Rights & Responsibilties of Volunteer Mediators

What CMP Expects of Volunteer Mediators

CMP expects volunteer mediators to give a high level of service for people who are in conflict, and sometimes in crisis. Volunteers will implement the heart of CMP’s mission of reducing violence and increasing the use of nonviolent conflict resolution strategies. In addition, mediators are learning valuable skills via a training costs about $30,000 to execute (and many companies and schools charge between $1500 and $2000 per trainee). CMP requires that volunteer mediators maintain good standing by completing the following activities.

Before Training

  • Prospective volunteer mediators must attend an interest meeting to learn about CMP’s background, the requirements for training, and expectations for volunteering.
  • Prospective volunteer mediators will interview with appropriate CMP staff and sign a contract showing their commitment to completing volunteer mediator requirements.

Training Period

  • Prospective volunteer mediators must attend CMP’s 50-hour training course, five hours of which will follow a three month apprenticeship period.
  • The apprenticeship period consists of observing two mediations, co-mediating two mediations with an experienced mediator, and then completing a strategy session (a skill building session with recent co-mediators and staff). New trainees are considered apprentices until the completion of the apprenticeship.

Volunteer Service

  • In exchange for receiving free mediation training, volunteers must complete 120 hours of volunteer service over the course of one year. Volunteer service hours may consist of:
    • Mediation sessions (except those conducted during the apprenticeship period);
    • Community outreach such as participation as a CMP representative in parades, street theater, or presentations;
    • Board of directors participation or committee service;
    • Participation in trainings as a training assistant;
    • Leading a training session (following completion of a �train-the-trainer� course); or
    • Other activities in furtherance of the CMP mission.
  • Each year, volunteer mediators must complete the following continuing education activities:
    • 12 hours of in-service training, and
    • At least one strategy session.
  • Volunteer mediators must have a strategy session at least once each year and at the request at the volunteer mediator.
  • Volunteers must complete at least six mediations each year.
  • Volunteers may request a leave of absence for up to three months within a one-year period unless extraordinary circumstances exist for which more time may be granted.
  • For those who do not volunteer regularly (i.e., close to 10 hours per month) before his/her 120 hours are complete:
    • The volunteer and CMP staff will hold a conversation to discuss expectations and barriers to fulfilling his/her commitment and develop a plan to meet those expectations within a two-month trial period.
    • Within the two months, the volunteer must demonstrate a concerted effort to meet the expectations in the plan. If they show a satisfactory attempt within the 2-month period, they will remain in good standing with the program.
    • If they do not show a satisfactory attempt in fulfilling their commitment, then they will be charged $795 for the training at a pro rated rate and their name will be taken off the mediator list.
    • Mediators who have completed their 120 hour requirement and do not keep up with program requirements will be called volunteers rather than mediators. Volunteers will remain on the volunteer list but will not mediate. If they wish to resume mediating for the program, they must complete a strategy session to determine necessary actions to prepare to mediate again.What Volunteer Mediators Can Expect From CMP
  • Honest and respectful feedback about each mediator’s strengths and areas for growth.
  • A respectful, positive, and fun program environment in which to help create peace in Baltimore.
  • Fifty hours of basic training and an apprenticeship which consists of:
    • observation of two complete mediations;
    • mediation of two cases with an experienced co-mediator; and
    • a strategy session.
  • A letter of completion after finishing the fifty hours of basic training.
  • A certificate of completion after finishing the apprenticeship.
  • A certificate of completion after volunteering the required 120 hours.
  • Semi-annual volunteer appreciation parties to which mediators, their friends, and families will be invited and at which mediators will be recognized for receiving their letters and certificates.
  • Opportunities to participate in mediations
  • Opportunities to volunteer with CMP through: street outreach, festivals, parades, volunteer mediation coordination, office help, fundraising, committee service, training and much more. q Opportunities to practice skills through mediations, role-plays, refresher trainings, in-services and observations of mediations.
  • Individual mentoring and strategy sessions.
  • Individual assistance for those having difficulties in fulfilling volunteer expectations through conversations with CMP staff, planning sessions, and official notification before name is removed from mediation list.
  • Possibility of a leave of absence of up to 3 months during a one-year period without loss of active status. In case of unusual circumstances, a longer leave may be granted.
  • Help in regaining skills and status as an active mediator after a leave of absence or a period of inactivity. This will include a 12-hour refresher training offered twice a year.
  • Opportunities to play a role in policy development for the program through participation in the Policy Committee, general policy discussions, and through feedback given to the program.
  • Letters of recommendations to employers or others giving statistics on what the mediator has done for CMP (number of mediations, numbers of volunteer hours, types of training). A formal summary of strengths and areas for growth based on strategy-session reports can bee included if both the volunteer and CMP staff agree. CMP staff needs at least a two-week notice for such letters.