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Volunteer opportunities

Thank you for your interest in welcoming refugees to your community. By volunteering with the IRC in Tucson, AZ, you use your skills to help people who have fled violence and persecution to rebuild their lives in America. See below for the latest volunteer opportunities and how to apply.

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How to become an IRC volunteer

The International Rescue Committee Arizona (IRC Arizona) serves people with many different life experiences, including refugees, asylum-seekers, survivors of domestic violence, human trafficking, and other crimes, and other vulnerable people. IRC Arizona depends on volunteers to complement staff in providing comprehensive services for clients.  To ensure the safety of clients and comply with grant and contractual obligations, guidelines have been established for volunteer engagement based on supervision and access to confidential information.

 The following displays the required clearances for each tier of positions. The Volunteer Coordinator will inform the applicant of the level of clearance needed. Please do not allow the cost to be a deterrent to your service.   

Volunteers serving clients without staff present and all Interns. (Fee is waived for interns.)

Background Check ($20)

Fingerprint Clearance Card ($73)

Central Registry (Free)

Volunteers serving clients with staff present

Background Check ($20)

Central Registry (Free)

Welcome Center Volunteers in the Children’s Area (Phoenix only)

Background Check ($20)

Fingerprint Clearance Card ($73)

Welcome Center Kitchen, Intake, Reception, Transportation, Medical, Donations Room, and Pride Team Volunteers (Phoenix only) 

Background Check ($20)

One-Time Volunteers (garden days, events, etc.) 

One-time Volunteers generally serve at events and have very limited or no interaction with clients. Therefore, they only require a signed one-time volunteer waiver. 

Why are volunteers asked to pay for their own background clearances? We sincerely hope that the cost is not a barrier. As a nonprofit with limited resources, it is our intention to utilize these resources for the needs of refugee clients. We have found that most volunteers understand and are willing to pay for these costs. The Level One Fingerprint Clearance Card is valid for 6 years and remains with you. If you cannot pay for the cost of the clearance card or other background checks, please let us know. A position that does not require certain clearances might be found. Please discuss with the Volunteer Coordinator during your interview.

Volunteer process

  1. Review our current volunteer openings above.

  2. Get to know IRC and attend a Refugee 101 Volunteer Information Session, now available online. You can register using this link.

  3. Fill out an application online. Make sure to include your availability because many of our volunteer opportunities occur at specific times only.

  4. After your application has been submitted, our Volunteer Coordinator will contact you with a reference request form for you to send to one professional reference. Please instruct your reference to complete the form and return it directly to the Volunteer Coordinator at [email protected].

  5. Our Volunteer Coordinator will contact you to set up a time for a brief phone interview. 

  6. Complete background checks and required forms.

    The IRC kindly asks volunteers to make a $20 donation to help us toward the cost of this requirement.

    Note: In addition, some roles require a valid Arizona Fingerprint Clearance Card. Before applying, review the specific requirements for your role of interest.

  7. Attend an orientation with the Volunteer Coordinator. 

  8. You're ready to get started! Depending on your role, you'll be contacted for either further training or a start-date for your position.

Additional things to note

Please note the IRC takes great care to ensure our volunteers are properly screened, trained and placed in opportunities. It may take up to two months to get placed. The IRC in Tucson has a number of different volunteer opportunities available within all programs of our organization. Please take note that all positions posted may not be available at all times.


If you are a student or recent graduate and are interested in a larger time committment, check out our Internship Opportunities.