Volunteering with CIC Ministries

Hundreds of volunteers from a variety of faith traditions work faithfully within our jails to meet the needs of the inmates. A volunteer is an invited guest of the facility chaplain, working under the authority of the facility chaplain and DOC staff. As such we are required to carefully screen, train and supervise all volunteers. Additionally, every volunteer is required to commit to respect every inmate’s religious freedom and beliefs, and not engage in judgment or proselytizing.

Volunteer Criteria

  • Must be 21 years of age or more.
  • Must willingly apply for clearance from the Santa Clara County Sheriff’s office.
  • Must be a legal resident of the U.S. and have a social security number.
  • Must be a member of a recognized local congregation or faith community, where you have attended regularly for 1 year or more, and are known and endorsed by the leadership. We require that each volunteer submits a faith leader reference.
  • Must speak and understand enough English to be able to respond to deputies’ requests and instructions.
  • Must be able to communicate and express your faith to others clearly and without prejudice, and commit to not proselytizing.
  • Must attend required training and meetings
  • Must have a working email address that is checked no less than once per week.

To learn more about the other criteria for serving as a jail ministry volunteer, please review the volunteer handbook

(link to the right)

For more information about volunteering with CIC inside Santa Clara County Jails please review our Volunteer Handbook.

Current Volunteer Opportunities

Click on the links below for job descriptions of our current volunteer opportunities.

Pastoral One-to-one Visitations

Elmwood Men's

Elmwood Minimum Camp Office Chaplain Assistant

Elmwood Men's

Elmwood Minimum Camp Chapel Maintenance

Elmwood Men's

Office Volunteer: Book Ministry

Elmwood Office

Book Delivery

Elmwood Men's

Special Project: Archive Update

Elmwood Office

Office Volunteer: Data Entry

Elmwood Office or Offsite

Group Project: Recover Bibles


Do you have a special gift you want to share?

Contact our staff to talk about how you can serve with CIC!

How to Become a Volunteer

  • Attend Going In, Staying In volunteer training and submit a volunteer information form.
  • Talk to your spiritual leader and community about your call and desire to be involved. Pray and discern. Request and submit a letter of reference from your spiritual leader.
  • Schedule a meeting with the facility chaplain of the jail where you wish to serve by reaching out via email.
  • Discuss with facility chaplain possibility of visiting facility to decide if this is the right ministry for you. The chaplain will send you the necessary forms to receive a one day temporary clearance for your visit.
  • Complete the application process for a two year security clearance from the sheriff’s office.
  • Attend ongoing training with CIC Ministries. We require a minimum of 4 training hours per year. All volunteers must attend one Going In, Staying In training session which counts for 2 hours. The other 2+ hours can be completed in a variety of ways: please contact your facility chaplain for more information.