Volunteers at AVP undertake a variety of tasks such as offering support hours, facilitating workshops, helping with AVP outreach, writing for our blog and assisting the team with administrative tasks.
To prepare volunteers to take on these activities safely and in a way that aligns with AVP’s lens, we offer a training program once a year. This training involves 35 hours of training, typically in the form of bi-weekly workshops over the course of one month. It covers a variety of topics such as colonization, sexualized violence, consent, sex positivity, gender beyond the binary, anti-racism, ableism, and self and community care.
We encourage people of all genders, backgrounds and abilities to apply. Our volunteer training is open to students, staff and community members; you do not have to be a UVic student to apply for our training.
We provide all volunteers with information about gender-based violence, intersecting forms of systemic oppression, prevention, support and outreach. Volunteering with us is an opportunity to contribute to communities on and off campus, be involved in activism, learn a range of skills, meet like-minded folks and form lasting friendships.
Interested in volunteering for the 2020/2021 academic year?
As we are not able to hold our regular in-person training due to COVID-19, we are currently working on offering online workshops for the fall. Check back here in September for more information on how to apply to volunteer, what workshops will be offered, and how you can help out this year with our work at AVP! If you have any questions in the meantime, you can reach out to our Volunteer Lead at .
The training structure, content and application process from non-COVID years are detailed below for reference.
Benefits of Volunteering
- Gain and utilize knowledge, analysis, and awareness of gender-based and sexualized violence and the forms it takes
- Build skills to support and empower survivors and allies
- Join a team of people committed to creating change on personal, community, institutional, and systemic levels
- Nurture a community and form lasting friendships
- Learn about and utilize anti-oppressive and decolonizing practice in relation to anti-violence work
- Experience personal development and growth
- Receive approx. 35 hours of training on topics including support, violence prevention, and sex-positive education skills
- Participate in ongoing training sessions throughout the year
- Volunteer appreciation events
- A written reference on request
- Opportunities to be involved in campus life and community events as representatives of the Anti-Violence Project
- UVic students can receive a co-curricular credit for completing the training
- Available approximately 35 hours for the month of volunteer training (dates TBD for 2020)
- Commit to volunteering an average of 1-3 hours/week from September 2020 to April 2021
- Have an open and respectful attitude
- Have a curiosity or awareness of intersectional feminism and anti-oppressive practices
- Have willingness for self-reflection and accountability
- Have willingness to unlearn oppressive behaviours and challenge own assumptions
- Have good interpersonal skills and/or willingness to receive feedback
- Be comfortable working in a group setting – though we aim to be flexible to make participation accessible to all
- Have supports available in your life, as volunteering can be challenging
- Expect to work with diverse populations (people of all genders and sexual orientations, people from various cultural backgrounds)
- Respect people’s rights regarding contraceptive choice and reproductive freedom
- Review our “scent free” policy and be scent-free during training and while volunteering
Volunteer Training – An Overview
After reviewing applications we may interview/have follow-up questions for short-listed applicants as we only have 20 training spots available. We then invite successful candidates to attend our extensive and informative volunteer training (approx. 35 hours).
Our volunteer training program is not an academic course, but the workload is comparable to a university course; regular attendance is required and there are weekly readings. Topics covered in training include: colonization, sexualized violence, consent, sex positivity, gender beyond the binary, anti-racism, ableism, and self and community care. AVP’s training is done from an anti-colonial, intersectional framework.
We will conclude the training with individual check-in meetings to confirm that the volunteer and AVP’s work are a good fit. We ask volunteers to commit to working with AVP throughout the Fall and Spring term for an average 1-3 hr/week in various available volunteer roles. These roles include: supporting survivors, allies, and people who’ve caused harm who are seeking crisis support and referrals, outreach initiatives that may include peer education, engaging groups through activities and table displays, research projects, writing blog posts or book reviews, making zines, art or buttons, helping with administration tasks, and facilitating workshops. We also collaborate and volunteer with many groups to commemorate, celebrate, resist, and protest in the form of marches, cultural events and gatherings, joint conferences or workshops, and artistic events in the community.
AVP strives to be as accessible as possible but acknowledges we are far from being truly accessible. If you have specific accessibility needs not addressed below please contact us.
- Applications can be submitted online or in person
- Colouring, fidgeting, knitting, etc during workshop times encouraged if it’s helpful for you
- Self-care encouraged
- We invite you to inquire about content warnings prior to training if that would benefit you, and we strive to provide content warnings throughout the training process
- The support room is open during training sessions for a quiet space
- Childcare upon request
- Transcription services upon request
- Gender-inclusive washrooms
- Training rooms are large in size and are mostly quiet but can be echoey and have lower levels of background noise including a fan
- There will be chairs without arms available in each of the rooms
- Wheelchair accessible training spaces and washrooms – please contact us for more specific information such as door widths.
- The Student Union Building is a designated scent-free space, however we are using shared spaces for training and cannot guarantee no residual scents will be present
- We strive to use only video with captioning
- Food will be provided via potluck style with contributions from participants and AVP – there is no requirement to bring food
- AVP has volunteer tasks that can be done from home but we currently have no way to make training available online. If you have ideas on how this might work please do contact us. We’re excited to push our learning.
- Many buses are close by and bus tickets available at each session and can be mailed prior to first session
Connect with us about accessibility
We’d love to know what your accessibility needs are and how we can make this training accessible to you. Please contact Paloma at 250-721-8080 or with questions, comments, or concerns. Please contact us as soon as possible as some accessibility services (such as transcription or ASL translation) will need to be booked far ahead of training dates.
Once dates are confirmed for 2020 training, the application form will be made available here. If you are interested in applying, you are welcome to take a look at the application form from last year’s training here.
If you have any questions about training, please email or call 250-721-8080.
We’re really excited to work and learn with you this coming year!
~ The AVP staff ~