Volunteer at Maitri

Maitri would not be able to operate successfully without the loving efforts of volunteers. Volunteers embody the spirit of generosity and compassionate friendship, and are integrally woven into the fabric of everyday life at Maitri.

Emotional and Practical Support

“Thank you for rocking my world! I have not felt the way I did this past weekend (during Maitri volunteer training), in almost 5 years. I feel like an onion, my layers peeled from around me, with my core exposed, with my mind seeing things in a different perspective. Every one of our guides/leaders were simply amazing, and touched different aspects of myself.” – Kartic

Volunteers provide practical and emotional support to our residents, assist by the bedside, help with household chores, and perform various administrative and development functions. This page primarily highlights volunteer opportunities with residents. For further information about in-house Volunteer opportunities, please contact David Valentine, Volunteer & Activities Coordinator, at (415) 558-3004 or dvalentine@maitrisf.org.

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Special Event Support

There are also many special event volunteer opportunities at Maitri where you can donate time and energy. Maitri has special events like Dinner at Maitri, Holiday Open House, and BLISS where help with setting up, providing wait service, and breaking down is much appreciated. Additionally, we partner with third-party organizations to provide event support, like Academy of Friends, Folsom Street Events, and Richmond Ermet AIDS Foundation. If you are interested in helping out at any of our special events, contact David Valentine, at (415) 558-3004 or dvalentine@maitrisf.org.

Administrative and Other Support

If you are interested in the next volunteer training session, please download and complete the Maitri Volunteer Application and return it to David Valentine, Volunteer Coordinator (by mail to Maitri Compassionate Care, 401 Duboce Ave. SF, CA 94117-3551; or email to dvalentine@maitrisf.org). You will be contacted for an interview if your background and interests match our needs. You do not need prior health care or volunteer experience to join our program. In some instances, prior training(s) from agencies other than those with which Maitri collaborates will be considered sufficient as determined by the Volunteer Coordinator or Program Director.

Application Form

If you are interested in the next volunteer training session, please download and complete the
Maitri Volunteer Application and return it to David Valentine, Volunteer Coordinator (mail to Maitri Compassionate Care, 401 Duboce Ave. SF, CA 94117-3551; or email to dvalentine@maitrisf.org). You will be contacted for an interview if your background and interests match our needs. You do not need prior health care or volunteer experience to join our program. In some instances, prior training(s) from agencies other than those with which Maitri collaborates will be considered sufficient as determined by the Volunteer Coordinator or Program Director.

Training Schedule


Maitri offers three volunteer training sessions per year. The sessions typically begin on a Friday evening and continue all day Saturday and Sunday.
For more information about volunteer opportunities and upcoming training sessions, contact David Valentine at (415) 558-3004 or dvalentine@maitrisf.org.

Emotional and Practical Support Training

Volunteers must first attend a training program prior to receiving their assignments at Maitri. The comprehensive training provides practical information about working with patients. It is also an opportunity for prospective volunteers to examine their own feelings about sickness and mortality. The training is offered in a supportive environment by professionals and long-time volunteers who have extensive knowledge and experience in end of life/AIDS care in a contemplative and compassionate setting.

Maitri Volunteer Training–Spring & Fall

Maitri offers trainings twice a year. Our comprehensive four-day spring or fall training provides the tools and information that will enable volunteers to have a productive and rewarding experience with the residents. It is offered in a workshop setting and is led by staff members and other community members eager to share their experience working with AIDS patients and who are familiar with Maitri’s philosophy of care.

The training covers the following topics:

  • Maitri’s History and Philosophy
  • AIDS Update
  • Universal Precaution
  • Body Mechanics
  • Cultural Competency
  • Working with the Multiple-Diagnosis Residents
  • Boundaries/Limit Setting/Confidentiality
  • The Importance of Touch and Music therapy
  • Dealing with Grief and Multiple Loss
  • Spirituality
  • Maitri and Its Role in the Community
  • The Role of the Volunteers
  • Volunteer Roundtable
  • Resident Roundtable
  • Fire Safety Training


General Duties

Maitri has an ongoing need for volunteers who can commit to at least four hours a week for six months. Volunteers may be asked to provide support with any or all of the following:

  • One-On-One – visiting residents, sitting at the bedside of the ill or dying, assisting them with meals, walks, and activities
  • Transportation & Errands – pick up prescriptions, help with shopping, or take residents to physician visits
  • Bodywork – professionals who donate their services to our residents
  • Activity Leaders – Host a regular activity for residents, such as beadwork, bingo, outings, gardening and music
  • Kitchen – Provide support to our kitchen staff by serving meals and cleaning up afterwards
  • * Outings – Monthly group outings to such places as the zoo, a local museum or the movies requires added support from volunteers

Volunteers bring their special skills to Maitri, and are encouraged to work with the Volunteer Coordinator to define their specific tasks and experience. The possibilities are endless–all you need is an open heart!