Leave a lasting impact
Volunteers are the backbone of our organization. Their desire to better the community has changed (and saved!) the lives of numerous patients and families. With the exception of our very limited staff team, everyone in the clinic is volunteering their time and energy for free. Individuals from all walks of life provide services as clinicians, receptionists, medical assistants, and administrative support.
If you're passionate about community care, healthcare for all, fighting food scarcity, promoting health literacy, or even if you're curious about these issues, the Ithaca Free Clinic could be the right place for you to volunteer your skills and time! Testimonials from former volunteers and FAQ's about volunteering can be found below.
“I loved volunteering at the clinic. Everything about it was great from the great patients to the providers and administrators to the nature of the volunteering job. It was always rewarding. Probably my favorite clinical experience leading up to medical school."
"The Clinic provided a direct way to benefit the health of the community by providing extremely necessary services."
“I think the experiences altogether prepared me well for my future in medicine. Most importantly, though, it made me appreciate the beauty of service, and I have since made consistent efforts to continue to stay involved in service to my communities.”
These are some of the most commonly asked questions about the volunteer experience at the Ithaca Free Clinic. These questions may be helpful in determining if a volunteer position with us is the right fit for your needs and goals.
I'm a student interested in pursuing a career in the medical field. Will I get the chance to work directly with patients or shadow a provider?
We know that many students applying for volunteer positions with us want to get more experience before medical school. Unfortunately, we very rarely offer shadowing opportunities. Our providers are offering their services to the community for free, and we don't want to take advantage of the goodwill of our clinicians nor the vulnerability of our patients. There are sometimes other opportunities to interface with patients, including training to do intake/vitals, doing patient outreach, or working the reception desk.
I have training/certification as a medical scribe. Can I scribe at the Free Clinic?
The majority of our providers don't require a scribe. Our exam rooms are small, and the pace of our clinics don't necessitate having someone assist the provider for every appointment.
If you're looking for an opportunity to use those skills, there is likely a better position out there for your goals.
What sort of volunteer positions or duties are available? Can I volunteer if I have physical limitations?
Our volunteers do a variety of tasks, and can change roles from shift to shift based on need. Some of the roles are:
Intake & Discharge
Clinic support (cleaning, organizing, anything the Clinic Manager needs help with)
Those who are capable will be asked to assist with clinic upkeep and cleaning from time to time. Very rarely is anyone asked to lift heavy objects or do other strenuous activity. Those with physical limitations will never be placed in a position that does not accommodate their needs.
I want to help the clinic, but I can't volunteer or donate. Is there another way to contribute to the clinic's mission?
If you want to see if there are more opportunities to contribute or you have ideas of your own, please contact the volunteer and outreach manager at firstname.lastname@example.org. We are happy to find new and creative ways that folks can help the clinic.
Do you have grant writing skills? Are you connected to other local organizations? Have an idea for a program you want to help implement? We want to hear your ideas!
I applied for a volunteer position but haven't heard back. Did you receive my application?
As long as you completed the form above and hit submit, we have your application on file! Volunteer opportunities with us are in high demand, particularly during active college semesters. If we haven't reached out to you regarding your application, it is most likely because we simply don't have the need or capacity to take on more volunteers at the time. Always feel free to reach out to the volunteer manager at email@example.com to check your application status.
What level of commitment do you expect from volunteers at the clinic?
For clinical volunteers (those with a medical licensure), it depends on the service being offered. In general, we would like providers to be available for at least one clinic per month.
For all other volunteers, we typically only bring on those that have consistent availability on at least one day a week or every other week.