Each year, we welcome full-time, service-year volunteers who commit to a year of service with us. They offer their gifts to our community, while deepening both their capacity to serve and their understanding of the social justice issues we grapple with.
They serve as compassionate companions for our residents, providing personal care, accompanying residents to medical appointments and recreational outings, shopping for groceries, preparing meals, and assisting with other tasks in the house. For many, this is their first experience with death and dying and their time at Joseph’s House offers them opportunities to serve and develop deep relationships with individuals at the end of life.
“Joseph’s House is about creating home and supporting relationships. It’s about everything that goes into that: learning to cook for 16 at a setting and putting in the elbow grease to clean the kitchen. It’s about conversation at the table – helping make sure that everyone gets their say – even those who might not be able to speak any more.
It’s about mutual growth in love; serving others and therefore, serving oneself. It’s a home. I’d leave home in the morning and – go home! Joseph’s House nourishes and supports the way a home is supposed to.”
-Peter Vincent, former volunteer
Most of the young people who participate come to us after college and prior to entering a graduate program. Their training and nurturing are central to our mission, as they carry the values and teachings of Joseph’s House back to communities and institutions across the country. Many alumni of the program are now nurses, social workers, chaplains, and doctors with their careers rooted in their service at Joseph’s House.
In order to deepen their immersion in our values, the volunteers participate in a class with our founder Dr. David Hilfiker, which focuses on issues of social inequality and justice, and another with Emily Carton, which focuses on nurturing compassion. The volunteers also meet individually each week with the executive director for mentoring and reflection on their experiences.