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We’d Love to Work with You!

It takes a village to raise a child, but first, you need to build the village! Whatever skills you have to lend, or time you have to spare, there are families who need them. It takes very little time to make a big difference in someone’s life!

  • Help refugee children improve their English and complete homework
  • Help adult refugees learn English, computer skills, and prepare for the HiSET (GED)
  • Assist with donation drives
  • Help refugees apply for ‘green cards’ so they can work
  • Transport refugees to appointments and resource centers
  • Help write grants, plan events, and fundraise
  • Perform basic clerical tasks – filing, data entry, correspondence
  • Help publicize EMBARC

To volunteer please fill out our full application. If you have any questions about volunteering, please contact our volunteer coordinator at volunteer@embarciowa.org

Current Volunteer Opportunities

Des Moines Office:

Walk-In “Clinic”
During the clinic, refugee clients come to receive assistance filling out paperwork, reading mail, making phone calls and handling other day-to-day tasks. Volunteer are needed to assist clients with reviewing documents, making phone calls, and any other daily task that may occur. This occurs at Vineyard Church Monday from 1-4 pm and Friday from 10 am – 1 pm. 

Community-Based English as a Second Language (CBESL):  These classes are held for adult members of the refugee community who wish to learn or improve their English skills. Volunteers are asked to come to at least one class a week to assist the teacher and the students with their learning, creating a more 1:1 environment.

The individual mentoring program pairs an individual from Burma with an individual from America to assist the mentee with any goals they may have. This program is perfect for someone who has a flexible schedule and who is willing to commit to a year-long, meaningful program working in a one-on-one environment.  

Family Mentoring Program(FISH):
The family mentoring program (called “FISH”) is designed for American families to be paired with families from Burma. This partnership may participate in English practice in the home and other long-term goals involving the whole family system. This program is perfect for someone who has a flexible schedule and who is willing to commit to a year-long, meaningful program.

Waterloo Office:

Client Advocate:
Work directly with a family from Burma to advocate for them by helping with medical appointments. This includes transporting clients to appointments, advocating for clients by ensuring interpretation is available, scheduling follow up appointments as needed, and building professional and supportive relationships with clients.

On Call Transportation:
Many community members from Burma cannot drive or do not have a car. As an on-call transportation volunteer, EMBARC would call you when transportation is needed and you can let us know if you’re available or not during that time.

Working with adult members of the Refugee community on goals including passing the naturalization citizenship exam, learning and improving English skills, preparing for entering the workforce, and preparing for higher education. All of the mentoring tracts are partnered with direct support from EMBARC. Mentors would meet one on one, once a week with a community member.

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