Due to the coronavirus (COVID-19) volunteer opportunities are currently on hold. Stay tuned for updates.

A message from our executive director:

Dear Puentes volunteers,

I hope that this message finds you and your family safe and well, especially during these stressful times. As a dedicated volunteer of Puentes de Salud’s work, I am reaching out to share an update on how this global pandemic is impacting our organization and families in the community we serve, as well as the course of action we are taking to address emergent needs.

Since the implementation of efforts to contain the spread of COVID-19 began last week, our staff, providers, and remaining volunteer coordinators have worked hard to rework our systems of health care, educational support, and social services to the community. In the context of the closure of our clinic, we are facing a budget shortfall of up to 20% in the near term. Despite this, we are implementing the use of telemedicine to continue providing crucial healthcare services to our patients with very limited home visits to specific cases. We are also contacting all of the families connected to our educational, arts, and wellness programs to assess their urgent and long-term needs and are working with our community partner organizations to develop further efforts to provide the community with crucial support and supplies.

With the recent closing of all non-essential businesses, many members of our community who rely on our local restaurant industry as their source of livelihood have been deeply impacted. Despite emergency relief efforts to support service-industry workers, many of these critical financial resources are inaccessible to undocumented workers. As community need will be substantial and ongoing, our work as healthcare providers, community advocates, and educators will be critical in ameliorating the effects of this crisis in the years to come. We are working tirelessly in our community emergency relief efforts and to ensure our organization will have sufficient resources to continue providing essential services to our community long-term. We are continuing to reach out to our funders and supporters, and are applying to the PHL COVID-19 Fund as well as other available resources.

Thank you all for your messages of support and solidarity as we have had to close most of our volunteer work and opportunities. As longer-term plans develop, we look forward to re-engaging your volunteer time and support. In the meantime, if you would like to make a donation to support Puentes please visit: www.puentesdesalud.org/donate.

Sending my deepest gratitude to you during this time.

Steven Larson, MD

Executive Director

Volunteer at Puentes

Puentes de Salud attracts more than 500 active student and faculty volunteers from eleven colleges and universities throughout the Philadelphia region. Our comprehensive strategy for improving the health of Philadelphia’s Latinx community draws on volunteers from many disciplines, including medicine, nursing, public health, law, education, and visual arts. This interdisciplinary group learns about important issues in Latinx health, wellness, and education firsthand through supervised volunteer work at our various programs. All volunteer opportunities require an application process. If you are interested in volunteering, please see opportunities below. Contact us with any questions at volunteer@puentesdesalud.org.

Please Note:  In order to provide quality direct service to our community and a quality immersion experience for our volunteers, we are not able to accept visiting or walk-in volunteers,  high-school students, student research proposals, or short-term class project/papers volunteers. 

Professional Volunteers

If you are a provider, physician, nurse, NP, PhD, social worker, or a professional in a field related to our work and would like to volunteer please contact us at volunteer@puentesdesalud.org

In-Service Speaker Series

The Puentes de Salud In-Service training series is a year-long series of lectures focusing on the social determinants of health. The lectures are also a key component of Puentes de Salud’s Escolares program, which exposes volunteers to the social determinants of health through lectures, reflection sessions, and volunteer experiences. The In-Service series focus on issues of community health, health care for uninsured and marginalized populations, cultural sensitivity in health care, and issues relevant to Latinx health. Volunteers from all backgrounds in the Puentes de Salud community are welcome. Presentations are geared towards clinic volunteer students and providers. They are presented in English for one hour from 5:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m. on a Monday or Wednesday. If you or your organization would like to be a guest speaker please email sara.shuman@puentesdesalud.org.

Clinic Opportunities

Undergraduate, Post-bacc, Graduate, Medical, and Professional Students

Positions are limited and applications are competitive. Please apply early. For applicants that do not get accepted into a position, we recommend they apply for a semester or academic year role in a Wellness and Education program before applying to clinic again. Volunteers who have participated in other programs and meet required qualifications receive priority for our more competitive positions.

(Sessions: Year-Round). The Administrative Assistant will provide valuable behind-the-scenes support to our clinic. This position involves calling patients, scheduling appointments, scanning medical files, and managing office needs. Hours are flexible and will allow an opportunity to work closely with Puentes staff, as well as provide an in-depth understanding of the administrative processes that go into running a clinic. Flexible schedule. Eligibility: This opportunity is open to undergrads, post-bacc, graduate students and medical students.

Application Deadlines:

Academic year/Fall: August 25th

Spring: December 20th

Summer: April 25th

Apply here: Administrative Assistant Volunteer Application

(Sessions. Academic Year: September – May; Summer: May – August). See application for specific dates.

Admin/Flow Coordinators take an active role in organizing patient and volunteer flow, managing patient records, and assisting staff, physicians and all providers in the running of the health clinic.​ ​These roles provides coordinators with valuable insight and experience in patient care and navigation, public health and non-profit primary care clinic functions. Eligibility: Available to Post-Bacc and Undergraduate Students. 

Application Deadlines:

Academic year/Fall: August 25th

Spring 2020: December 20th

Summer: April 25th

Apply here: Admin/Flow Volunteer Application

Contact us with any questions: cliniccoordinator@puentesdesalud.org

This position gives students an active role in the process of patient triage care through Intake and Vitals. Students will be responsible for taking vital signs and a brief history when patients first present to clinic, along with the opportunity to shadow and at times interpret patient visits. Students will work closely with Puentes staff and healthcare professionals to ensure the clinic runs smoothly. Students will gain a deeper understanding of cultural sensitivity and social determinants of health that impact vulnerable communities. Further description of the position can be seen on the application.

Eligibility: This position is only to medical students (MD/DO) and physician assistant students in their pre-clinical years. Third and fourth year medical students are encouraged to apply to the Clinical II role.

Schedule: Mondays 12:30 p.m. to 2:30 p.m., Mondays 6:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m.,  Wednesdays, 6:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m., Thursdays 9:30 a.m. to 1:00 p.m.

Application Deadlines:

Academic year/Fall: August 25th

Spring 2020: December 20th

Summer: April 25th

Apply here: Clinical I Volunteer Application

(Sessions. Academic Year: September – May; Summer: May – August). See application for specific dates. The Clinical II Volunteer position provides a great opportunity for third and fourth year medical students (MS3, MS4), PA, dental and graduate nursing students to gain experience shadowing a provider and learning how to conduct a patient interview. Select Medical MS3 and MS4 students are sometimes allowed to conduct the majority of a patient interview and learn how to report back to the provider with their findings. Please note we are unable to accommodate first and second year medical, undergraduate or post-bacc students.

Eligibility: This position is open only to third and fourth-year medical students who speak Spanish fluently and have completed their 3rd year Internal Medicine clerkship.

Application Deadlines:

Academic year/Fall: August 25th

Spring: December 20th

Summer: April 25th

Apply Here: http://Clinical II Volunteer Application (MS3/MS4)

Graduate Student Coordinators

Puentes de Salud has developed a highly organized student coordinator structure. Positions listed below. While there are tremendous rewards, and many opportunities for patient contact in all of these roles, the success of the Puentes Clinic requires a significant amount of time management and communication with fellow coordinators and staff.

Eligibility: Coordinator positions are available to highly responsible and independent graduate, professional, public health, post-bac, medical, and nursing students.  Bachelor’s degree required. Microsoft proficiency required. A minimum of a one-year service term January – January is required. Preference is given to current and previous Puentes volunteers. Advanced Spanish fluency is required for all positions. Note each position may have additional requirements. Positions are limited and competitive, please apply early.  Decisions will be made via email. Contact us with any questions at studentchair@puentesdesalud.org.

Application deadline: December 20th. Apply here: https://forms.gle/2W4N3tMUQAVzwAFB8

  • Recruit volunteers to give patient information sessions in clinic waiting room
  • Oversee development of new charlas and improvement of existing charlas
  • Oversee and maintain the charlas archives
  • Coordinate waiting room talks from other organizations
  •  Ensure that volunteers and providers staff clinic shifts
  • Send weekly reminders to volunteers and providers
  • Work closely with Nurse Liaison and Administrator to identify specific needs and appointments at the clinic
  • Provide clinic support with equipment, administration, and facilities
  • Manage Puentes’ social media presence (Facebook and Twitter)
  • Manage the Puentes de Salud website (puentesdesalud.org) in both English and Spanish
  • Disseminate information within the Puentes community in a timely manner
  • Maintain and update information about Puentes services
  • Support Promotoras with planning community-based projects, outreach, and events
  • Recruit volunteers and organize targeted outreach efforts to strengthen collaboration with the community by taking on special projects
  • Develop and distribute the clinic’s monthly internal newsletter
  • Organize team coherence building activities
  • Work with Puentes’ Assistant Medical Director to meet health system navigation needed by patients
  • Assist in the development of case management programs for complex case patients identified by Puentes providers
  • Supervise volunteers in provision of individual outreach and follow-up care projects
  • Maintain an evaluation of programs and health centers utilized by patients
  • Serve as patient navigator/interpreter/advocate while at reference centers
  • Recruit, train, and support new and current volunteers
  • Respond to inquiries from interested volunteers
  • Keep track of volunteer applications and qualifications
  • Communicate with Puentes programs, outside organizations, community, and other schools for training and outreach

Wellness & Education Opportunities

We recommend that potential volunteers apply early as positions may be limited and applications are competitive. However, if you missed a Wellness and Education program deadline you may contact the program directly to inquire about any remaining open slots.

(Sessions. Academic Year: September – May). The purpose of this position is to give volunteers an opportunity to participate in a team effort to create a sex-ed program for adolescents of the Latinx community. This position gives volunteers an active role in the different aspects of health promotion, reproductive health, and class planning and implementation. The volunteers will work together to develop the curriculum, lead and teach the classes. The volunteers will work closely with parents and children and healthcare professionals to develop this class. This position provides valuable mentorship for those considering or preparing for health professions. Students will gain insight and understanding of the clinical and social determinants of reproductive health impacting the South Philadelphia community. Eligibility & Requirements: This position is open to undergraduates, graduate students, post-bac, nursing and medical students. Individuals must be able to commit several hours per week; remote work is required.

Application Deadlines: Academic year/Fall: August 25th; Spring: December 20th

To apply send a a statement of interest and CV/resume to Dr. Daphne Owen (daphne.owen@gmail.com).

The purpose of the ESOL (English for Speakers of Other Languages) Teacher and Teaching Assistant positions are to take an active role in preparing for and teaching the Saturday ESOL course offered at Puentes de Salud. The ESOL Teacher will work closely with the coordinator and teaching assistants to develop and implement curricula. The teacher is responsible for promoting student learning and ensuring that lesson plans are designed to meet student needs. The TA will have the opportunity to contribute directly to program facilitation, develop an understanding of the social determinants of health impacting our community, and receive valuable mentorship. Teachers and TAs must possess interpersonal skills and an enthusiasm for supporting the education of Latino adults in Philadelphia. Contact esol.puentes@gmail.com

Application Deadlines: Academic year/Fall: August 25th; Spring: December 20th

Click Here to Apply for ESOL Teacher Position Click Here to Apply for ESOL TA Position

(Sessions. Academic Year: September – May; Summer: May – August). Art contributes to the holistic mission of Puentes de Salud by promoting healing through expression and storytelling. The art coordinator and volunteers will work with the artist, children, adolescents, and families to explore culture, identity, empowerment and much more through art. Schedule: Wednesdays 5:30pm – 8:00pm. Sessions are ongoing.

Application Deadlines: Academic year/Fall: August 25th; Spring: December 20th; Summer: April 25th

To apply send a statement of interest and cv to art@puentesdesalud.org.

Click Here for Art Program Coordinator Click Here for Art Program Volunteers

(Sessions. Academic Year: September – May; Summer: May – August). See application for specific dates. Charla volunteers present discussions, or charlas, on a wide range of topics, in the Puentes clinic. The charlas are informative talks in Spanish through which we engage patients to discuss topics that affect the Latinx community in South Philadelphia.  This program exposes volunteers to topics in medicine, public health, and social determinants of health, outreach and addressing a patient population.

Application Deadlines: Academic year/Fall: August 25th; Spring: December 20th; Summer: April 25th

Apply Here: Charlas Volunteer Application

Click Here for Eligibility & Requirements

(Sessions. Academic Year: September – May; Summer: May – August) Summer placements are given priority for academic year participation. Volunteers support our Community Engagement Coordinators with community activities, primarily in the Welcoming Ambassadors program which provides an incredible opportunity for dedicated volunteers to have meaningful roles in helping immigrant families in the Philadelphia community. Welcoming Ambassadors share resources and provide a supportive role for families who have just arrived in Philadelphia within the last year. Eligibility & Requirements: Bachelor’s degree required for Welcoming Ambassadors. Schedule: Flexible, about five hours per month or more if the volunteer needs more hours.

Application Deadlines: Academic year/Fall: August 25th; Spring: December 20th; Summer: April 25th

Apply here:

Welcoming Ambassadors Volunteer Application

Welcoming Ambassador Volunteer Coordinator Description and Application

(Session: October – April) Cohorts run every other academic year: 2019-2020, 2021-2022.  The Puentes de Salud Escolares Program is designed to provide current and future health care professionals with the tools they need to better understand and serve under-resourced communities both locally and globally.  Although the content of this program is primarily focused on gaining knowledge and insight into the Philadelphia Latin American immigrant community, participants in the program will also gain a broader understanding of how social, cultural and environmental factors influence disease, health, and well being. This course will focus on the theoretical and practical study of the social determinants of health and provide participants with the tools to improve their understanding of the community and their interactions with patients. Eligibility & Requirements: Open to all Puentes de Salud volunteers regardless of their academic or career levels.

Application Deadlines: September 25th, 2019

To request an application, please contact Dr. Sara Shuman at sara.shuman@puentesdesalud.org

(Sessions. Academic Year: September – May; Summer: May – August). Our wellness programs offer families the opportunity to take advantage of programming while their children participate in enriching activities. We strongly believe that barriers to childcare should not be an obstacle for families. Our volunteers are crucial to the success and effectiveness of our programs. Early Childcare volunteers will have the opportunity to take an active role in the care and development of children while their parents are on-site and attending a class or workshop. Yoga Volunteers needed Tuesday evenings.

Application Deadlines: Academic year/Fall: August 25th; Spring: December 20th; Summer: April 25th

Applications are accepted on a rolling basis.

To apply send a statement of interest and cv to yoga@puentesdesalud.org.

Click Here for More Information and to Apply

Children’s Education Opportunities

We seek highly motivated individuals from all backgrounds to serve as Tutors/mentors, and Team Leaders in our After-School Program, Summer Camp, Adolescent Programs, and Early Childhood Education Programs at Puentes Hacia el Futuro. Students may use this work to fulfill academic field work, internship, or independent study. See program descriptions and deadlines below.

The After-School Program Academic Year (September – May) allows Tutors and Team Leaders a dynamic experience with students and families in South Philadelphia. Tutoring sessions pair tutors/mentors in small groups with children in grades K-8. While the program focuses on literacy, many academic, social, and cultural topics, activities and events are explored throughout the year. Team Leader at Puentes Hacia el Futuro internship is to take an active role in preparing for, leading, and following up on academic support sessions and educational activities. Sessions Fall mid September -1st week of December; Spring: mid January – 1st week of May. Schedule: 3:15-5:30p.m. on Mondays, Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays. (select one day minimum).

Application Deadlines:
Academic Year/Fall: 1st round: August 25th, 2nd round: September 15th, 3rd round: September 25th
Spring: 1st round: November 25th, 2nd round: December 15th, 3rd round: January 25th

Applicants are accepted on a rolling basis. Applications remain open after the deadlines.

(Sessions: Academic Year September – May) The Early Childhood Education Internship position provides students an unparalleled opportunity to work and learn at both the intersection of research, action, and social justice and at the cutting edge of urban education. The interns will engage with issues of education and equality in a community‐based, multilingual, and transnational context, preparing them as a future leader and expert in their field. We are accepting 12 interns. Experience with young children preferred. Please contact us for more information. Schedule: 8 hours per week. Tuesdays and Thursdays 2:30pm – 6:00pm.

Application Deadlines:
Academic Year/Fall: Priority: August 25th, Final: September 25th
Spring: 1st round: November 25th, 2nd round: December 20th, 3rd round: January 25th

Applicants are accepted on a rolling basis. Applications remain open after the deadlines.

(Sessions: July  – August) See application for specific dates. The Puentes Hacia el Futuro program offers a six-week summer program to 40-50 children who could most benefit from extra support in reaching grade level literacy. Summer student volunteers will have the opportunity to facilitate interactive sessions. Volunteers will have a significant amount of leadership and teamwork responsibility and thus are expected to be highly motivated. The volunteers will be responsible for the daily functioning of the program by leading educational, cultural, and activities and lessons for the children. Volunteers will work closely with educators, and leaders in the Puentes organization and gain an understanding of the social determinants of health and social justice issues impacting our community. This is a special opportunity to learn about and to practice the process of implementation of a public health initiative.  Weekly Schedule: Monday – Friday 8:45am – 4pm (Thursday field trip times vary)

Application deadlines: 1st round: February 25th, 2nd round: March 15th, 3rd round: April 25th

Apply Here: Summer Camp Volunteer Application

Applicants are accepted on a rolling basis. Applications remain open after the deadlines.