Basics for Health

Connecting our community with resources to ensure everyone can access health care services.

Are you facing challenges outside the clinic that are affecting your health? Would you benefit from connecting with community resources to address these challenges and support your health? Basics for Health is in place to help make those connections.

What is the Basics for Health Program?

The REACH Basics for Health Program is a referral-based program at the REACH Community Health Centre that works to support the social and economic needs of patients of the REACH Medical, Dental, and Multicultural Family Centre. The program operates with the understanding that the factors affecting a person’s health and wellbeing go beyond primary health care. Volunteers will work with patients to connect them with the appropriate resources in many areas – housing, income security, employment status, food security, child development and social services and more, in order to target underlying barriers to good health.

B4H Volunteers

How Can I Get Support?

A dedicated team of trained and supervised community volunteers is available to support you with meetings your health goals. Depending on your situation you may also be eligible for REACH social work services as well. Please email basicforhealth@reachcentre.bc.ca or ask a receptionist at Medical or Dental to access services.

Want to Volunteer with Basics for Health?

Help improve health outcomes for individuals and families while gaining meaningful and valuable healthcare experience as a Basics for Health (B4H) volunteer at REACH Community Health Centre! Our program holds intakes several times a years, and the next deadline will appear here. For more information contact our Basics for Health Coordinator at b4hcoordinator@reachcentre.bc.ca.

Role Description

In collaboration with healthcare and social service providers, B4H volunteers assist individuals and families with meeting their needs for housing, employment/income security, healthy child development, food security, education and social support as needed. Volunteers will provide support to clients through information and resource provision, referrals, advocacy and follow-up while working with other volunteers to maintain efficient service.

Responsibilities

As a compassionate individual with interest and/or experience in the healthcare setting, you will,

While on shift:

  • Interact with clients, community members, volunteers and staff in a respectful and empowering manner

  • Greet and direct REACH members at the Welcome Desk, engaging them on B4H where appropriate

  • Conduct appointments with clients to provide support and resource referrals in accordance with program policy and procedures

  • Research for resources according to each client’s concerns

  • Consult and debrief with staff regarding challenging interactions

  • Adhere to provincial standards with regards to client confidentiality and privacy

Outside of shift hours:

  • Participate in required skill development training and ongoing sessions as they come up

  • Participate in team meetings (approx. once every 6 months)

Personal and Professional Development

Throughout your involvement with B4H, you will:

  • Gain experience assisting individuals and families with real concerns/needs

  • Contribute to making a significant impact on the health outcomes of individuals and families

  • Become educated about the social determinants of health

  • Receive skills training (communication and interpersonal skills, referral skills, documentation skills, boundary setting)

  • Have exposure to opportunities for networking with healthcare professionals, social service providers and community organizations

  • Obtain a reference letter for academic or employment purposes after satisfactory completion of training and 42 minimum volunteer hours (calculated from Time Commitment listed below: 3.5 hours/shift, 2 shifts/month, 6 months)

*Note: Training hours are considered as a separate requirement to volunteer hours

Requirements/Qualifications:

Reliable, non-judgmental, open to learning, able to share and receive feedback; committed to supporting individuals and families achieve better health outcomes through an empowerment model

Proficient in speaking and writing English – a second language is an asset, particularly Spanish, Vietnamese, Arabic, Farsi, Cantonese, Mandarin, Russian and/or French

Comfortable and competent using computers

Time Commitment:

To volunteer with B4H, you must:

  • Successfully complete our training workshop

  • Complete 2-3 mandatory supervised shifts with a senior volunteer following training.

  • Commit to a minimum of 6 months of involvement

  • Complete at least two shifts per month; volunteer shifts are available from Monday to Friday, 9:30 AM – 1:00 PM and 1:30 PM – 5:00 PM •

  • Attend team meetings (approx. once every 6 months)

  • Attend skill development training opportunities as they come up (e.g. navigating Pharmacare coverage with REACH Pharmacy; inclusion and awareness training, etc.)

Supervision:

  • Volunteers are expected to work independently

  • Support may be available on shift from a peer volunteer, the B4H Coordinator and/or REACH staff

Individuals from underrepresented populations* are especially encouraged to apply. A followup application form will be sent to short-listed applicants

All successful applicants will be required to undergo a Criminal Record Check through REACH Community Health Centre.

*Underrepresented populations are those who are typically underrepresented in the healthcare field, for example, Indigenous people, people with disabilities, refugees and newcomers, and those who identify as LGBT2QIA+. REACH is strongly committed to creating a diverse work environment and encourages applications from the communities we serve.