Volunteering

No matter your skills or interests, there's a way for you to participate in the creation and manifestation of Black Rock City, both at the event and year-round.

Re: Volunteering

Postby Nugget » Sun Jan 15, 2012 12:08 am

This should be my first year going to Burning Man, but I've been going to regionals for several years now and volunteering has been a big part of burning for me. I really enjoy it. I'm definitely going to take it easy this year since it's my first year and I need to take it all in, but I still plan on doing a shift here and there.

I feel like I might be getting ticked into something but pottie patrol sounds awesome.
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Re: Volunteering

Postby lemur » Sun Jan 15, 2012 12:26 am

taking it all in ? good luck with that! burning man aint no regional.. it's big.


i usually suggest people take it easy, not so they can take it all in... but so they dont end up in the med tent.

...another thing setting the burn apart from (most) regionals is the harsh climate.. that shit will kill ya !


be careful out there.
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Re: Volunteering

Postby Nugget » Sun Jan 15, 2012 12:51 am

Yeah, I've heard that as well. Having to get used to the extreme environment. I haven't been in a place quite like it, but I trust my survival skills well enough. And yes, I'm sure it's a very different experience from a regional, can't wait to figure it out. :)
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Re: Volunteering at ESD?

Postby MyDearFriend » Sun Jan 22, 2012 7:38 pm

Hey I did not see a thread on ESD volunteerism, though I did see this in an intro thread:

Savannah wrote:
Black Rock City Emergency Services Department loves RNs and takes volunteers at Station 3 and Station 9. (Center Camp also has a medical station handled by contracted workers).

http://www.brcesd.com/

I've volunteered two years for Medical now, and it's been a wonderful experience.

Other volunteer opportunities (including medical) are collected in this more general link:
http://www.burningman.com/participate/volunteer.html

New volunteers should generally start small (1 or 2 shifts), because Burning Man is physically and emotionally challenging, and you don't know how you'll fare 'til you get there. It's also a pity to have a lot of time constraints on a newbie. :)


Thanks, Savannah, once again for your wonderful guidance. 8) I am an RN, I volunteered for medical for 2012 and I have wormed my way through the ESD system far enough now to get access to the schedules. But :cry: it looks like it's 12 hour shifts, is that right? Yikes! A 12 hour shift is bad enough in a climate-controlled hospital, geez, so I am having second thoughts here. I have been to BRC. I don't think I want to work 12 hours straight in that environment. It might take me 24 hours to recover. :shock:

So really, how does that even work? Or is medical something you do if you are okay not doing anything else?
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Re: Volunteering

Postby lemur » Sun Jan 22, 2012 7:47 pm

12 hours aint so bad if you want to do it.. with breaks for breakfast, lunch, dinner.. it just becomes another day in BRC.

you only choose to work that long if you want to..

if you feel like something else is pulling you away id think youd be better off doing that somethign else..

i frequently do 8-12 hour work shifts at the burn.. as do many others (even outside of medical)..


id rather be washin dishes at burning man all night long than be sitting at home watching star trek reruns.
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Re: Volunteering

Postby theCryptofishist » Sun Jan 22, 2012 7:48 pm

Last I heard it was eight hours.
ESD volunteers--oh crap, I can only talk about my husband, who was bipolar and loved burning through emergency medical services. I couldn't drag him away from it, and he wasn't happy if he couldn't find me right away. (Which is why I didn't really like the burn with him...)
ESD has a chronic shortage of bodies. Maybe that's why they went to 12-hour shifts. Which seems possibly self-defeating to me, but oh well. There is a preference for people who have spent the previous year actively involved in emergency medicine. (EMTs, ER nurses and doctors, for instance.) Last time I had a conversation about it, they had assistants with less robust certs to take names and greet people and smooth out the experience. Ironic, as that was what I did best for them, but it came too late for me.
If you're interested, I'd suggest talking to someone about the shifts. I suppose that the easiest way is to go through the process again and then talking to someone (via email counts) about how rigid that is. Unless you still have the name and email of someone from last year. You can always email them and ninenineone at burningman dot com.
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Re: Volunteering

Postby MyDearFriend » Sun Jan 22, 2012 7:52 pm

Thanks. This is why I am asking. Patient care is different from other work, at least I think it is, because I can't just walk off on break when people need care. And, for obvious reasons, eating or drinking in a patient care area is really a stupid thing to do.

I have been to BRC, so, I don't see how going 12 hours like that could even work.

edit: I did send an email to the volunteer coordinator who's been steering me through this process. If they are so set on RNs with ER experience maybe they will take me for a shorter shift. I dunno, we'll see...
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Re: Volunteering

Postby lemur » Sun Jan 22, 2012 7:58 pm

i would assume (hope!) that the medical folks eat at the commisary .. or at worst have a runner get some to-go meals to eat in a place away from patient areas..



crypto?

are you sure you do not mean 911 at something dot com?

perhaps i am thinking of an email to a different department for a different use?
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Re: Volunteering at ESD?

Postby Savannah » Sun Jan 22, 2012 8:00 pm

MyDearFriend wrote:Hey I did not see a thread on ESD volunteerism, though I did see this in an intro thread:

Savannah wrote:
Black Rock City Emergency Services Department loves RNs and takes volunteers at Station 3 and Station 9. (Center Camp also has a medical station handled by contracted workers).

http://www.brcesd.com/

I've volunteered two years for Medical now, and it's been a wonderful experience.

Other volunteer opportunities (including medical) are collected in this more general link:
http://www.burningman.com/participate/volunteer.html

New volunteers should generally start small (1 or 2 shifts), because Burning Man is physically and emotionally challenging, and you don't know how you'll fare 'til you get there. It's also a pity to have a lot of time constraints on a newbie. :)


Thanks, Savannah, once again for your wonderful guidance. 8) I am an RN, I volunteered for medical for 2012 and I have wormed my way through the ESD system far enough now to get access to the schedules. But :cry: it looks like it's 12 hour shifts, is that right? Yikes! A 12 hour shift is bad enough in a climate-controlled hospital, geez, so I am having second thoughts here. I have been to BRC. I don't think I want to work 12 hours straight in that environment. It might take me 24 hours to recover. :shock:

So really, how does that even work? Or is medical something you do if you are okay not doing anything else?


It's true, all the Medical shifts are either 12 hours, or 8 hours. However, you can just try one 8-hour shift, if you want. You are valuable; you don't have to do a lot of shifts to make them glad to see you. But I'm the last person to say you should or shouldn't . . . how a person spends her time in BRC is very personal. Historically, you don't get to choose shifts until June-ish, so you have a while to think. Check your PMs . . .

(Meals are brought from the commissary; they do feed you while you're on-shift.)
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Re: Volunteering

Postby theCryptofishist » Sun Jan 22, 2012 8:06 pm

D'oh! No, I'm not in the least sure... nineoneone it is.

Food is usually delivered to people on duty, lunch bags, or covered plates. In my day, there was often extra, but I think there's been belt tightening since then. If it's something that you want to do and you find a place they will take care of you in various ways. Food is part of that. If your shift ends at a time when the commissary is open you will get a pog, or whatever the current system is. Of course, both medic and fire camp have meals, so you might be able to cage something better from them.
I think you're better off talking to esd directly, and if personnel is tight in July/August then you might be able to get something that fits better then. (This is an assumption, so I don't know anything, even outdated, in practice.) They won't accept anyone after July 31st, and they check on your certs.
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Re: Volunteering

Postby MyDearFriend » Sun Jan 22, 2012 9:12 pm

Thanks, y'all. I have worked in a lot of different patient care settings, and have never been in one where I could count on getting a meal break. My first and wisest mentor told me, when I was a brand new nurse, to "Always leave the unit at least once a shift." And I always tried to do that, for at least one full minute. :lol: But it did not always happen.

So you see I take this talk of meals and breaks with a large grain of salt. Oh I can easily believe that food would be delivered. But I can also easily believe that the food would be followed immediately by somebody with an urgent need. :lol:

And I never managed to piss clear at the end of a twelve here in my nice hospital, so, on the playa? Hmmmm...

Well, we'll see how this shakes out.
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Re: Volunteering

Postby ygmir » Sun Jan 22, 2012 9:19 pm

well, MDF, knowing the person you are, and the skills you posses, I'm sure anything you did, would be wonderful as relates to the dept.
Perhaps, you could negotiate a shorter shift, and not get "credit"? Just to try it out?
Or, work out a "total hours" thing, where you'd do 4 6 hour shifts, and equal 2 12's?

just some thoughts.
But, ESD would be well served, by your presence.
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Re: Volunteering

Postby MyDearFriend » Tue Mar 06, 2012 6:23 pm

ygmir wrote:well, MDF, knowing the person you are, and the skills you posses, I'm sure anything you did, would be wonderful as relates to the dept.
Perhaps, you could negotiate a shorter shift, and not get "credit"? Just to try it out?
Or, work out a "total hours" thing, where you'd do 4 6 hour shifts, and equal 2 12's?

just some thoughts.
But, ESD would be well served, by your presence.


Sorry I just wandered back to this.

I don't care about credit! I don't even consider that. :P

I have talked to the volunteer coordinator for Medical, she got all my paperwork and says there "might" be some 8 or 10 hour shifts available. I will try one full 12 overnight before gates open, and if that works maybe they will let me work a half shift here & there later in the week? We'll see. I am also signing up for 4 shifts at Ice, those are only 3 hours each though so very manageable. And I personally need ice out there, for my bacon, and I want ice, for my gin and tonics, so... :D yeah. Ice.
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Re: Volunteering

Postby CitizenRandom » Fri Mar 16, 2012 2:15 am

Im a 13 year burner consecutave. I havent a ticket yet- this year was the first time Ive had to apply for low income- I wont know if Ive qualified yet for a bit- I really want to continue my plan to helpith set up and take down which is as important to me as it is to go for that one week-
Some of the departments require early volunteering and the ones Im particularly hoping to work with are of this nature. Can I still volunteer for pre and post Burn work- or do I need that ticket in hand.?

Last year I was also pretty low income but didnt have a computer to follow the shift and change of the tickets- i had faith and found a face ticket in route with a ride share- but my lack of connection and ticket status prevented me from participating in a truely meaningful way- and I fely kinda stupid as well as broke..
Im connected with a lap top this year and struggling to keep up with the changes- filled out the questionaire- tried to send some follow up e-mail and I keep getting bounced. duh...things used to be so easy..
what is the suggestion ?
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Re: Volunteering

Postby trilobyte » Fri Mar 16, 2012 2:18 am

I believe most groups will allow you to sign up without ticket in hand, but you will need a ticket for the event. Check the volunteer page (linked on the main home page of the site) and register there for the department(s) you're interested in. Good luck!
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Re: Volunteering

Postby Rice » Fri Mar 16, 2012 10:10 am

It has been my experience that one needs to have proven themselves in a volunteer department before getting early entry.

IE: Last year I worked X shifts, showed up on time, did a good job... Therefore I am given early entry this year on the condition that I work Y shifts before the gates open and Z shifts during the event.

YMMV
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