The vast majority of the individuals that are incarcerated will become our future neighbors. The IDOC relies on volunteers from the community to be that bridge between incarceration and release that welcomes them. It is through the investment from the community that they can become successful and productive citizens. We hope that you will join the 4,500+ current volunteers in making a difference in their lives.
Welcome to the Indiana Department of Correction (IDOC) Volunteer page. If you are a current volunteer, thank you for volunteering! If you are interested in learning more about community engagement opportunities with the IDOC, you have come to the right place. Volunteers serve a critical role in our correctional facilities from assisting with programming to mentoring and providing a number of faith-based services. Please read below to learn more about the requirements, opportunities, donation needs, and how you can help us serve our population.
April was National Volunteer Month!
We celebrated 2019 National Volunteer Month by highlighting some of our 4,000+ volunteers throughout the state. Visit our special NVM page to learn more about the wonderful ways our volunteers serve our population.
Due to the very unique environment that a correctional facility presents, volunteers are carefully screened and provided training and guidance to make it the most productive and enjoyable experience as possible. Therefore, volunteers must adhere to the criteria below:
- At least 18 years of age;
- Not under Department supervision or the supervision of any other correctional system or program or on probation;
- Not immediate family member of an offender where personal contact cannot be avoided;
- Provision of references on request;
- Maturity and ability to handle volunteer responsibilities;
- Willingness to accept supervision and direction;
- Willingness to submit to a Tuberculosis screening;
- Willingness to provide an identified and approved service;
- Ability to meet attendance and performance requirements;
- Willingness to meet and complete all training requirements;
- Ability to complement the work of staff;
- Agreement to work without compensation;
- Ability to accept differences in people, namely culture, race, religion and values;
- Willingness to undergo a criminal history check (NCIC); and
- Subject to the approval of the Warden.
If you have been previously incarcerated and you are interested in volunteering, we encourage you to contact us so we can discuss your interests and your options. In every circumstance, the Warden at the facility makes the final decision for the approval of volunteers.
We have facilities throughout Indiana that are looking for volunteers to meet a variety of needs. Below are a few examples of the common roles where volunteers are vital. We encourage you to contact a specific facility for more detailed information about their current volunteer needs. You can also find specific volunteer needs on each facility website under the Volunteer tab.
- Individual and group mentoring
- Creative Arts, music, drama, art classes
- Activity/Course facilitation
- Fatherhood programming
- Addiction-related programming (AA/NA)
- Faith-based services
- Re-Entry assistance (resumes, job interviews/search, etc.)
- Military Veteran programming
- Athletic team opportunities
- The follow facilities are actively recruiting volunteers to assist with The Last Mile coding program. Watch the volunteer recruitment video here.
- Indiana Women's Prison
- Pendleton Juvenile Correctional Facility
- Plainfield Correctional Facility
- Putnamville Correctional Facility
- Rockville Correctional Facility
The IDOC has a long tradition of offering exciting internships to college students throughout the state. At any given time, there are a variety of opportunities available in our correctional facilities, Parole offices, and at our Central Office. If you are interested in learning more, email us here for more information and we can get you connected!
IDOC facilities are always in need of various types of donations. Below are some examples of common donation needs. Please contact the Community Engagement Coordinator at a specific facility to learn about their specific donation needs. You can also find specific donation needs on each facility website under the Volunteer tab. Once you are ready to donate, you can download the form here and send it to the facility for approval.
- Books - educational, recreational, faith-based, etc.
- Release Clothing - clothing, shoes, accessories, for those being released
- Crafting Materials - fabrics, sewing/knitting/crocheting supplies, thread, yarn, etc.
- Woodworking Supplies - used to build items for donations
If you are interested in volunteering with the Indiana Department of Correction or if you are in the process of being approved to volunteer, please review the IDOC Volunteer Handbook. It contains valuable information to help you understand what is expected of our volunteers and to prepare you for volunteering in a correctional environment.
- IDOC Volunteer Handbook (updated 3/1/19)
The IDOC Volunteer Packet below is a requirement to become a volunteer with the Indiana Department of Correction. These forms must be completed by every new IDOC Volunteer and annually as a part of the Annual In-Service Training. Once you have completed these forms, contact the facility where you would like to volunteer for submission instructions. These forms can also be provided to you if you do not have access to a printer.
- IDOC Volunteer Packet
- PREA Brochure (volunteer copy)
- Child Protection Services Worksheet (only volunteers at juvenile facilities)
Volunteer eLearning Training Modules
The following PDF modules are a part of the required training for all volunteers with the IDOC. Please review each one carefully. If you have any questions about any of the content, please contact the Community Engagement Coordinator at the facility where you would like to volunteer.
The IDOC welcomes guests from all walks of life to provide special services inside our facilities. Examples of past guests include guest speakers, individual and group performances by artists, and even potential volunteers that would like to visit a facility before committing to volunteering. If you are interested in being a Special Guest, please contact our Community Engagement Office or contact the Community Engagement Coordinator at the facility where you would like to volunteer.
Below are the forms that are required of the group leader or individual prior to visiting a facility.
Request to Communicate
The interaction that IDOC Volunteers provide to our population provides an enormous benefit to their rehabilitation and preparation for re-entry. We welcome our volunteers inside our facilities to provide these vital services with their safety being a critical concern. It is for this reason that the IDOC must maintain strict guidelines for communicating with our population outside of an approved volunteer activity. If a volunteer would like to communicate with a current or ex-offender, they must complete the form below and submit it to the staff at their facility prior to any communication occuring. Communication between an IDOC Volunteer and a current or ex-offender must be approved by the facility.
Volunteer Exit Survey
We are fortunate to have an extremely dedicated volunteer community. It is not uncommon for many of our volunteers to have been with us for 10 or more years. We attribute this to their dedication and passion to serving our population as well as the warm welcome they receive from their group. However, the time may come to transition from one chapter of their life to another. Before they leave, we ask that IDOC Volunteers complete a short exit survey that collects their feedback about their volunteer experience. We are always striving to improve our processes and make volunteering for the IDOC the best experience possible.
Community Engagement Annual Report
Every year the IDOC prepares an annual report to highlight the impact that our volunteers make inside our facilities and the community outreach efforts by our staff and offenders. While the full extent of the difference our volunteers make cannot be truly measured, we hope the report below gives you a glimpse into how the IDOC strives to become a valuable neighbor in our communities.
Please visit our FAQ section for more information related to volunteering with the Indiana Department of Correction. For additional information or to find out how you can help, please email our Community Engagement Office or contact the Community Engagement Coordinator at the facility where you would like to volunteer.