Become a Volunteer
Role of Red Deer City Victim Services Unit Advocates
RDCVSU Volunteer Advocates provide emotional support, information and referrals on scene and/or over the phone to victims of crime and to individuals or groups impacted by a traumatic event (ex. Sudden death).
In the past, we have had people commit to becoming Advocates because they think it will be a fast-paced role working side-by-side with the police to assist a victim(s) right after a crime.
The reality is that although 90% of our referrals come from the RCMP, most do NOT require immediate, in person response. Very few call outs require Advocates 'on scene'. Advocates provide most of their assistance to victims over the phone.
The work done by our volunteer Advocates makes a difference in the lives of individuals and families impacted by crime and/or tragedy!
RDCVSU is always looking for new volunteers!
Basic Qualifications for a Volunteer Advocate
- 18 years or older
- Canadian Citizen / Landed Immigrant (Resided in Canada a minimum of 10 years)
- Police Enhanced Security Clearance
- Successfully complete Alberta Solicitor General On-line Training
The Advocates work in an office in the Red Deer City Detachment, located in downtown Red Deer at 4602 - 51 Avenue.
Advocates are asked to complete at least four shifts every month (roughly twelve hours per month). This office time can be completed in one block, but is usually broken down into smaller time slots. Of course we work around vacations, busy periods of employment and family commitments that may arise.
While in the office, advocates are making first contact or follow-up calls with victims to offer services; meet with victims to provide information or support by explaining or assisting victims with completing forms; conducting court preparation sessions; and sometimes assisting staff with administrative functions. Regularly, advocates are scheduled to assist in court accompaniments.
Crisis Call Dispatchers
Advocates are asked to sign-up and carry the on-call call-out phones for a week at a time. These two advocates act as dispatchers for RDCVSU
These advocates may be contacted by the RCMP when Victim Services Assistance has been requested. They will in turn contact the volunteers that have signed up to be on call and available to attend Crisis Calls. These advocates will follow-up with the detachment and advise if volunteers are available to attend.
Advocates are required to sign up for a minimum of two on-call shifts per month. When requested by the police, two or more advocates will respond to a crisis call. They attend on scene (scene of incident, secondary location or the hospital) to provide support and information to victims of crime and/or tragedy.
Advocate meetings are held every month (except for July & August). Advocates are required to attend these meetings.
RDCVSU participates in a variety of community events (Ex. Let’s Talk & Law Day). Staff and advocates will assist with public displays and the distribution of information.
Advocates may be called upon to give support and assistance to members of the public and as appropriate refer them to their local police detachment.
Throughout the year, there will be several training opportunities locally, provincially and abroad. Advocates are required to keep their training up to date and to take advantage of various different types of training throughout the year that is provided and paid for by our program.
Advocate Application Process
In April 2016, we revised our applicant process. Changes were made to facilitate meeting with interested volunteers and to process applications in a more timely manner.
In general, the annual application process moving forward will be as follows:
Attend Applicant Open House: Downtown RCMP Detachment
See Unit Calender for dates and further information.
While Clearance Pending:
Required Qualifications are Completed:
In House Training & Documents:
Application forms and security documents once completed, can be submitted either by mail or by dropping them off at the front counter of the Red Deer City RCMP Detachment, 4602 - 51st Avenue, Red Deer, AB, T4N 2N2, in a sealed envelope.
If anyone has any questions regarding the application process, completion of the forms or the requirements of the position, they can Contact Red Deer City Victim Services at 403-406-2345 or call the Program Manager at 403-406-2341.