JSS succeeds because of its fabulous team of volunteers. Our volunteers serve a wide variety of valuable roles. They function as drivers, friendly visitors, events supporters, language tutors, helpers with the Refugee Resettlement program and so much more.

Becoming a Volunteer – Please begin by filling out a Volunteer Application! 

Help with holidays, administration, and seniors: 

Friendly Visitor – volunteers to visit and support people coping with memory loss and various forms of dementia. We will also have ongoing opportunities for training and staff support. 

Volunteer at holiday, social events, and Shabbats – Help residents, family and friends at retirement facilities to celebrate Shabbat. Seat guests, pour wine and juice, and distribute challah, interact with the residents and their families.

Office Help – Assist in keeping track of participants in various social and educational activities. Help recording and tracking volunteers.

Drivers – Help transport JSS clients to events, appointments, shopping, and other engagements. We are always looking to expand our pool of drivers!

Help with providing direct assistance to refugees:

Community Action for Refugee Arrivals (CARA) Program – support JSS refugee clients by setting up apartments and engaging the broader community in ways to make Madison an even more welcoming place for refugees.

Refugee Mentorship through Aljirani Madison – Aljirani Madison (from the Swahili “jirani – neighbor” and Arabic “aljar – neighbor”) is a 6-month long volunteering program that pairs a companion or small group of companions with a refugee or refugee family to form an Aljirani Madison Group. Partner with a local refugee family to provide a warm welcome, companionship, and practical help. You will work with your partner to aid them in reaching their goals agreed upon in advance by your new partner and their JSS case manager. Potential goals may include developing English or financial literacy skills, career development, navigating public transportation, or getting to know the Madison community.

Co-sponsorship – receive training and assistance from JSS staff to share the work of resettlement by ensuring that newcomers access all the social services and information they need. Activities include finding and preparing homes pre-arrival, greeting the family at the airport, connecting them with local services, helping them secure employment and providing transportation as needed, all with assistance from JSS’s experienced staff.

Locating Housing – The JSS resettlement team is looking for community partners and individual volunteers to assist with locating and securing safe, affordable housing for newly arrived refugee families. We need people to conduct searches for housing, make calls to prospective property managers and other partners, and attend showings.


For questions or to request more information, please contact Paul Borowsky, 608-442-4083, or paul@jssmadison.org

To review our Volunteer Handbook, please click here.