Program Volunteer Training
You Can Make A Difference
Become a CaringMatters Volunteer
General Training for New Volunteers
Upcoming Training: February 27, 28 and 29, 2024
9:00am - 4:00pm each day
CaringMatters, 518 S. Frederick Ave., Gaithersburg, MD 20877
As our community faces more complicated illness and unprecedented loss, the needs for CaringMatters' compassionate support services continue to grow. You can make a difference! Register now for our interactive and impactful three-day training for program volunteers, offered at no charge.
Through interactive presentations and discussions, and guided exercises, the CaringMatters team presents a broad range of information and skill-building instruction to new volunteers that prepares them to be one-on-one caregivers and bereavement facilitators. The training includes topics such as serious illness, caregiving, hospice care, death and dying, grief, communication, nursing homes, advance directives, and more. CaringMatters’ patient & family support and bereavement programs, as well as volunteer responsibilities and self-care, are also reviewed in detail.
Volunteers are the heart of CaringMatters. In order to responsibly serve patients and the bereaved, every volunteer who works directly with clients must complete a three-day (9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.) introductory training session, which is often described by graduates as a "transformative experience."
Because of the interaction volunteers have with clients, necessary background checks, paperwork and other items that must be completed before attending the New Volunteer Training. These requirements include:
21 years of age or older
Consenting to a background check (no cost to volunteer trainee)
Fully vaccinated against Covid-19
Attending an informal interview with Penny Gladhill, Director of Volunteer Helping Hands and co-founder of CaringMatters
After the three day training, specific program volunteers are required to complete additional training. Requirements for each program are detailed below.
Ability to meet with your clients in person
Complete TB test
Provide driver’s license and car insurance
Additional two days of specialized training, offered each summer
Ability to meet in person
Flexible weekday availability
Adult Bereavement Group Facilitators:
Additional one day of specialized training, offered a few times throughout the year
Technology, wifi and skills to utilize Zoom (for virtual groups)
Ability to meet in person
Reliable transportation (for in-person groups)
Availability weekly on either weekday afternoons or evenings
Please Note: For Adult Bereavement volunteers, there are several new opportunities for facilitating grief support groups as we expand our services to meet the growing needs of the community. Working with grieving persons with an experienced co-facilitator will be one of the most fulfilling experiences of your life. After completing the three-day training, you are eligible to participate in an additional training for Adult Bereavement. If you are interested in this training, email Brandon Brewer at firstname.lastname@example.org with you name, phone number and dates/times you can be reached to discuss this opportunity.
We have a strong need for volunteers who are bilingual and multi-cultural, as well as those from the Silver Spring/Down County area due to increased requests for compassionate support services.
Quotes from our Volunteer Training participants:
"I found that the training was done in the spirit of the patient first. This touched my heart and nothing better could be said. Thank you."
"We have not even started our volunteering, but I already feel part of a warm, warm family."
"I used to be a training coordinator for a for-profit training organization...All I can say is this training has been the best that I have ever had contact with. Very professional, informative and entertaining. Don't change a thing!"
How You Can Help
Provide caregiving and compassionate support to those facing serious illness or end-of-life and their families.
Train and serve as a facilitator for bereavement groups, which offer grieving individuals an emotionally safe place to gently begin the healing process.
Co-facilitate a peer support group with a school counselor for children in grades K-12 to discuss their feelings about the death of a loved one and develop coping skills.
Train and serve as a “Big Buddy” at Camp Erin, a weekend grief camp for a children who have recently experienced the death of a loved one.
Assist with administrative tasks, help organize fundraising and community education events and volunteer at community resource fairs.
"Be the change you wish to see in the world."
- Mahatma Gandhi