PO Box 488, Cape May Point, NJ 08212
Volunteer & Host Family Info
Finding Inspiration in Every Turn
Since the Center’s founding in 1970, the Marianists have relied on volunteer staff for their Family Programs as well as youth retreats and many others. Over the years opportunities to volunteer your time in service of God’s people at the Center have continued to grow.
Volunteers are expected to mature individuals who understand that they are coming to serve as witnesses of God’s love for His people. We often ask volunteers to present on topics such as affirmation, communication, forgiveness and commitment. In addition, volunteers are asked to lead a peer group of either adults, young adults, teens, pre-teens, or superstars.
For a typical family or youth retreat, volunteers are asked to commit for the entire length of the retreat and come prepared for their required presentations.
We require that all staff members be at least 16 years of age, if they come without a parent or legal guardian.
If a parent or legal guardian is present we will allow 15 year olds to staff, provided they are asked by our permanent staff. There will be no exceptions to these age requirements.
All Volunteer Staff are required to sign a Volunteer Covenant Agreement and attend our Child Protection Training. The Child Protection training will be required each time volunteers are asked to staff a family retreat.
If you wish to be considered for a volunteer staff position, please contact us. We ask that you indicate your date of birth, address, phone number as well as your retreat/volunteer experience(s) here at the Center or elsewhere and in what capacity you wish to serve.
Since 1970, the very first Summer Family Program at the Center, the Marianists have asked one family each week to serve as a “Host” Family.
The local staff, with the input and recommendation of Volunteer Summer Directors and Assistant Directors, specially selects this family.
We require that a family have been here at least 2 summers before we consider them for host family.
Since 1970, the very first Summer Family Program at the Center, the Marianists have asked one family each week to serve as a “Host” Family. The local staff, with the input and recommendation of Volunteer Summer Directors and Assistant Directors, specially selects this family. We require that a family have been here at least 2 summersbefore we consider them for host family.
The central role of the host family is twofold, one is to be of service to our visiting families and the other is to be a role model for all family activities, prayers and rituals.
What do we have to do for the families in terms of service?
Host families are asked to:
Write a “welcome” letter to each family prior to the retreat
Welcome and orient each family upon arrival
Meet with the parent(s) of each family the first evening to discuss house rules/regulations
On a daily basis maintain overall cleanliness of the houses (bathrooms, wastebaskets, floors, living room etc.)
Assist with the cooking of breakfasts
Wash dish towels, bath mats and return to supply
Assist the Marianist Family whenever needed throughout the week
What are we expected to do in terms of being role models?
Our permanent Program Staff takes great care in the preparation of our Family Program. Once the program is set in motion, we rely heavily on our Volunteer Staff and the Host Family to lead and execute each element of the program.
The host family will be asked to “go first” when families are asked to present family activities or prayers. Likewise, the host family will go first when families are asked to participate in the forgiveness and commitment services. By setting the tone for these type activities, the retreat families will feel much more comfortable in their own presentations.
The children of the host family also play a vital role, not only with assisting their parent(s) with daily chores, but also in being role models for visiting children. Being attentive and participating in their respective peer groups, as well as role modeling appropriate dress and language are essential. In addition, host children are asked to be inclusive of all types of children that may be present on any given family retreat.