Become a Pastoral Care Volunteer

Do you want to become equipped with the skills to provide pastoral care and support to people in your church and local community?

The Volunteers CARE Initiative prepares and equips Uniting Church and Christian denominational volunteers in pastoral care ministry through Courses that Activate volunteers to Respond to the emotional, pastoral and spiritual needs of people Everywhere (C.A.R.E.).

The courses lead to volunteer pastoral care positions with our chaplaincy partners: UnitingCare Queensland hospitals, Blue Care residential aged care homes, Wesley Mission Queensland residential aged care, and Uniting Church Public Hospital Chaplaincy in Queensland.

This training program includes practical placement in a workplace (CARE Matters). The workplace may have a mandatory COVID-19 vaccination policy or be covered by a public health direction requiring students/volunteers in a practical placement to have a current COVID-19 vaccination, including any additional dose (booster). Public health directions in Queensland currently apply to health (e.g. hospitals, aged care services) and education (schools, early learning services) settings.

You will be informed if the workplace has a COVID-19 Vaccination Policy or is covered by a public health direction, and you will be provided with a copy of the workplace policy which will outline how to submit evidence of your vaccination and how to apply for an exemption (including the evidence to support your application). You can not commence your practical placement until your:

  • vaccination evidence has been verified; or
  • your exemption application has been approved and you have agreed to any conditions to the exemption approval.

The Volunteers CARE initiative has been developed through a partnership between the Queensland Synod Chaplaincy Commission and UnitingCare Queensland. The Volunteers CARE Initiative is endorsed by the Synod Chaplaincy Commission as a recognised pastoral care volunteer pathway for the Uniting Church in Australia, Queensland Synod.

Get the training you need

The Volunteers CARE Initiative is comprised of two components—CARE Essentials and CARE Matters.

CARE Essentials is a basic introduction to the general scope of Christian pastoral care designed for use in congregations, faith communities or care facilities. This course can become the beginning step on the pathway to more specialised pastoral care volunteering in various Uniting Church in Australia, Queensland Synod chaplaincy settings.

CARE Matters is a five-stage orientation, induction and training program following on from CARE Essentials. It is designed for use in hospitals and aged care facilities.

For more information, email