Volunteer with Gracewood
Gracewood needs you! Giving back to others can be one of the most rewarding things you have ever done. We really appreciate our volunteers who help improve the quality of life for all of our children, single mothers, and families. Gracewood counts on friends, volunteers, donors, and other supporters to help meet the needs of children and families in care.
For more information, please contact our office at 713-988-9757. Please note that background checks will be required for all volunteers interacting with children.
No. Under state law (DFPS Minimum Standards for General Residential Operations 748.731) “a person that is not being compensated may not provide services to an operation, if that person is on probation or parole, or is referred for community services through the courts because of criminal activity, including as an alternative to incarceration. This probation applies even if the services do not involve contact with children in care."
Some volunteer activities will be identified as “family friendly” and children are welcome. Other activities may not be appropriate for children under the age of 16. When in doubt, check with the ministry’s volunteer coordinator. We do not provide child care for volunteers.
Opportunities to interact with children are very limited, for a variety of reasons. Under state law, a full background check is required before a volunteer can have contact with children. Even if a background check is completed, we place the interests of the child above all else. Not every child will welcome a volunteer’s efforts, no matter how well-meant. In addition, there often are privacy and confidentiality issues, which will vary from child to child.
There is no age limit, although we ask that teenagers be accompanied by an adult at all times. Opportunities for those age 12 and under are limited to activities identified as “family friendly.”
The opportunities to volunteer vary widely across our family of ministries, but we can’t always accommodate every person who wishes to volunteer. For instance, there aren’t going to be many opportunities for an individual who wants to read to children or play games with them. Keep in mind that our goal is to give children in our care as much of a normal childhood as possible. We don’t want them to feel like they are on display.