Volunteer

Training is required for volunteers in the Visitor and Letter Writing projects. No commitment is required to attend a training – all are welcome to attend and then decide about participation.

  • All those deciding after training to become CWF volunteers must complete a CWF Volunteer Application Form, providing two references.
  • All volunteers must sign and adhere to various organization policies including the maintenance of strict confidentiality and agreeing not to proselytize.
  • All those deciding after training to become visitors must complete volunteer application forms with the program coordinator at the visit location, including agreeing to having a background check.
  • Visitors must complete all required orientation by jail staff and comply with jail rules for the visitation program at all times.

Frequently Asked Questions

When is the next scheduled training?

  • Click on our “Events and Trainings” tab for information.

Where does the visit program operate?

  • CWF visits people detained in the Freeborn County Adult Detention Center (Albert Lea, MN), the Carver County Jail (Chaska, MN) and the Kandiyohi County Jail (Willmar, MN). In Minnesota, ICE also detains people in the Sherburne County jail.

I’m interested in participating but I do not practice any religion. Can I visit or write letters?

  • Absolutely. There is no faith requirement for visitors or to be visited. All visitors are to respect the faith (or no faith) of those they visit.

I only speak English. Can I still visit?

  • Yes. CWF visits with people from around the world. Visitors who speak Spanish, Somali, and other languages are needed, but there is always an English-language conversation.

Visiting and letter-writing isn’t for me, but I still want to help. What can I do?

  • Consider joining the Circle of Compassion–individuals, groups and various faith organizations–which holds in thought and prayer those individuals in detention (always with their permission and only using their first names in order to maintain confidentiality) who have requested to be on the list.
  • Help CWF provide Safe Release to people in the first hours after leaving detention by providing backpacks with essential personal items and gift cards so they can reach their post-release destination with safety and dignity.
  • Support CWF financially so we can provide very modest commissary deposits to people who have less than $10 in their accounts and, depending on the detention center, send specific books occasionally requested by people in detention.

 

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