Information Courtesy of the City of Phoenix
The city of Phoenix’s Volunteer PHX and HeatReady PHX programs are gearing up for another hot summer with two volunteer outreach programs. Local community members are invited to join their efforts as We’re Cool or Cool Caller Heat Relief volunteers and help keep our neighbors safe this summer.
We’re Cool Heat Relief Outreach
High summer temperatures lead to thousands of cases of heat-related illness in our community each year. All these cases are preventable with appropriate resources and precautions. The city of Phoenix’s We’re Cool initiative is a volunteer program that strives to prevent heat-related illnesses. The program provides heat relief supplies and helps connect residents to city services, especially in areas where heat-related health challenges occur more frequently.
In 2017, the We’re Cool heat relief initiative was launched by the Volunteer Phoenix Office, the Office of Homeland Security and Emergency Management, and the Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) of the Phoenix Fire Department to connect vulnerable residents to cooling centers and hydration stations during times of extreme heat. This initiative supports Maricopa Association of Government’s Heat Relief Network that includes partners such as the Salvation Army, Maricopa Department of Public Health, Arizona State University, and the city’s Human Services, Parks, and Public Transit Departments. The city’s newly established Office of Heat Response and Mitigation has joined the We’re Cool initiative for summer 2022.
Service Position Summary: We’re Cool volunteers engage community members in public spaces. Volunteers provide maps to cooling and hydration stations and health related summer safety information. Volunteers’ outreach will be focused on our underserved communities, transit locations, and parks and trailheads throughout Phoenix. The program will run for 24 weeks, and volunteers are asked to commit to one 4-hour shift per week. The total commitment is 100 service hours, including training.
Qualifications: Volunteers must be at least 18, agree to and pass a background check, and have excellent communication skills. They also need to complete the pre-service training, have an ability to work with a diverse group of volunteers, and be able to safely work outside in the heat for extended periods of time. Potential volunteers who may not feel comfortable working in the heat for extended periods of time are encouraged to contact Volunteer PHX Office for other opportunities to help prevent heat illness.
Cool Callers Heat Relief Outreach
The city of Phoenix’s Cool Callers initiative is a volunteer program that strives to prevent heat-related illnesses by conducting telephone-based wellness checks. Volunteers proactively guide residents to a wide variety of city and regional resources that can help keep home environments cool and safe during the summer months. People living alone, seniors, and those with absent, older, or inefficient air conditioning units are among those with higher risk of heat-related illness associated with indoor exposure.
Service Position Summary: Cool Callers volunteers call community members who opt into the program at regular intervals during the summer, with a focus on days with National Weather Service Excessive Heat Warnings in effect. Volunteers conduct short questionnaires to assess residents’ health and safety and their ability to access sufficient cooling at home and in their neighborhood. Where necessary, volunteers can help guide residents to city and regional resources related to home cooling and heat safety. The program will run for 24 weeks and volunteers are asked to commit to two 2-hour shifts per week. Volunteers are asked to provide extra support during Excessive Heat Warning periods if possible. The total commitment is 100 service hours, including training.
Qualifications: Volunteers must be at least 18, agree to and pass a background check, and have excellent communication skills. They also need to complete the pre-service training, have an ability to work with a diverse group of volunteers, and be able to use a mobile phone and communicate clearly.
To Learn More
For more information on these volunteer positions, e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org, call 602-495-0313 or visit phoenix.gov/volunteer.