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Don't Walk By is an annual winter outreach to men and women experiencing homelessness in New York City. We send out volunteers in teams to blanket the streets, subway lines, and commuter centers in Manhattan in search those who are in need of help. As outreach teams meet folks on the street, we invite them back to an Anchor Church, where guests are offered a hot meal, clothing, basic medical care, and an invitation to an alternative life.
Each volunteer will be assigned to a team with a specific role and assigned area to cover. Below, you’ll find the various volunteer roles and the requirements to serve in those roles. Please read carefully.
DWB 2017 will be held on all Saturdays in February at four different locations. If you plan to participate in more than one event, you will need to register separately for each event.
- Feb 4 - Westside Outreach (Calvary Baptist Church: 123 W.57th St, 10019)
- Feb 11 – Eastside Outreach (Fifth Avenue Presbyterian Church: 7 W.55th St, 10019)
- Feb 18 – Downtown Outreach (New York Chinese Alliance Church: 162 Eldridge St, 10002)
- Feb 25 – Uptown Outreach (Salvation Army Harlem Temple: 540 Lenox Ave, 10037)
TYPES OF VOLUNTEERS
1. Team Leaders
The team leader manages and takes responsibility for a group of volunteers in key areas of the outreach event. They lead others as we serve our neighbors in need. Team leaders also stay in constant communication with Don’t Walk By staff.
Team leaders in street engagement lead groups in praying and initiating conversations with homeless individuals in assigned areas of Manhattan. Team leaders in subway engagement lead volunteer initiating conversations with homeless individuals in subways. Hospitality team leaders coordinate the guest experience at the anchor church.
- Leads a team of either Street Engagement, Subway Engagement, or Hospitality volunteers
- Street or Subway team leaders leads an assigned team through and assigned subzone or train line.
- Hospitality team leaders assigned an area in hospitality (i.e. greeter, table host, runner, monitor)
- Responsible for the team assigned to you
- Responsible to enable your team to carry out the duties assigned to your area within the framing of the vision and mission of Don’t Walk By.
- 21 years of age or older
- A follower of Christ.
- Must attend ONE of the following set training sessions held at Hope for NY Office (1166 Ave of the Americas Suite 1610)
- Tues Jan 17 - 6pm-9pm
- Thurs Jan 19 - 6pm-9pm
- Should be comfortable serving homeless populations and helping to lead others in doing so. If you’re not sure what your comfort level is, please sign up for a weekly Don’t Walk By through New York City Relief.
- Be flexible as things don’t always go smoothly.
- For street & Subway: Ability to walk in possible inclement weather for about 3 hours.
- For Hospitality: friendly, ability to engage guests in conversation and stay calm under chaotic conditions
- Your priorities are:
- To ensure the safety of your team
- To be prepared from training and know all the material you are given
- Delegate to your team – give out assignments and tasks
- Help keep the morale of your team up by encouraging and reminding them of the mission and greater goal
- Keep the team on its mission and cover your assigned zone/area.
- For street/subway team leaders, be the contact person for transportation.
2. Street Engagement
Street Engagement Volunteers walk the streets of Manhattan praying and looking for individuals in need, initiating conversations, and inviting guests back to the anchor church.
- Walks approximately 10×10 block radius your assigned team on a search and rescue mission to find the homeless
- 18 yrs or older
- Ability to walk in possible inclement weather for about 3 hours.
- Ability to follow the lead of your assigned team leader.
3. Subway Engagement
Subway engagement volunteers search specific subway stations and train line for individuals in need, initiating conversation and inviting guests back to the anchor church.
- Rides a subway line / or walks the subway platforms and stations (at your team leader’s direction) with team on search and rescue mission to find the homeless.
- 18 yrs old or older
- Have a personal Metrocard to use (we are unable to provide these for you)
4. Hospitality Volunteer
Hospitality volunteers serve in various roles serving guests at the anchor church with compassion and love.
- You will serve at the anchor church to provide a smile, meal, clothing, medical treatment, resources, and more to the homeless guests that arrive off the streets. Specific assignments will be given at training / orientation.
- There will be 100% engagement with the population we are trying to engage with. You should be prepared to smile, converse with, be helpful to, and serve with joy.
- Prayer Team is part of Hospitality - we will have a prayer station but encourage you to go around to ask guests if they would like prayer.
5. Medical Professionals
Medical professionals work with guests at the anchor church providing basic medical care like checking blood pressure.
- We need 4 of each: Medical doctors, registered nurses, physician assistants, and nurse practitioners.
If you are medical student, counselor, or other medical professional, please sign up as a hospitality volunteer and note your specialty.
The transportation team drives guests to the anchor church from the place where street or subway engagement teams met them. Transportation vehicles also help transport volunteers to their assigned zones and take guests to overnight shelter.
- We always need more vans to help with transportation during the outreach. If your church/family/organization has a van, minivan, and can offer a driver, we could use it.
- Works at the anchor church to provide a smile, meal, clothing, medical treatment, resources, and more to the homeless guests that arrive off the streets. Specific assignments will be given at training orientation.
- Must be at least 16 yrs old
You are welcome to register for multiple Saturdays of outreach. However, it is only possible to sign up for ONE role per Saturday. If you sign up to be a team leader, we would love if you could be a team leader for multiple Saturdays if possible.
SERVING TOGETHER AS A GROUP/TEAM
We welcome anyone who would like to sign up with a church, community group, or a group of friends. To ensure that your team will be together, please make sure you have 6-8 people in your team, a designated team leader who will attend the team leader training, and no more than 4 males OR 4 females per team.
As a group (of 6-8 people, age 18+), decide on an outreach date to volunteer. Then determine:
- Street or Subway?
Determine if your group will be doing Street or Subway Engagement and inform all team members to select this choice when registering. For every 3-4 people you MUST have one team leader. This year, for street teams, 2 groups of 4 will be in one subzone.
- Choose a Team Name and a Team Leader(s)
Choose a team name and designate a team leader (age 21+) who will attend a mandatory team leader training – one leader for every 3-4 people.
- Male and Female members.
Make sure you have a mix of males and females in your group. We will not accept all male or all female teams for safety reasons.
- Register individually.
Each person on your team will still need to register individually but enter in the team name that you have determined together ahead of time. If there are multiple teams from the same church, please create unique team names.
Please make note:
- While group affiliations are taken into account when assigning outreach teams, we assign teams with specific safety constraints in mind and to best serve our homeless neighbors. We recommend having 1 team leader for every 3-4 people in your group. We will assign your team to a specific subzone to walk. You may be placed on another team than your choosing, so we thank you in advance for your graciousness and flexibility!
- If you do not have a group of at least 4 and would like to be grouped with another person, please list their name when you register. We will do our best to honor those requests.
If you are unable to attend on the day you registered for, please edit your registration and/or send an email to email@example.com .
Check the Don’t Walk By Outreach Overview page for answers to frequently asked questions. Please visit the Don't Walk By website for more details. If you have further questions, please email firstname.lastname@example.org .
TEAM LEADER TRAINING
All team leaders must register to attend ONE of the following team leader trainings. When you register as a team leader, you will be prompted to select a training date. If you cannot make the team leader training dates, please contact email@example.com
Training Dates & Times (pizza dinner will be provided):
- Tues Jan 17 - 6pm-9pm
- Thurs Jan 19 - 6pm-9pm
Training location: Hope For NY Office – 1166 Avenue of the Americas, Suite 1610 (enter on 45th OR 46th St). You will need to bring ID to enter the building.