Frequently Asked Questions

How long is the commitment to the program?
The commitment is one school year, August thru June.

Can graduates volunteer for half of the year if they graduate in December?
No, since placements will follow a school year.

Would this program allow a recent graduate to defer their loans?
Yes, this is usually possible.

What costs are associated with the program?
The following are provided for the volunteers: housing, food, health insurance, transportation to job  sites, transportation and fees to retreats and program sponsored activities. Volunteers will be provided a monthly personal stipend.

How do volunteers cover travel expenses to Detroit?
Assistance for travel expenses can be provided based on volunteer need. There will also be support for long distance travel from Toronto to the volunteer site.

What do the communal living arrangements look like?
The living arrangements may be coed. Each person is provided their personal living space in a house located within the served community.

What does community living involve?
Community living involves shared chores, meals, reflections/prayer, and decision making. Volunteers are expected to participate in the life of their respective communities/neighborhoods as well as be active with other volunteer groups in the area. The group meets regularly and makes policy via consensus on issues such as hospitality to guests, use of the vehicle, and general scheduling.

A single vehicle will be shared. Volunteers in Southwest Detroit are encouraged to bring bikes since the area is bike friendly.

Will volunteers have their own classrooms?
A variety of placements are possible. Volunteer responsibilities may include teaching, tutoring, teacher support, and campus ministry.

What are the daily hours for this program?
In addition to placement commitments, volunteers must be prepared to put in planning time each day to insure quality work.

What sort of faith-based activities would an applicant have to be comfortable with?
This year is intended to be a year of spiritual growth with reflection, prayer and retreats supported regularly by the Basilian Volunteer Teaching Corps committee.

What is the policy on school vacations?
Volunteers are free during school vacations such as Thanksgiving, Christmas and Easter.

What are the student demographics in Southwest Detroit?
According the 2010 census data, more than half (51.5%) of children in Southwest Detroit lived in poverty. 30.6% of households make less than $15,000/year. 22.8% make $50,000 or more, with the rest evenly distributed in between. The share of residents without a high school diploma, 46.6%, is twice the city average. Only 4.1 % responded that they had received at least a Bachelor’s degree. Although Southwest Detroit neighborhoods have experienced large outflows of whites, Asians and Native Americans over the decade, in favor of an increasing Latino population, it has maintained a relatively diverse population. The Latino population accounts for the majority of the population at 57.2%. African Americans represent 23.6%, followed by whites at 16.9%.