Can running with those experiencing homelessness really change your life? Come find out.
Back on My Feet recruits members at homeless and residential facilities across the country and begins with a member's commitment to run three days a week in the early morning. After 30 days in the program, members with 90% attendance earn the opportunity to move into the second phase of the program called Next Steps, which provides education, employment and housing opportunities.
Our members don’t accomplish this regimen alone. They do it alongside the support of volunteer runners like you.
What’s the Commitment? Volunteers meet in the early morning at one of our locations and run between one and five miles with our members. Back on My Feet sees different physical abilities among members so we encourage all runners, joggers and walkers to become a part of our growing community. We run every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday, but the desired volunteer commitment is once a week. If you fall in love with the team (which, we think you will) then join us as often as you'd like.
Can I Help Lead a Team? Of course! Each team has a "core" group of volunteers, people who take on additional responsibilities to help Back on My Feet staff make sure the team is fully functional and organized. Let our program staff know if you are interested in assuming one of these roles.
Core Team Volunteer Roles:
- Team Leaders: facilitate morning runs by starting and finishing on time, making sure everyone is clear where to run, and making sure other feel supported. They support the other Core Team members, send out weekly emails, recognize new members, run the monthly Team Meeting, and communicate any cancellations or changes in location of the morning runs to the team.
- Team Organizers: track the member attendance, mileage and input the data into our online database.
- Race Coordinators: recruit members to sign-up and participate in monthly races and ensure there are enough volunteer drivers to transport members outside the downtown Indianapolis area.
- Volunteer Coordinators: track the attendances of volunteers, welcome new volunteers to the circle, send out emails to new volunteers, assist with ideas to recruit and retain volunteers and plan volunteer appreciation events.
- Team Coach: provide training plans and routes for the morning runs, works with individual Members to set and achieve goals, creates and implements indoor workouts for cold mornings, and works with other Back on My Feet Coaches to plan Saturday runs.
- Social Coordinators: plan monthly socials (i.e. ice cream social, movie nights, trivia nights, picnics, etc.), communicate plans at Team Meetings, collaborate with other Social Coordinators to plan all chapter events.
Do I Need to Do Anything Before Coming Out? Yes! Everyone interested in volunteering with Back on My Feet is asked to attend a 60-minute orientation. At orientation, we talk about our program and mission, discuss issues surrounding homelessness, elaborate on the role of our volunteers and answer questions. We will equip you with all the information needed to get started with a Back on My Feet team, and by the time we finish, you'll be ready (and eager) to get running!
Where Are the Runs?
- Hoosier Veterans Assistance Foundation (HVAF) of Indiana, Inc. - 964 N. Pennsylvania Street; Team Leaders- Emily Breeden and Ron Poe, 5:45 AM, MWF
- Wheeler Mission Ministries - 205 E. New York Street; Team Leader-Dave Jose, 5:45 AM, MWF