Public Transit Orientation Volunteer
Purpose and Impact: Catholic Charities of Tennessee Refugee and Immigration Services provide a wide array of programs to help newly-arrived refugees acquire skills they need to acclimate to American culture and responsibilities. As many of our clients will rely exclusively on public transportation to travel to and from work, school, medical appointments and other necessary locations, knowledge of how to utilize Nashville's bus and public transit system is vital to their wellbeing and livelihood. Your assistance in providing orientation for our clients is knowledge that they can use for as long as they call Nashville home. Not only will our clients learn how to get to where they need to go, teaching them navigation skills will also provide them with the freedom to explore their new community.
Tasks and Responsibilities: Volunteers will teach clients about all aspects of the Nashville public transit system, including but not necessarily limited to:
•Plan bus routes to and from important location points (for example: home, work, grocery stores, clothing stores, doctors' offices, etc.)
•Demonstrate how to purchase bus tickets and monthly passes, if appropriate
•Teach clients how to board, use tickets/passes, signal for a stop, and change buses
•Show clients how to identify bus stops and how to locate nearby bus stops and stations
•Tell clients how to ask for assistance from MTA officials, as well as how to recognize them as such
•Help with learning bus etiquette (for example, that one shouldn't eat/drink, play loud music, stand in the aisles, etc.)
•Prepare clients for what to do when buses do not arrive and show them how to check for service interruptions/alerts
Required Skills: Knowledge of and/or experience with the Nashville public transportation system.
Preferred Skills: Experience conducting orientations is a plus, as are foreign language abilities.
Time Commitment: One bus orientation typically takes 2 hours, though additional follow-up instruction and/or review may be needed. The minimum commitment we ask for is one full orientation.
Site and Supervision: This volunteer will be supervised by the Employment Coordinator. The exact times and locations of the bus training vary depending on where the client lives and the bus schedule, though midday is usually a good time.Volunteer Benefits: Teaching newly arrived refugees how to navigate their new community can change their lives and have a lasting impact on their freedom and access to opportunities. Through this position, you can feel confident that less than a day's work can make someone's life tangibly better. Volunteers also have the opportunity to learn about other cultures and backgrounds through this experience.