Carpenter's Shelter Desk


... for the rendering of this ministry not only supplies the needs of the saints but also overflows with many thanksgivings to God. -2 Corinthians 9:12

Carpenter's Shelter Reception Desk

Volunteers help at the reception desk to relieve Carpenter's Shelter case workers from having to answer phones and screen visitors which allows the staff to concentrate on providing direct services to clients.

Volunteers also provide residents with a friendly connection to the community.

Ministry Needs:

Friendliness and good customer service skills are needed to provide a friendly face and interaction with residents, answer phones, and take messages, screen everyone who enters the building at the reception desk, log in over the counter medicine use, and hand out toiletry items from the supply closet during designated hours.

Volunteers must be able to maintain the confidentiality and comfort level of school age residents of the shelter. All reception desk volunteers must be eighteen years or older. To find out if this ministry is for you, request to be an alternate. If you like this ministry, you can take the volunteer orientation at Carpenter's Shelter.

Training Provided:

All volunteers go through a basic orientation about Carpenter's Shelter that includes confidentiality issues, security, and other volunteer opportunities. Specific training for the reception desk is on site.

Meetings and Time Required:

Volunteers contribute their time in two or four hour shifts at Carpenter's Shelter at 930 North Henry St. in Old Town, Alexandria. Shifts are from 7:00 to 9:00 a.m.; 9:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m.; 1:00 to 5:00 p.m.; 5:00 to 9:00 p.m.; and 9:00 to 10:00 p.m.

Scheduling and monthly calendars are handled via email. Please provide an e-mail address in your request to volunteer. If you do not have email, please include a phone number. Volunteers can request a regular shift once or twice a week or elect to be an alternate who fills in as needed. We are especially in need of regular fifth Friday volunteers who can commit to a time slot in months that have a fifth Friday and alternates who can volunteer for shifts during the holidays and summer months.


You will meet some great people including residents, staff, and volunteers; make a difference to your neighbors without doors; learn about other opportunities to alleviate homelessness in Alexandria; and know you have made a difference in your community.

The time at the front desk is sometimes chaotic, but often there is time to read or talk to residents or staff.

Who Can I Contact to Find Out More or To Get Involved?

Contact the Carpenters Shelter Reception Desk Coordinator, Courtney Bishop at 703-548-7500, x205 or send an email to information