Volunteer Programs

Introduction

Welcome to the Volunteer Program of Brain Injury Services. BIS’ volunteer program was developed initially out of funding provided by the State Legislature through a Budget Amendment and the Philip Graham Fund. It was established to develop a unique, in-house model that focuses on individualized services that contribute to the success of our clients in finding meaningful and productive activities, either with volunteers or by volunteering themselves in the community. Over the years, the volunteer program has strived to create programs that fill the gaps in service that exist for survivors of brain injury and has developed programs that speak to these needs.

1. Speaker’s Bureau

Would you like to tell your story and inspire others? The award winning speaker’s bureau offers this opportunity for the client to tell his/her story while motivating audiences. They meet every other month and with assistance as needed, develop speeches, practice with one another and present at various venues, including nursing homes, universities, rehab centers, hospitals, etc.

2. PALS (Providing A Link for Survivors)

The goal of the PALS program is to engage in a mutually enriching friendship between a community volunteer and a client of Brain Injury Services. The hope is to socialize in the community and rebuild social skills through friendship. PALS make a one year commitment to see one another at least once a month one on one, preferably in the community, while maintaining regular communication.

3. Person-Centered Volunteering

This program offers the opportunity to build a friendship through goal oriented activities as decided by the clients. Any goals or activities that are difficult for the client to reach on their own due to their brain injuries could be feasible for this program, based on volunteer availability. Case managers and the Director of Volunteer Programs help the clients identify goals that work within a six month time period with the volunteers. Volunteers meet with clients every week or every other week depending on the goal. Goals could include gardening, cooking, computer skills, exercise, etc. Again, referrals are received from case managers of active BIS clients and then assessed for eligibility in the program by the Director of Community Engagement.

Eligibility

Clients: The volunteer programs serve the social, rehabilitative and recreational needs of our clients. Clients are referred to volunteer programs through their Case Manager.

Community Volunteer: Please contact Michelle Thyen, Director of Community Engagement, at mthyen@braininjurysvcs.org or 703-451-8881, ext.232 to learn more. If you are a Brain Injury Services’ client please contact your Case Manager.

Fee

Volunteer Program services are provided at no cost to the individual.

Referral

Clients should be referred to Volunteer Programs by their Case Manager. Community members interested in volunteering should contact Michelle Thyen, Director of Community Engagement at 703-451-8881, ext. 232.

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