Volunteer Sign Up

Serving as a host for Safe Harbor is a very rewarding experience. The job of “Host” to persons experiencing homelessness creating friendships, and a community within the other volunteers. All shifts come with training, and first-time volunteers are always paired with a seasoned host. Please review the following opportunities and sign up for as many as you would like!

There are two ways to become a volunteer at Safe Harbor; 1) Join us through a participating church or 2) Complete the following form (below the role descriptions). You will be paired with a church that is in need of help.

Volunteer Application

If you are affiliated with one of our partner churches, contact them directly for schedule, opportunities, and training. https://www.gtsafeharbor.org/safe-harbor-church-community/ If you are not with a partner church, please complete this form and our volunteer coordinator will contact you. Because you will be working with vulnerable persons, a background check is required. Thank you!

Have you ever been convicted or pleaded guilty to a criminal offense?


Please explain any criminal record activities

Engage with guests from 5:30 - 11p with Goodwill Supervision


Spend the night from 9p - 6a, work with Goodwill Overnight Supervisor


Work with a Dinner leader to prepare and serve. 4p - 7:30p


Help with Serving and Cleaning in the morning


Manage the facility from 5:30p - 11p, manage showers and laundry, monitor building


By checking this, you agree to allow Safe Harbor of Grand Traverse, Inc to perform a background check on you.

I Agree

Volunteer Positions Overview

There is a broad variety of volunteer duties for all kinds of volunteers. Experienced or new, in the background or interacting, in the evening, or overnight, or in the morning.

Dinner Leader
4PM – 8PM. Assists the Coordinator in all duties needed to plan and purchase food and recruit, schedule, and coordinate the team of Dinner Volunteers to prepare and serve it.

Dinner Volunteers – A team of at least 5-6 people to procure, prepare, and serve dinner
4PM – 8PM or so. Individual churches may adjust for shifts or end time. (Volunteers needing access to the shelter earlier may contact their church coordinator) Usually conducted by a pre-organized group of people. This shift requires that you purchase and prepare a hot meal for as many as 80 guests. Soups, Stews, and other “buffet” style meals work best. In an effort to not repeat any main dish menu item, your church’s leader will coordinate meals. Your team will serve the meal, wash and put away dishes, clean and sanitize the kitchen and serving area, and take care of any leftover food. Detailed kitchen information will be provided to meal crews.

Evening Leader
5:15PM – 10:15PM This trained, experienced leader assists the Goodwill Staffer and Coordinator in welcoming Evening Volunteers and seeing that they are aware of their duties. Assists as needed to see that evening procedures are followed. Supervises the removal to storage of totes of absent guests at 7:30. GWStaffer will provide the list of absent guests. Monitors smoke breaks if requested by GWStaffer.

Evening Hosts – 4 (5 on Saturdays) people; male and female preferred
5:30PM – 10PM Evening volunteers are the voices, ears and hearts of the shelter. Volunteers assist staff with the operation of the shelter, share dinner with guests, and often enjoy playing cards and games, listening to guests and providing companionship, staffing scheduled chapel quiet time.

Overnight Hosts – 2 people, male and female
10PM- 6AM Overnight hosts assist with the “winding down” of the evening and take turns monitoring the shelter overnight, doing some light cleaning and laundry. In the morning, volunteers prepare coffee for the breakfast. Overnight volunteers sleep in shifts. A safe, private sleeping area is provided for overnight volunteers and a Goodwill Staffer is on duty at all times the guests are present. Bring your sleeping bag and pillow.

Morning Leader (morning team should include both male and female volunteers)
5:45AM – 9:00AM The Morning Leader helps with breakfast and cleaning and helps with tote management and assists the Goodwill Staffer as needed.

Breakfast Hosts – 2 people
6AM – 8:30 AM The breakfast host manages the continental breakfast. Duties include setting up, monitoring, and putting away breakfast foods, washing and putting away dishes, and cleaning up the kitchen and dining tables.

Cleaning Volunteers Sunday only – 2 people
8AM – 9:30AM Volunteers do a daily cleaning of sleeping areas, restrooms, TV room, and Chapel after the guests have departed.

Saturday Cleaning Volunteers – 4-6 people
8-11AM A more thorough weekly cleaning is done after the guests have departed.