“He has shown you, O man, what is good. And what does the Lord require of you? To act justly and to love mercy and to walk humbly with your God.” Micah 6:8
As volunteers, we are a reflection of God’s love to those in our care and we take our responsibility seriously. We need to take all the measures we can to help our clients feel safe and to protect them from abuse. We also need safety measures in place in order to protect ourselves against abuse as volunteers.
The following guidelines serve to protect our clients and our volunteers:
Vulnerable Adult Protection Procedures
- Volunteer / client ratios
> There must be always at least two volunteers on duty and present at the trailer during operation. It is preferable to have three or four volunteers on duty on any given use
> Record must be kept of volunteer attendance.
>Observers or visitors who have not been screened are not allowed to assist in the program
- Volunteer Identification
> Volunteers are clearly identified with a nametag or approved clothing which identifies them to clients and observers
- Client Registration
> All clients who use the showers must sign the liability waiver PRIOR to using the shower.
>This is also used as a record of attendance
> The client liability forms must be kept permanently
- Health and Safety Guidelines
> Volunteers are encouraged to become certified and trained in first aid. Please give a copy of your certification to your director. Our goal is to have one person trained in first aid on duty at all times.
>A first aid kit will be kept in the truck at all times.
>Dealing with injuries involving blood
- Ensure no one else has contact with the exposed injury or the blood on any surface until the wound is covered and the surface disinfected
- Make sure gloves are worn when bandaging the injury
- Use extreme care in protecting yourself from direct contact
> Naloxone training is also highly recommended. Training will be offered periodically
> Cleaning/ disinfecting the surfaces of the showers between clients is mandatory.
> Warn clients about danger of slipping on wet surfaces
- Proper Volunteer Behavioral Guidelines
> Refrain from touching clients at all. Care and concern can be shown by giving clients our attention and kind words.
>No hugging or touching any area of a client’s body, especially areas that are covered by a bathing suit.
> Volunteers are NEVER to be alone with a client in a closed room, ie. shower stall
>Never raise your voice, use questionable language, or shout at a client
>Never behave in such a way that could be seen as flirting
> Never take a client in your vehicle. If it is necessary to give transportation to someone for some reason, two volunteers must be present at all times.
>Never give a client your personal information (address, phone number, etc)
- Managing Client Behavior
> Create a loving, caring atmosphere
> to gain respect, you must grant respect. Every person deserves to be treated with dignity
>Managing escalating behavior
- First priority is to ensure safety of all involved. You may have to clear the area of other clients and volunteers may need to give the escalating client more space.
- Alert the host supervisor to the potential problem
- Avoid power struggles
- Limit emotionally charged responses
- Avoid threats, ultimatums, or excessive restrictions
- Remain matter-of-fact and neutral
- Give realistically available choices as often as possible
- Plan for unpredictability
- Keep directions short and simple
- Don’t argue
- Say “you’re right” as much as possible
- Approach slowly with non-threatening body language
- Ask them what they need
- Don’t contradict or argue about their beliefs
- Keep stimulus low in the environment
For insurance purposes you will be required to have a Criminal Check Vulnerable Sector search every 5 years.
Applications for the Criminal Check are found on the Abbotsford police website. You may apply online or in person at the Abbotsford Police station.
For more information go to:
To download the application form go to:
Presently, to cost is $27 for volunteer positions. Your receipt can be submitted along with your results for reimbursement.
Once you have received the results, please give a copy to one of the committee (Henry, Anna or Janet)
All Volunteers are required to fill out an application form for this ministry.
Your application will be kept in a secure location and on file permanently
Confidentiality can be a life or death issue for people who are homeless. As a volunteer of the Refresh Mobile Shower Ministry Program, you agree to hold information regarding people you encounter while volunteering and their condition in confidence. This includes not sharing camp locations. Conversations about individuals being served and their situations, without their consent are violations of the trust, respect and privacy to which they are entitled.
• Do not share your personal contact information with individuals being served (address, phone number, email)
• Do not transport individuals being served in your personal vehicle.
• Connecting and building healthy wholesome relationships between volunteers and individuals being served is encouraged. It is important that these relationships be developed carefully and respectfully, recognizing that many individuals being served are emotionally, socially, spiritually, and physically vulnerable. With this in mind, please do not visit camp locations outside of Refresh Mobile Shower Ministry events.