Frequently Asked Questions

Frequently Asked Questions
What are your volunteer hours?

The majority of our volunteer opportunities occur Monday through Friday between 9:00am and 5:00pm except during holidays.

Do you offer evening volunteer sessions?

If your organization or group is interested in volunteering in the evening, contact the volunteer coordinator at 507-452-5591 to discuss possible volunteer opportunities.

What are your age requirements?

For safety purposes, the minimum age for an unaccompanied individual volunteer is 16 years old. If volunteering as a group with an accompanying adult, we will allow volunteers as young as 8 years old depending on the type of task the group is assigned.

Do I need to make an appointment to volunteer or can I walk- in?

Individuals interested in volunteering must complete our online Volunteer Interest Form. If the individual does not have access to a computer, the individual can stop in or WVS staff can mail a copy of the form upon request. Please call (507) 452-5591 to request a Volunteer Interest Form for individuals.

What should I wear?

We expect all volunteers to arrive to volunteer with good hygiene and well groomed. Volunteers should dress appropriately for the conditions in which they volunteer in. We suggest you dress in layers so you can take off or add on clothing to adjust to your comfort level. Volunteers need to wear closed-toed shoes. Flip flops, extremely short skirts/shorts or low cut shirts are not allowed.

What will I be doing?

That depends on your availability, talents and area of interest which will be determined during the placement interview with the Volunteer Coordinator. Once assigned to a position, instructions, training and follow-up will be provided.

Where do I park?

Park in any available spots in front of the 402 East Second Street building or on Second or Chestnut streets. We ask that you do not park in the main parking lot between the office/food shelf building and The Clothes Shop building. These spaces are reserved for our customers.

When I get there where do I report?

All volunteers are asked to report to the Volunteer Coordinator for their first shift. Use the Office entrance which is located in the 402 East Second Street building.

Do I need to sign in?

Yes, each volunteer needs to sign in when they volunteer at Winona Volunteer Services. Sign-in sheets are available in your assigned work area.

Does Winona Volunteer Services provide proof of volunteer service?

Yes. Upon request, the Volunteer Coordinator will provide volunteers with a dated letter indicating the dates and number of hours volunteered. The Volunteer Coordinator or available staff will sign any school/church/community service forms when needed.

Does Winona Volunteer Services keep track of volunteer hours?

Yes. The Volunteer Coordinator keeps accurate records of all volunteer hours. We are not responsible if volunteers do not sign in and out or do not provide accurate or complete information.

What types of volunteer opportunities are available for groups or families at WVS?

– Food Sorting/Stocking after the major food drives
– Clothes Shop Sorting/Hanging
– Clothes Shop changeover activities

What types of volunteer opportunities are available for groups or families away from WVS?

– Volunteering for the Easter Dinner on Easter Sunday either delivering meals or helping serve the meals.
– Coordinating a food drive
– Coordinating a clothing drive

When bringing groups of youth, do you have requirements for chaperones?

Yes, youth groups must provide adult supervision. Due to safety concerns, children 8 -15 may volunteer only with adult supervision. For youth groups (12 – 15 years old) one adult is required for every six youths. For youth groups (8 – 11 years old) one adult for for every four youths is required. Please be sure accompanying adults understand they will be helping to supervise the group.

If I need to cancel or if the number of volunteers in my group changes, do I need to call WVS?

Yes, it is important that you let the Volunteer Coordinator know if you need to cancel, if your number of volunteers increase or if your number of volunteers decreases. WVS uses a daily volunteer work force and schedules according to its needs. An increase or decrease in the number of your volunteers can affect the volunteer session.

What is Winona Volunteer Services policy on volunteers who are assigned court ordered community service hours?

Individuals who receive a court order or a school mandate to perform community service are accepted on a case by case basis. Individuals convicted of certain serious charges will not be accepted to volunteer due to potential safety risks for other volunteers and staff.

Can I donate food or money in lieu of community service hours?

That is fine with WVS but requires the pre-approval of the court or probation services.

With a name like Winona Volunteer Services, are you a Volunteer Resource Center?

No, we do not place volunteers with other organizations in the community. We recruit and train volunteers to assist us in fulfilling our agency’s mission.

Am I guaranteed a volunteer slot at WVS once I submit my prescreening application?

No. Volunteers must complete the steps to volunteer. After the placement interview, the Volunteer Coordinator may accept or deny your application to volunteer. If your application is denied, we will contact you to let you know the reason for denial. If accepted, the Volunteer Coordinator will set your schedule to start training.

What is Winona Volunteer Services policy on volunteers who are “required” to volunteer because they receive certain types of government benefits?

Individuals who are required to volunteer in order to receive certain types of government benefits like welfare, public housing, unemployment benefit, etc. can apply  to volunteer by filling out the Volunteer Interest Form online and following the steps to volunteer.

What is a Service Enterprise Organization?
SE Certification Seal 2021-2024
What is a Service Enterprise Organization?

As a Service Enterprise organization we aim to strategically leverage the skill and talents of our volunteers. By engaging volunteers effectively we can serve more people in the community and further the agencies mission “with dedicated volunteers and partners, we help people address life’s challenges in a respectful and dignified manner”.