Volunteer Roles

On The Ground

  • 2.5- 3 hour time commitment
  • No vehicle necessary
  • Carpool options available
  • Low physical labor
  • Outdoor Activity

Each shift of on the ground volunteers lasts roughly 2 and a half hours. 

1st shift: 5 PM- 7:30 PM ( 8 on weekends)

2nd Shift: 7:30- 10 PM (8-11 PM on weekends)

Responsibilities on this shift include greeting those being released, aiding in setting up/ breaking down the tent and laying out the supplies, helping to set up rides/ cab fares/ assist in giving directions to folks being released, helping people make phone calls, and handing out amenities like snacks, cigarettes, PPE, etc. On the ground volunteers stay in contact while drivers are out on rides and help coordinate the flow of rides/ pickups of released folks by loved ones while distributing supplies and tending to the needs of those who approach the tent. 

(On The Ground folks are the heart of Jail Support and they show everyone who approaches the tent exactly what we're about.)


  • 2.5- 3 hour time commitment
  • Vehicle needed
  • Low physical labor
  • Ride buddies (a volunteer to drive with you and help navigate) are encouraged and can be arranged
Shifts for drivers mirror the On the Ground schedule:  

Each shift of on the ground volunteers lasts roughly 2 and a half hours.

1st shift: 5 PM- 7:30 PM ( 8 on weekends)

2nd Shift: 7:30- 10 PM (8-11 PM on weekends)

We are now reimbursing drivers for their time/ gas at $1 per mile! We keep you going so you can keep us going!

Responsibilities on this shift include navigating one or more stops for getting people home, making sure each rider has the PPE they need, keeping in contact with the On the Ground team, and helping out with tent setup/ breakdown/ maintenance if it gets busy. 

(Drivers are the badass pilots of the Jail Support team.)

Setup/ Breakdown Van Driver

  • Short time commitment!
  • Medium Physical Labor
  • Regular licensed drivers are qualified! No special license needed! (We can give you a full van driving tutorial!)

Working setup or breakdown for CCJS is an essential and heroic role for our daily operation. In 30 mins or less, you can be responsible for our entire effort living to see another day! 

Setup begins at 4:30, where you will pick up our incredible jail support van from its parking spot by our storage space and drive it (less than 5 minutes away) to our site at Cook County Jail. The first shift crew will help you set up our tables/ supplies. One of the drivers on shift will give you a ride back to your car if you drove to pick up the van! 

Breakdown begins at the end of second shift at 10 pm (11 pm on weekends). Second shift volunteers will help you take down the tables and load all the supplies into the van. Then you will drive the van back to our storage space. 2nd shift drivers will then take you back to your car after the van is dropped off. 

(Setup and breakdown volunteers are angels among mere mortals.)

Off-Site Volunteering

  • flexible time commitment
  • no vehicle needed
  • flexible amounts of physical labor

There are infinite off site volunteering opportunities that keep Chicago Community Jail Support running. Here are just some of the ways to plug in:

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