G.U.M. Website F.A.Q.

GENERAL VOLUNTEERING

Volunteers
I'm interested in getting involved with G.U.M. What opportunities do you have for volunteers?
In addition to volunteering with the Youth and Children's program, we have a host of other opportunities that range from gardening to helping out with our Facebook page! You can check out the full list byclicking here. If you have additional questions just email us at volunteer@galvestonurbanminsitries.org

What should I think through before committing to volunteer?
Before committing to a program make sure to look at your schedule and honestly calculate the time you have to be involved. Due to the nature of the students and families we serve, we are in need of passionate and consistent volunteers. If your schedule won't permit you to volunteer consistently with G.U.M. then maybe this isn't the season! No worries! G.U.M. cares deeply about our volunteers maintaining a healthy and manageable lifestyle which sometimes means making a step back for season. We have volunteers that take a couple of months or a semester off, then come back and volunteer again once things have calmed down.

Ok! I want to get involved! How do I get started?
Great! The first step is to fill out a volunteer application by clicking the link here. Once you're done be sure to pay the $5 background check located at the bottom of the application page as well as at this link. Second, email volunteer@galvestonurbanministries.org to set up a volunteer interview time.

What if I've already done a background check with another ministry? Do I really have to another one?
Yes! This is the way we make sure that every volunteer (that means you!) as well as every student and parent is protected and placed in a ministry that they can thrive in. We appreciate you going the extra mile!

What if I have a record? Does that automatically me bar me from volunteering?
Not at all! We truly believe in God being a God of restoration and will take every volunteer with a record by a case by case basis.

Do you guys take groups as well?
Absolutely! For more information on what that looks like please click here.

CHILDREN

What does the children program look like?
The Children's program meets Monday through Thursday 3:30 to 5:30pm. The after school program is in place to offer the children in our community a place to receive homework help as well as personal tutoring. The children are picked up or dropped off at the G.U.M building starting at 3:30. They receive snack and participate in team building activities. We will then have a time for Bible study and discussion. Afterwards we break down into smaller groups placing children with mentors. The mentors are in place to build deeper relationships with the students, provide discipline, and help with homework.

What does it mean to be a mentor with G.U.M?
Our children in the program crave personal attention. By setting up a smaller ratio of student to mentor we are encouraging personal relationships to grow. A mentor has the unique opportunity to build a relationship of trust and encourage personal as well as spiritual growth in our children.

What is G.U.M.'s goal in working with the children?
We desire continuous character development for our kids, teaching them to love people, to be curious and creative students, and helping them to internalize the knowledge of the gospel through the development of relationships.

What do I need to bring?
There really is not a lot you to bring with you. It is more about being present and consistent in our children's lives.

How many kids will be there?
Around 16

What is the age range of the kids?
The students in our children's program range from Kindergarten grade up through 4th grade.

What are the rules?
We ask our students to respect each other and to respect leaders and volunteers. Students are asked not to interrupt the lesson and to raise their hand if they have a question. We expect the students to clean up after themselves, use their manners, respect and take care of our building and all of our furniture, games, books, and art supplies. If a rule is broken students will receive a verbal warning, if rules are broken again they will have to move their clip. If a student cannot follow the rules after reaching "red" on the clip system the Children's Director will be contacting their parents. Hitting and making fun of each other are not permitted at G.U.M. If this occurs parents will be called immediately.

What will I be doing?
You will be developing one on one relationship's with the students you are mentoring. Getting to know them and learning about who they see themselves as. Walking with them through their day from chore time to homework to free play. You will be asked to make sure they are actively engaged in program and have homework completed. There will also be a journal for each child where we ask that you make any notes you feel the Children's Director or another volunteer need to be made aware of.

YOUTH

What does Youth look like on Monday nights?
On Mondays from 6:00 to 8:00 5th - 12th graders from our neighborhood are invited to Galveston Urban Ministries to take part in our Youth program. We begin our lesson at 6:00; the boys will meet in one room and the girls in another room. Our lessons are about 30-45 minutes long and are intended to teach basic biblical principles and life skills. We then split into our small groups for prayer, high point/low point, and discussion questions. When we finish small group time the kids eat dinner and have a short period of free time. We encourage the kids to sit with their small group during dinner and during free time and we ask that volunteers stick with their small group kids all evening. Chores will be assigned and completed 10 minutes before Youth ends.

Why do we have "small groups" on Monday nights?
Our kid's behavior is much better in smaller groups and they are more likely to open up about their lives and ask questions with a group of 2-3 others than in a large group setting. Each volunteer will be assigned a small group of 2-3 kids. They will be given discussion questions to ask after lesson. They will then be responsible for asking the kids their high point and low point of the day and if they have any prayer requests. If you volunteer with us on Monday nights I ask that you please stay with your small group kids all evening! We encourage you to be intentional in building relationships with your small group at GUM and outside of programming as well.

What is G.U.M.'s goal in working with the youth?
More than anything we want our kids to come to know, love, and follow Jesus. We want to set an example for them of what it looks like to be a Christ follower. We also want to help mold our youth into responsible and respectful young men and women.

What do I need to bring?
Feel free to bring your bible to use during small group time.

How many kids will be there?
Around 16

What are the age range of the kids?
The students in our youth program range from 5th grade up through high school.

What are the rules?
We ask our students to respect each other and to respect leaders and volunteers. Students are asked not to interrupt the lesson and to raise their hand if they have a question. We expect the students to clean up after themselves, use their manners, respect and take care of our building and all of our furniture, games, books, and art supplies. If a rule is broken students will receive a verbal warning, if rules are broken again I will call home. If a student cannot follow the rules after that they will be taken home. Hitting and making fun of each other are not permitted at G.U.M. If this occurs parents will be called immediately.

What will I be doing?
Building relationships, teaching students about Jesus, praying with and for students, and enforcing rules. We ask that you focus specifically on the kids in your small group, but never turn down an opportunity to disciple a student!

What is the reading program?
On Thursdays from 5:30 - 6:30 5th - 7th grade students are invited to G.U.M. to receive one on one tutoring. We have a guided reading program in place. You do not have to be a teacher or have an education background to participate in this. Our program is easy to follow, all you need is a desire to work one on one with a student to teach them to understand what they are reading, allow them to read to you, and finish by reading aloud to them. Volunteers for this program will work with the same student each week and are asked to track their progress.

This sounds like something I want to be a part of! How do I sign up?
Excellent! Just click this link and follow the instructions!

WORK TEAMS

When do you allow work groups to come?
We take groups all year round but our schedule fills up fast so be sure to lock in your dates now!

What does a normal work day look like?
Teams will arrive at the GUM building at 8:30am for a GUM Staff led devotional. From there teams will head out to the work site. Teams will typically break for lunch either at the GUM building (GUM has two full kitchens that are available for work teams to use as well as store food) or in the city. At 1:30pm teams will meet back at the GUM building to prepare for Street Camp with the Children's Director. At 2pm they'll head to the Street Camp and be there until they leave for the day at 4pm. Since Street Camp is only three days, groups staying longer than three days will have the option of either a full work day or half a work day followed by the Otherside of Galveston Tour. (For more info on the Other Side of Galveston Tourclick here)

What's the cost?
The cost is $15 a day per person (leaders and students). So for example, a group of 15 for 4 days would be $900.

What does the fee go to?
Our fee goes to staff hours to facilitate your group, building materials, shirts for your group, and any other costs associated with the projects.

What if our group has a mission budget and wants to donate above the fee?
G.U.M. will gladly accept donations of any kinds! GUM is proud to say that we are fully supported by churches, individuals, and groups like you so every little bit helps!

What are the due dates for payment?
Deposits will be due three months before your trip date. We are so thankful for all the groups that want to come and serve with us but this also means spots fill up fast. Your deposit not only locks in your spot but also helps us better prepare our calendar!

Does GUM provide lodging?
There are a few churches on the island like Moody Methodist and Seaside Baptist that take groups year round. Unfortunately, we're not able to house work teams at this time, but we're hoping to be able to by 2016! For more information on housing please email volunteer@galvestonurbanministries.org

What tools do we need to bring?
Due to the nature of our worksites and the number of groups we have coming through we won't have specifics of your work project until two weeks before your scheduled date. Please emailvolunteer@galvestonurbanministries.org for more information.

Ok! I want to bring my group! What do you need from me?
Great! First, if you're a first time work team please fill out the volunteer application by clicking the link here. Next, download the work team contract here, and mail that in along with your deposit to PO Box 612, Galveston, TX 77553-612.

What else do we need to bring?
Please bring signed waivers for every person on your team (must be signed by parent if participant is under the age of 18) as well as your fee minus the deposit amount.

STREET CAMPS/ KID'S CLUB

What is Street Camp/ Kid's Club?
Street Camp is basically a day where we go to the local park to minister to, play with, and most importantly love on students in the North Broadway neighborhood.

What will our groups responsibility at Street Camp?
Great question! Your team will be responsible for running Street Camp. This means organizing games, preparing a short, kid-friendly bible lesson, and blessing the kids with simple snacks.

How many students should we expect?
Typically you should expect between 25- 40 students.

What are the age ranges of the students?
Usually between Pre-K to 6th grade.

What should we bring?
Snacks for 40 students (water coolers, cups, etc.), recreational items (basketballs, footballs, soccer balls, chalk, bubbles, frisbees, etc.), any materials needed for the organized game, as well as any materials needed for the worship time.

What does a typical Street Camp schedule look like?
A typical Street Camp will look like this: An hour of free play, 10-15 minutes of an organized group game, 10-15 minute worship time, snack, and then free play until 4pm.

What games work with your students?
Any games that encourage team building and have simple rules usually work well with our students. Games like Dragon Tails, Simon says, and Gaga Ball (we actually have a portable pit for Gaga pit that your group is welcome to take to the park and setup).

What should the worship time look like?
Worship normally consist of a couple of simple songs (songs with easy words that get our kids up and moving work well. i.e. Father Abraham and the Banana Song) and then a simple bible lesson or skit.

Are there any park rules we need to be aware of?
Another good question! Here are some park rules to be aware of:

  • No leaving the park grounds. While we've always felt safe in our neighborhood we always want to use wisdom and make sure we all stay together.
  • No putting kids on shoulders. Even though our kids beg and plead with you to put them on their shoulders or put them up on the basketball goal, there's too much of a safety hazard. It's alright to pickup a kid in your arms but absolutely no shoulders.
  • All kids must be present for the bible study to receive snack.
  • Don't accompany kids to the bathroom. Again, we just to make sure we use wisdom in every circumstance and that we don't put our work teams or our kids in a bad situations.

OTHERSIDE OF GALVESTON TOUR

What is the Other Side of Galveston Tour?
The Other Side of Galveston Tour is a self-guided scavenger/ North Broadway Tour designed to give groups and individuals and deeper, biblical understanding of poverty and it's effects, specifically in the North Broadway neighborhood.

How does the tour work?
Groups will start out at the main GUM building for instructions. They will be split into groups, with each group having one or two leaders depending on the size. They will be given lists and sent out into the neighborhood. When they have finished with the list, they will return to the GUM building for a debrief with GUM staff.

What can we take with us?
To get the full experience we recommend leaving everything at the GUM offices. This means water bottles, cell phones, money, keys, sunglasses etc.. Only the leaders are allowed to bring their phones for emergency purposes only.

How long is the tour?
That's entirely dependent on the group. Some groups finish in two hours, some in four. Our suggestion is that you take your time but allot for the full four hours.

Are there any rules for being out in the neighborhood?
Yes! They are as follows:

  • As representatives of GUM and furthermore of Christ we ask that you be respectful of our neighbors and our community. This means keeping horseplay and loud talking to a minimum.
  • Always stay with the group and use the buddy system.
  • Never go into a residence or business without prior approval from GUM.

I definitely want my group to participate in this! How do I sign them up?
That's awesome! Just email volunteer@galvestonurbanministries.org to setup a time.