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CitySERVE Volunteer News and FAQ

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Volunteer News!

Outstanding Volunteer Awards Ceremony
Every year, during National Volunteer Week (sponsored by the Points of Light Foundation, This year, CitySERVE recognized 19 outstanding volunteers at an awards ceremony with the Santa Cruz City Council on Tuesday, April 12, 2016. Many volunteers and their family and friends showed up for the event and participated in a reception with City Council members prior to the presentation of awards. During the ceremony, each volunteer received a certificate, and had their nomination read by a councilmember. It was a wonderful event where our outstanding city volunteers were recognized for their hard work and dedication to the City of Santa Cruz.

Group Shot 2016
2016 National Volunteer Week Outstanding Volunteer Award Recipients

Frequently Asked Questions

How do I become a volunteer?

The first step is to call CitySERVE get an application. If you are interested in a technical or career development volunteer position, it would be helpful if you include a resume. If you are a student or recent graduate who is interested in an internship with the City of Santa Cruz, a resume and statement of interest is required.

What types of volunteer positions are there at the City of Santa Cruz?

We have a huge variety of volunteer positions at the City of Santa Cruz. From ushering at the Santa Cruz Civic to volunteer computer instructors for the Downtown Seniors program, we have volunteer positions for a variety of interests. Check out the Open Volunteer Positions to see where we especially need help right now. We also offer a variety of student internships and can plan group volunteer projects.

What if I am unsure about what volunteer position is right for me?

E-mail or Call the Volunteer Coordinator at 420-5403. We will do our best to find you a rewarding place to volunteer.

How many hours will I be expected to volunteer?

Time commitment and schedule depends upon the volunteer position you are interested in. Generally interns volunteer between 8 and 10 hours per week. Volunteers in other positions vary greatly; some volunteer only a few hours per month while others volunteer as many as 20 hours per week.

Will my volunteer position lead to a job with the City of Santa Cruz?

No, not without going through an application process. As a public agency, when hiring, we must abide by the Civil Service code. The City of Santa Cruz (unlike private business) cannot hire people just because they are working as a volunteer. However, experience in the field you would like to be hired in is a tremendous boost for your application and many former local government volunteers are now public employees. See the Human Resources Department page for current openings and how to get a job with the City of Santa Cruz.

What is the difference between a volunteer and an intern?

An intern is a very specific type of volunteer. Interns are looking to gain hands on experience in their field of interest and have a specific career related goal in mind.

Do you have to be a student to intern?

No! CitySERVE works to create internships for students, recent graduates and people who are exploring career changes. The most important factor for internship placement is that you have a clearly defined goal and are able to commit for a defined amount of time.

What volunteer position at the City of Santa Cruz is the most fun?

All of our volunteer positions are fun in one way or another - that's why community members want to volunteer here! We would have to say that volunteering in the CitySERVE office is the most fun - but we are a little biased!

What Insurance is needed to volunteer?

The volunteer insurance page outlines the type of volunteer insurance provided to all CitySERVE volunteers. CitySERVE is a partnership between the City of Santa Cruz and The Volunteer Centers of Santa Cruz County; subsequently we are able to provide this special volunteer insurance coverage to all volunteers in lei of workers compensation. It is very important that all new volunteers read this page and are aware of these policies.

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