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Volunteering with Switchboard

Switchboard aims to provide peer-driven support services for LGBTIQA+* (Lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans, intersex, queer, asexual) people, their families, allies and communities. Our volunteers are peers; therefore all volunteers must be LGBTIQA+ or questioning. You must be over 18 to volunteer with Switchboard Victoria.

Information you provide to us will be kept strictly confidential; only Switchboard staff will have access to these details.

We welcome, value and support applications from Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander people, people who are trans and / or gender diverse, intersex, asexual, living with disability, who work in the sex industry, younger, older, live regionally or rurally, are culturally and linguistically diverse (CALD), People of Colour or People of Faith.

Click here to register your interest in volunteering with Switchboard

Volunteer roles:

1. LGBTQIA peer support (teleweb service)

Switchboard is the Victorian partner of QLife; a national organisation that provides a peer-based telephone and web counselling service (click here to read more about this program).

Switchboard peer supporters are trained volunteers who identify as being part of the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, intersex, queer, asexual + communities. Our volunteers are committed to working within a framework of respect and anonymity. We aim to be intersectional, feminist and anti – oppressive (strengths based) in our work, to meet people where they are at. We aim to listen, to connect and understand and offer information and referral, if appropriate.

Interested in becoming a peer supporter? The work we do is hard, many of the people we talk to have experienced stigma, sexuality and gender based discrimination, family and intimate partner violence, complex mental health issues, ageism, discrimination due to disability, structural violence , racism, sexism and experience suicidal thoughts and behaviours.

We would invite you to reflect on these issues and consider if you are ready to have conversations that include these difficult topics. While we can provide you with training and a framework to do the work you need to be a resilient, emotionally intelligent and mature person. Do you have the time and capacity to take on this important and vital work as a peer supporter on Qlife?

How to apply: Switchboard’s recruitment and training of peer supporters usually occurs twice a year. In 2020 the first course will run from 26 Feb –3 May with recruitment to start on 5 Feb. The second course will run from 29 July – 13 Sept with recruitment to start from 15 July. If you are interested in hearing more about what’s involved, and would like to submit an expression of interest for the training course, please complete the form above.

2. Out & About Community Visitors Scheme

Out & About is a home-based visiting service for older LGBTQI people at risk of social isolation and accessing aged care (read more about Out & About here). Out & About volunteers act as peer community visitors / friends, catching up with a socially isolated older person at least once a fortnight over 12 months. Everyone requesting a volunteer visitor lives with disability, chronic health conditions and / or mental illnesses; our volunteer visitors must be understanding of this, reliable and kind. Click here to read our volunteer role description.

How to apply: Out & About does not actively recruit new volunteers on mass. Instead, we recruit new volunteers individually as needed when we receive a new referral from anywhere in Victoria. Volunteers are recruited from a client’s local area. Please register your details on the link above and we will get in contact with you if / when an opportunity to volunteer becomes available in your area.

3. Make a suggestion

Do you have a particular interest or ability? Please get in contact via the form above and let us know how we might be able to work together. We’ll get in contact with you if our needs match.