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H.O.M.E. Mentorship Program

Start date: Ongoing
Last updated 

The Housing, Outreach, Mentorship, and Education Program provides three levels of support for newly arriving families through community groups of volunteers. HOME teams fundraise to provide a rental subsidy, a complete apartment setup and provide 6 months of mentorship to the family.

Purpose of the Volunteer Position

Subsidy: Fundraising

HOME teams often comment that raising the funds for the HOME family’s stipend was initially the most daunting aspect of their commitment. However, these same teams consistently report in exit interviews that raising the funds for the stipend proved to be the easiest part of their HOME commitment to fulfill. HOME teams make financial contributions in a variety of forms. Some donate out of pocket, others reach out to their networks to raise funds. We’ve seen overwhelming success for fundraising from teams, often raising their subsidy contribution within a matter of days.

HOME Welcome: Housing Set-Up

Due to the scarcity of affordable housing in the bay area, most families spend 2-4 weeks after arrival in temporary housing. We ask HOME teams to be at the ready during the period between the family’s arrival and their move into permanent housing. That way, when IRC secures permanent housing, the HOME team can set up the apartment as quickly as possible, thereby saving the family precious funds.

HOME Mentorship

After your assigned refugee family has been in their home for 30 days, we will schedule a formal meeting for the mentors on your team with the refugee family in their home. At this first meeting, we will make introductions, review the terms of the program, and have both the volunteers and the adult family members sign an agreement that establishes a mutually respectful foundation of understanding for the mentorship. The minimum expectation IRC has of you is that you will meet with the family 2 hours each week, but many mentors spend far more time with their mentees. This decision is ultimately up to you, but we do recommend you consider early on what you can realistically do on a sustainable basis for the duration of your mentorship. While interacting with the family in their home, we have some guidance for you to be effective and maintain healthy boundaries.


  • 6 months

Volunteer Requirements

  • Follow the “IRC Way” of policies and conduct
  • Meet scheduled weekly/monthly commitment
  • Perform all required tasks and functions

Volunteer Qualifications

We ask that candidates have the following qualities:

  • Commitment to the goals and philosophy of IRC


  • Submit an online application here and email Koby Heramil at Koby.Heramil [at] rescue.org

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