Volunteer Opportunity Details

Boulder County Volunteers!
Position Title:Intensive Services Detox Counselor
Department:Public Health
Category:Human Services and Public Health
Time Commitment or Project Date:Minimum of 8 hours per week for 9 months
ARC Valmont Site; 3180 Airport Road, Boulder
Program Summary:

Program Summary:  This program provides safe detoxification from alcohol and/or drugs 24 hours/day, 7 days/week; provides referrals for HIV testing; family counseling; psychiatric assessment; and medical referral. For more information, visit www.BoulderCountyARC.org.

Description of Work:  This position works in the Addiction Recovery Centers (ARC) Valmont facility, which provides detoxification and transitional residential treatment (TRT) services to clients in Boulder County. Volunteers with the Intensive Services Program start with less challenging tasks (e.g. monitoring, breathalyzers, laundry) and progress to more complex and skilled tasks (e.g. de-escalation of clients, counseling).

Duties and Responsibilities:
  • Provide breathalyzer testing
  • Prepare or serve food
  • Clean dishes
  • Make client beds
  • Do laundry
  • Inventory supplies
  • Coordinate care with family or friends of clients
  • Observe/complete discharge of clients
  • Coordinate care with hospital and police
  • Clean up vomit/urine/feces • Do hourly rounds to check on clients
  • Take client vital signs
  • Work with intoxicated and sober clients
  • Observe/complete intake of clients
  • Provide information and counseling services to the public
  • Coordinate care with outpatient treatment providers
  • Conduct daily house meetings
Qualifications and Requirements:
  • A passion to work with substance-abusing individuals
  • Positive attitude
  • Professionalism
  • Ability to be self-directed
  • Patience
  • Teachable spirit
  • Confidence
  • Ability to stay calm and maintain composure during stressful times
  • Desire to work with a variety of populations
  • Self-motivated
  • Ability to communicate effectively
  • Experience in human service or substance abuse work
  • Knowledge or ability to learn appropriate boundaries with clients
  • Ability to be nonjudgmental and have respect for all individuals, regardless of race, ethnicity, gender expression, sexual orientation, socio-economic background, age, religion, ability, or size
  • Ability to assist staff in lifting, supporting, and/or moving clients during medical emergencies

Special Requirements:

  • If in recovery, volunteers must have at least two years of sobriety, with no relapse during that period.
  • If a former client of the ARC at BCPH, it must be at least three years since the volunteer was discharged from any inpatient or outpatient treatment at the ARC.
  • Students must be at least a senior-level undergraduate or 21 years old.
  • Must submit immunization history form and immunization documentation.  Some immunizations and/or TB tests may be required (at the expense of BCPH), and volunteer must comply with these requirements prior to start date.
  • Universal precautions and TB training will be provided by the BCPH employee infection control nurse before the volunteer may begin.
Application or Registration Deadline:
Application Process:
Training Dates and Information:
  • Training will be provided by Intensive Services staff.


  • Volunteers will be assigned to an experienced substance abuse counselor who will provide day-to-day supervision.
  • Supervisors will meet with volunteers periodically during the probationary period (first 12 weeks) to discuss performance.
Additional Information:

Review Process:
Volunteers will work a minimum of eight hours per week for nine months.  The first 12 weeks are a probationary period.  The supervisor will conduct an informal review process at 6 weeks and 12 weeks.  These reviews help to ensure that: 1) the volunteers’ needs are being met and they feel their time is valued and well-spent; and 2) volunteers and staff can share concerns and offer information about how the volunteers can more effectively help with the work being done at the ARC.

What to Expect as a Volunteer at the ARC:
There may be downtime during certain shifts, particularly during the first six weeks, and volunteers should consider this time as an opportunity to observe as part of their learning experience.  Volunteers may also talk with staff, ask questions, and read additional materials about addictions during this time.

Duties during first 6 weeks include:

  • Monitoring at window; providing breathalyzer testing
  •  Reading policies and procedures
  • Practicing vitals on staff

Duties during the first 6 weeks, with lead staff, include:

  • Doing laundry, meal prep/cleanup
  • Observing intake admissions with clients
  • Observing discharges
  • Observing recovery Transitional Outpatient Program at the ARC (TOPA) group

Duties after the first six weeks include more independent contact with clients, which can include any of the duties listed above under “Duties and Responsibilities,” as determined by the volunteers and supervisors.


Volunteer/Intern Services Program
Boulder County Public Health
3450 Broadway, Boulder CO 80304


All volunteers need to review Boulder County's Multicultural Diversity and EEO and Unlawful Discrimination Policies before starting their volunteer assignment.

If you need special assistance to fill out a volunteer application, please contact our Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) Coordinator at 303-441-3525.