Fight Rape Culture! Join Resilience’s Volunteer Program!

Resilience is an Illinois not-for-profit that works to effect positive social change for sexual assault survivors through direct support service and by raising awareness through education and advocacy. And it’s the Resilience volunteers who make all the difference in our work to end sexual violence and help every victim become a survivor. Join us in our stand against sexual violence.

Volunteer Opportunities with Resilience

Thanks to more than 120 Volunteer Medical Advocates, we are able to ensure that survivors who receive emergency treatment at our 15 partner hospitals are never alone. In addition to advocacy, Resilience volunteers support our Education & Training programming and participate in social justice activism, such as our annual Standing Silent Witness demonstration each April during Sexual Assault Awareness Month. If you have further questions, contact us at or at 312-443-9603.

View our full volunteer position description here 
Complete our volunteer application here

How can I get involved?

Volunteer Medical Advocates

Resilience’s Volunteer Medical Advocates are on-call to provide crisis support in emergency departments throughout Chicago. These advocates provide emotional support to survivors of sexual violence as well as information/resources regarding their medical and legal rights and options.  With the survivor’s permission, advocates are expected to remain with the survivor throughout the medical examination and/or evidence collection in the hospital.  Crisis support may also be provided to significant others of the survivor (parents, partners, friends, children, etc.).


  • All volunteers must be at least 18 years old upon application submission.
  • Complete 60-hour Sexual Assault Crisis Intervention training.
  • Complete a federal criminal background check (fingerprinting) at an Accurate Biometrics facility at no cost to the volunteer. Please note that the outcome of this background check may implicate your ability to volunteer with our center. If you have questions about this, please connect with us.
  • Complete a background check with IL Department of Children and Family Services. Please note that the outcome of this background check may implicate your ability to volunteer with our center. If you have questions about this, please connect with us.
  • Commit to completing 288 hours on-call during a 12-month period or less, with a minimum requirement of completing 24 hours on-call per month. On-call shifts are 1AM-7AM, 7-AM-1PM, 1PM-7PM, and 7PM-1AM daily. You will have the flexibility to choose your own shifts both during the week and on weekends.
  • Attend quarterly supervision by meeting with the Advocacy Volunteer Supervisor or attending Volunteer Support Group. Support groups are offered monthly and supervision with the Advocacy Volunteer Supervisor can be scheduled at any time.
  • Access to email, internet and a reliable phone.
  • Advocates must demonstrate a non-judgmental, supportive attitude toward survivors of sexual violence. Strong interpersonal/communication skills and a focus on empathy are essential.
  • Advocates must be committed to the philosophy of our organization: anti-violence, anti-oppression, intersectional feminism, and the empowerment of all survivors of sexual violence.

How will I know if this is the right time for me to volunteer at Resilience?

  • If you identify as a survivor, it is important that you have processed your experience through counseling and/or other methods and do not feel a sense of crisis in your daily life. We recognize that healing is often a lifelong process.  Typically, we ask that prospective advocates who are survivors wait at least one year since experiencing sexual violence before volunteering. If applicable, it is required that advocates wait at least one year since they have stopped receiving services from Resilience or another rape crisis center before volunteering.
  • You are not currently struggling with substance use or self-harm.
  • You have a strong support system in place and can identify those who would be supportive of your volunteer experience with a rape crisis center.
  • If you are unsure about volunteering, you are always welcome to apply, attend an orientation session, and make your decision with the support of staff who can answer your questions.

Short-Term Opportunities: Special Events

Resilience hosts special events, including a wide variety of events during Sexual Assault Awareness Month where volunteers can assist with making grounding stones, decorating t-shirts, and participating in an open mic or demonstration. We always welcome people to attend our events, and special opportunities may be available for short-term volunteers. Contact the office for more information at

Board of Directors

Volunteers and members of the community are welcome to serve on one of many different committees which help meet current needs and determine the future of our organization. There is an application process to become a member of our board.

The Board of Directors is responsible for

  • Ensuring Resilience’s programs and services are consistent with its mission and purpose.
  • Providing proper financial oversight. The board assists in developing Resilience’s annual budget and ensuring that proper financial controls are in place.
  • Ensuring adequate resources, including fundraising, for Resilience to fulfill its mission.
  • Ensuring legal and ethical integrity and maintaining accountability. The board is ultimately responsible for ensuring adherence to legal standards and ethical norms.
  • Ensuring effective organizational planning. The board actively participates in an overall planning process and assist in implementing and monitoring the plan’s goals.
  • Recruiting and orienting new board members and assessing board performance.
  • Enhancing Resilience’s public standing. The board clearly articulates the organization’s mission, accomplishments, and goals to the public and garner support from the community.
  • Supporting the Executive Director and assessing her or his performance. The board ensures that the ED has the moral and professional support he or she needs to further the goals of Resilience.

This is a fantastic opportunity to join an organization that makes a real impact on the lives of sexual assault survivors, their families, and our communities. There is an application process to become a member of our board. To learn more about serving on Resilience’s Board of Directors, please contact Donna Jacobson, Executive Director.

Associate Board

The Associate Board is an inclusive group that supports the work of Resilience while having fun together. Associate Board members attend monthly meetings, contribute $500 annually through fundraising and personal donations, and make a two-year commitment. Learn more about serving on the Associate Board here.

Our Music My Body

This collaborative campaign created in partnership with Between Friends and lead by Resilience was created to raise awareness about sexual harassment in the music scene. We do this work because we believe everyone deserves to feel comfortable and safe when they go to a concert or festival. Our Music My Body works with festival and venue staff, musicians, and music fans alike to create fun and consensual music experiences for all.

Music fans, you can volunteer your time with the OMMB campaign! Volunteers work booths, write articles, organize events, and much more. Volunteers are required to attend a four-hour training and one shadow shift before volunteering freely.

Due to the COVID 19 pandemic, there is limited opportunity to volunteer in person at music events. However, we are still seeking passionate music fans to help us in new and creative ways! Click here to find out more and to fill out a volunteer application.

Upcoming Volunteer Training Dates & Deadlines

Spring 2024 Training Dates:
May 28, 29, 31
June 3, 4, 6, 10, 11, 13, 17, 18, 20, 24, 25, and 27
5:30 p.m. – 9:30 p.m. on Zoom
Potential volunteers can apply here by April 29, 2024 Potential volunteers can apply here by April 29, 2024 and professionals can register directly here by May 22, 2024.

Summer 2024 Training Dates: 
July 29, 30
August 1, 5, 6, 8, 12, 13, 15, 19, 20, 22, 26, 27, 29
5:30 p.m. – 9:30 p.m. on Zoom
Potential volunteers can apply here by July 1, 2024 and professions can register directly here by July 24, 2024.

Fall 2024 Training Dates:  
October 21, 22, 24, 28, 29, 30
November 4, 6, 7, 12, 13, 14, 18, 19, 21
5:30 p.m. – 9:30 p.m. on Zoom
Potential volunteers can apply here by September 23, 2024.

Winter 2025 Training Dates:
January 21, 22, 23, 27, 28, 30
February 3, 4, 6, 10, 11, 13, 18, 19, 20
5:30 p.m. – 9:30 p.m. on Zoom
Potential volunteers can apply here by December 23, 2024.

Spring 2025 Training Dates:  
April 22, 23, 24, 28, 29
May 1, 5, 6, 8, 12, 13, 15, 19, 20, 22
5:30 p.m. – 9:30 p.m. on Zoom
Potential volunteers can apply here by March 24, 2025.

For more information about volunteer trainings, contact

“Survivors of sexual assault who were assisted by rape crisis center advocates received more medical and legal services, and were less distressed by their interactions with law enforcement and medical personnel.”

Rape Survivors’ Experiences With the Legal and Medical Systems, 2006

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