Commonly Asked Questions
What are you looking for in a volunteer?
Volunteers must be positive, outgoing, and passionate about children and our mission. It is important that volunteers work well in a team environment. In addition, our volunteers need to be open-minded and flexible to meet the needs of the families we serve. Please note that some opportunities, including wish granting, have a minimum age requirement.
What kind of schedule must I have to volunteer?
We strive to be as flexible as possible with our volunteers' time, and we ask the same in return. There are various opportunities for you to become engaged with that can fit your interests and availability. It is unlikely that you will have a regular volunteer time (i.e. every Tuesday from 10-2). Most opportunities at
Make-A-Wish® East Tennessee tend to be project-oriented and it is beneficial to have a flexible schedule to accommodate this commitment.
What kind of involvement do you ask of your volunteers?
Commitment levels vary, depending on your volunteer position. You may choose to become heavily involved or you may sign up for special events one at a time as you’re able. We do expect a high level of commitment and professionalism from our volunteers.
What type of roles do volunteers have with Make-A-Wish?
There are six main areas of volunteerism with Make-A-Wish: Fundraising, Office Assistance, Public Speaking, Special Events, Translating and Wish Granting. Additional opportunities may become available on a case-by-case basis, please contact our chapter directly to inquire. For more information about opportunities, please call 423-629-9474 and you'll be directed to the best person to assist you based on what you would like to offer.
How do I become a volunteer?
In order to provide wish children and their families with the best experience possible, we require all potential volunteers to go through an approval process before becoming an active Make-A-Wish volunteer. To begin the process of becoming a volunteer, please download our volunteer application.
Why do I have to undergo a criminal background check?
Make-A-Wish volunteers are trusted to work directly with our wish families and may handle Make-A-Wish resources (including money or donated goods) as they arrange wishes or volunteer at fundraising events. For the protection of the wish families and Make-A-Wish itself, we require criminal background checks of staff and most volunteer positions. All information in the application and any acquired through the background check will remain confidential and is used only for screening and placement purposes.
Are volunteers involved with the children on an on-going basis?
Our emphasis is on delivering one-of-a-kind wish experiences, rather than on developing ongoing relationships with families or children. Of all of our volunteer positions, wish granting offers the highest level of involvement with wish children and their families. Wish granters meet a family at the beginning of the wish experience to better understand the child’s most heartfelt wish, and begin the wish-granting process. The degree to which volunteers are involved in the hands-on planning of the child’s wish will vary, however, depending on the particular wish selected by the child.
I have a question not addressed here. Who can I contact?
If you have additional questions, please contact Devin Schiesser, Director of Program Services, at 423-602-9957 or [email protected]