Become a Volunteer Group Facilitator

Volunteer Facilitator Training

“When prospective volunteers come for training, I would like to tell them that not only are they going to be doing something good for other people, but they are also going to be learning things that will enrich their lives in ways they can’t begin to imagine. They come into training apprehensive about dealing with the greatest fear all of us have, the vast unknown of death. They have no way of knowing that they are embarking on something that will touch their lives in so many different ways. I have always done volunteer work, but I have never been so richly rewarded as I have been facilitating these groups.”

The Volunteer Facilitator Training is designed to teach the skills needed to provide support and care for persons who are grieving the death of someone. Afterward the training participants will be interviewed. Those accepted as volunteer facilitators are expected to commit to one year of service at The Dougy Center in at least one group. With the supervision of a staff member coordinator from The Dougy Center, each volunteer works with a group of other volunteer facilitators to create a safe environment for and to give mutual encouragement and support to children, teens, and adults grieving a death. Groups do not meet during the year-end holidays, Portland School spring break, or late July through August.

The Volunteer Facilitator Training is an intense experience due to the nature of the subject. There are many opportunities for developing self awareness as it relates to one’s own personal experiences with grief and loss. Please be advised that as a result of this training you may experience an increased need for personal and/or professional support.

We collect applications on an ongoing basis, so feel free to send yours in at any time throughout the year. Approximately two months prior to the training, we will contact you about whether we can offer you a spot in the next training. Decisions will be made based on The Dougy Center’s current needs and the applicant’s availability and schedule flexibility. If you are offered a spot in the training, we require a $35 deposit at that time. The full training fee is $95 per person. Please plan to pay the remaining $60 on the first day of training. After the training and if you are selected to be a facilitator, please note that a background check will be done before you begin volunteering.

The trainings fill up quickly, so we encourage you to send in an application early!

Our next training is coming up soon:

April, 22, 23, & 29, 2017
Download the spring application here.


We value having a diverse group of volunteers related to experiences with grief as well as gender, age, race/ethnicity, sexual orientation, and education.

Click here to view our Frequently Asked Questions.

If you have any questions, please contact Jana DeCristofaro at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) .