation/interpreting, completing paperwork, and contacting other agencies for referrals and follow-up

Time commitment: Available at least one day per week for 2-4 hours (anytime Monday – Friday from 8:30am – 5:00pm) (Walk-in hours are Monday, Wednesday, Thursday 8:30am-12:30pm and 1-4pm, and Tuesdays 1-4pm)

Location: KOM Office

Qualifications: Currently studying sociology or human services. Ability to speak, read, and write fluently in English, and Sgaw Karen and/or Pwo Karen. Additional language abilities (Karenni, Burmese, Mon, Thai) are a plus.

Benefits: This position offers an excellent opportunity to learn about refugee resettlement issues and the broad network of services available to refugees in Minnesota. The human services volunteer will gain experience in case management, interpreting/translating, and client advocacy while helping refugees from Burma access resources to meet their needs and become independent.

How to apply/contact: Please complete KOM’s Volunteer Application online or contact Suzanne Olive to receive a paper application. Volunteers will attend a meeting to discuss their interest in being a human services volunteer and be subject to a background check.

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