Frequently Asked Questions Regarding Volunteering at Starting Point
1. Who is qualified to become a Starting Point volunteer?
You are qualified if:
you are 18 years of age or older
you are sensitive to issues of domestic violence/sexual assault
you are open-minded and non-judgmental in your interaction with others you are a good listener
you complete the Starting Point training program for volunteers
2. What do volunteers do at Starting Point?
Volunteers listen, provide emotional support and discuss options with survivors and/ or their
family members. There are many different volunteer opportunities including:
Support Line Advocate: Provide crisis intervention and support to survivors of domestic and sexual
violence on the agency’s 24hour support line. This coverage is provided with the minimal amount of
disruption to the crisis line worker’s life. Workers are provided with pagers and number-blocking
services on their home phone. Shifts are 7a-7p and 7p-7a every day.
Court Advocacy: Advocates provide assistance obtaining protective orders and with other court
appearances. Court advocates need to complete an additional three hours of classroom
training and shadow an experienced court advocate.
Hospital Advocacy: Provide in-person support to survivors of domestic and sexual violence seeking
medical attention at area hospitals and doctor’s offices. Hospital advocates need to complete an
additional six-hours of training.
Shelter Assistance: Trained advocates offer support, information and referrals to women and
children while they stay in our home.
Support Group Facilitation: Facilitate a supportive peer lead forum for survivors to listen or talk
with others dealing with abuse past or present. Facilitators need to complete an additional six
hours of training.
Child Advocacy Center Accompaniment: Advocates provide support to families when a child has been a
victim of a sexual crime. CAC advocates must complete an additional three hours of training.
Outreach advocate: Advocates serve as an ambassador for SP; you will be participating by appearing
at information tables, community events, fundraising events and a number of other activities to
help spread the word about the agency and our services. If you are outgoing,
talkative, and passionate about building a healthy and safe community, this job is for you!
Volunteers are also requested to help in a variety of other ways, including representation at
health fairs, shelter projects (painting, sorting clothes) and fundraising.
If providing direct service isn’t your thing, Starting Point is always recruiting individuals for serve on different committees and board of directors. For more information call 603-447-2494
3. How would I know the right thing to say or do when working with a survivor of domestic
violence or sexual assault?
Starting Point volunteers are provided with extensive training before working with victims. This
training covers a wide range of topics and provides ample opportunity for volunteers to practice
responses to a variety of situations. In-service sessions are presented to all volunteers on a
regular basis to keep them up to date with the latest information needed to assist survivors.
4. Isn’t doing this work too depressing?
Many people fear they’ll be overwhelmed by doing this type of work. Most Starting Point
volunteers find, however, that it is very rewarding to have helped empower someone who is going
through a crisis related to domestic violence or sexual assault. We learn as much about people’s
strength as we do from their pain. Starting Point volunteers have the satisfaction of knowing the
work they’ve done has made a real difference, both in individual lives and in the struggle to end
violence in our society.
Making a commitment to attend training does not mean you need to make a commitment to active
volunteering; you are welcome to attend training and learn more. If you decide that providing
direct services isn’t for you, perhaps you have another skill that will match with a need of
5. How can I get involved?
The first step is to fill out Starting Point’s volunteer application. You will be contacted by
Starting Point’s volunteer coordinator with upcoming training information and to set up an
interview. We could not do all we do with our committed volunteers. Won’t you consider