I Wonder....FAQ's

Q. How do I start the process of becoming a volunteer?

A. To become a volunteer, start the process by submitting an application through Volunteer Connection. You will receive an automated email after submitting the initial step – you must click on the link in this email to activate your account. Once your Volunteer Connection account is activated please complete all of the required steps listed to become an active volunteer.

Q. How will I know I have become a Red Cross volunteer?

A. You will have completed all the steps listed in Volunteer Connection and assigned a to a position and group.

Q. What is Volunteer Connection?

A. Volunteer Connection serves as the primary Volunteer Management System (VMS) for the American Red Cross. Volunteer Connection provides a robust database solution for volunteer record management as well as a dedicated volunteer member site that supports group collaboration tools, volunteer hours sign up, and much more.

Q. Why do I need an email to volunteer with the Red Cross?

A. In order to activate your Volunteer Connection account you must have an active email address. If you do not have an email address we encourage you to acquire one from one of the many free services providers.

Q. How old must I be to volunteer with the American Red Cross?

A. To volunteer with disaster services, you must be 18 years old. A variety of opportunities may be available for Youth Volunteers under the age of 18. Please contact your local chapter for more information.

Q. Why do I have to complete a background check to volunteer?

A. Background checks have been part of the American Red Cross volunteer process for many years. After the hurricanes of 2005, mandatory background checks for employees and volunteers were instituted. Red Cross continues to affirm our accountability to the American public. The background check initiative will help us achieve a more efficient and safer work environment for our employees and volunteers.

Q. How soon may I be deployed for a disaster relief operation within the United States?

A. The American Red Cross requires all volunteers to go through the necessary training before being deployed to other parts of the country. Once trained and identified as a disaster services volunteers you must have at least a 2 week (14) minimum availability and ready to travel within 24 hours of being called to deploy.

Q. How soon may I go overseas to volunteer after a disaster?

A. The American Red Cross does not recruit volunteers specifically for international disaster. The best way for you to help the International Red Cross is to get involved with your local region. Your region will train you to develop the skills of local volunteers based on the needs of the community. Your involvement can help build the local community, particularly following major disasters.

Q. Does the American Red Cross Central Florida Region accept community service hours?

A. The American Red Cross accepts community service hours needed for graduation requirements. However, we cannot accept any “court-ordered community service hours.”

Q. I’m interested in phlebotomy. May I volunteer as a phlebotomist?

A. The American Red Cross Central Florida Region does not provide blood services.

Q. I have a job; what is the time commitment to volunteer?

A. Time commitments vary depending on the area in which you choose to volunteer. Many volunteers work regular schedules. As a volunteer, you may choose to volunteer as much or as little as you like. Or you may simply choose to be available only for major disasters.

Q. I am a medical student/nurse, do you have any volunteer opportunities for me?

A. We encourage volunteers to get involved in a variety of areas. However, as a medical student or nurse, your skills would be beneficial to our Client Services in Disaster Services. Through Client Services, you would work directly with those who have lost everything to a fire, increasing your bedside manners!

Q. May I volunteer from home?

A. Our volunteer job opportunities vary, which enables some volunteers to work from home or in the field.

Q. I am an American Red Cross volunteer from another chapter or region. How may I transfer to the Central Florida Region?

A. To transfer to the Central Florida Region, please complete a volunteer transfer request here.

Q. I am a youth volunteer. Do I need a background check?

A. All American Red Cross volunteers aged 18 and over are required to clear a background check.

For questions regarding volunteer service, please email Volunteer Services.