Volunteering for WITF

spelling-bee-volunteer.jpgVolunteering is a great way to contribute to the Central Pennsylvania community and gain experience, and also foster personal growth. Volunteers work in partnership with WITF staff in a variety of capacities. Read a special message from WITF's President and CEO Kathleen Pavelko about volunteering for our organization. 

Your company or group can join in the fun or volunteering together for WITF! You’ll be helping to support your home for public media, plus you’ll receive great exposure! Find out who some of the groups who have and continue to volunteer with us are.

If you're interested in volunteering for WITF, please review and fill out these required forms:

WITF volunteer application

WITF Pennsylvania State Police Request for Criminal Record Check

WITF Pennsylvania Child Abuse History Clearance

All volunteers working with WITF will be required to obtain a criminal background check, and any who come in contact with minors while volunteering (such as community outreach events or public tours of our facilities,) will be required to obtain a PA Child Abuse History Clearance, or provide proof that they have been cleared through such applications, perhaps from employment situations. If such proof cannot be provided, or if the volunteer’s application is denied, more suitable volunteer opportunities such as Radio Smart Talk phone screening, or administrative assistance opportunities may be offered and arranged. Any denial will be discussed confidentially with the volunteer, but it is the responsibility of that volunteer to contact any agency directly, not through witf, to discuss errors with the results of the clearance application.

WITF Volunteer Policy Manual

Below is a list of frequently asked questions about volunteering with us.

Q. How do I get there?
A. The WITF Public Media Center is conveniently located just off the Swatara exit 2 of I-283. Click here for directions.

Q. Where should I park?
A. The main parking lot and the lot to the right of the main entrance. Both areas have designated spaces for individuals visibly displaying handicapped placards.

Q. What types of volunteer opportunities does witf provide?
A. WITF has a variety of opportunities, for both individuals and groups, such as Pledge Phone Volunteers, Call Screeners, Tour Guides, Administrative Support, Reception Support, and Community and Special Event Volunteers.

Q. Do I need to arrive early?
A. Yes. You should arrive about 15 minutes before your shift is scheduled to begin so you can receive instructions.

Q. Can I still volunteer if I can't stay for the entire shift?
A. Absolutely. It is okay if you can only come for a portion of a shift - please just let us know ahead of time.

Q. Would you be able to provide written documentation of the amount of time I am volunteering?
A. Yes. We are happy to provide a letter verifying the amount of community service hours you have provided to WITF.

Q. What's it like to answer pledge calls during a fund drive?
A. Simple! You will be seated at a table with a phone, pledge forms, list of thank you gifts available and other information relevant to the pledge campaign. Before you begin, you will receive a brief orientation session from a WITF Pledge Supervisor or staff member who will provide instructions and point out where to find information you might need. Directions for answering calls are listed right on the pledge form; all you have to do is follow the script. You will ask the callers for basic information, questions about the amount of their pledge, what thank you gifts, if any, they might want and about their contact preferences.

Q. What do I do if the caller has a question I can't answer?
A. Often you will be able to find the answer in the reference materials and instruction you've been provided. However, if there is a question you can't answer, raise your hand and the Pledge Supervisor will usually be able to find the answer quickly. You can also take a message if the Supervisor is assisting another volunteer and the Supervisor will get back to the caller.

Q. Will I be answering calls during the whole pledge shift?
A. Not necessarily. During the fund drive, programs air for segments ranging from 10 to 40 minutes without interruption. These are followed by a pledge break of about 10 minutes. Almost all of the phone calls come during the pledge breaks. We encourage you to bring along a book, magazine or other activities to do during any "down time."

Q. Will I be on TV?
A. Phone volunteers are shown only during live TV breaks. Some of our pledge breaks are live from the studio, some are pre-taped, and some are provided by other sources. It is common for the host to interact with volunteers during breaks. Volunteer groups will often be granted a brief interview during one of the live breaks to promote their organization.

Q. What should I wear?
A. Requested attire is typically business casual. It is best to dress in layers so you can accommodate warm or cool temperatures. Temperatures in the WITF Public Media Center and the TV studio can vary depending on the time of year. The TV studio tends to fluctuate the most; as time passes, the studio lights continue to produce heat. If you are with an organization and are going to be on air, you may want to coordinate clothing with others in your group.

Q. Should I bring anything to eat or drink?
A. You don't need to bring snacks (unless you are sticking to a specific diet), though you may want to have a meal before you come. Plenty of snacks will be provided along with sodas, coffee and other hot drinks.

Q. Is there anything else I should bring?
A. As previously mentioned, it is a good idea to have something to read or work on while you are not answering calls or on-air in the WITF TV studio.

Q. What if my question isn't answered here?
A. Call 717.910.2945 or email volunteer@witf.org.

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