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Mar 14, 2016
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Hey there! I turned 16 and looking to volunteer at a hospital quite close to me that has a child/teen mental health area. I've been wanting to pursue a career in psychiatry, especially with teens & children, but would like to try it first. Since my hospital is looking for volunteers I am trying to take this opportunity and apply to help out in that field. The problem is, I don't know if I would be allowed because of my age (16) to be able to work with youth. I don't mind doing small jobs like the carts or meal trays, I just want to see what it would be like to work there.

Thanks for taking the time to read this :)
-Matt
 

Pezistential

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Nov 30, 2008
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Hey there! I turned 16 and looking to volunteer at a hospital quite close to me that has a child/teen mental health area. I've been wanting to pursue a career in psychiatry, especially with teens & children, but would like to try it first. Since my hospital is looking for volunteers I am trying to take this opportunity and apply to help out in that field. The problem is, I don't know if I would be allowed because of my age (16) to be able to work with youth. I don't mind doing small jobs like the carts or meal trays, I just want to see what it would be like to work there.

Thanks for taking the time to read this :)
-Matt
Like Psychotic said, your best bet is to contact the hospital directly. Typically there is an office/person in charge of volunteering. If you can't do it there, there are plenty of other places that would be excited to have a young person volunteer. Good luck!
 
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OldPsychDoc

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My hospital has an active volunteer program that seeks 14-17 year olds, especially in the summer. However, they avoid having them do much in the mental health section, mainly for confidentiality and maturity reasons. (That said, my daughter was allowed to assist in a couple of OT groups on my floor when she was 15--but it was my daughter--so the OTs trusted my assessment that she could handle it.)
 
Mar 14, 2016
3
1
Status
Pre-Psychology
My hospital has an active volunteer program that seeks 14-17 year olds, especially in the summer. However, they avoid having them do much in the mental health section, mainly for confidentiality and maturity reasons. (That said, my daughter was allowed to assist in a couple of OT groups on my floor when she was 15--but it was my daughter--so the OTs trusted my assessment that she could handle it.)
As others suggested, I am going to ask the hospital if I am allowed. How do I ask though? I want to be polite and don't want to seem like im only there for the youth part. I wouldn't mind doing anything else in the hospital either I'd just prefer to volunteer with them. Any suggestions?
 

hamstergang

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As others suggested, I am going to ask the hospital if I am allowed. How do I ask though? I want to be polite and don't want to seem like im only there for the youth part. I wouldn't mind doing anything else in the hospital either I'd just prefer to volunteer with them. Any suggestions?
"Hi, I'm Teemo. I'm a 16 year old high school student. I'd like to volunteer with your hospital. I have an interest in child/teen mental health and would prefer to volunteer in that department. Is that something I'd be able to do?"

It's really that simple. Just state your question.
 
Mar 14, 2016
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Pre-Psychology
"Hi, I'm Teemo. I'm a 16 year old high school student. I'd like to volunteer with your hospital. I have an interest in child/teen mental health and would prefer to volunteer in that department. Is that something I'd be able to do?"

It's really that simple. Just state your question.
"No." - Volunteer Person
jk. Im just nervous they would get mad or something. I dont want to mess up the volunteer chance.
 
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OldPsychDoc

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Most hospitals are going to have an organized process for this, which will likely include being asked at some point "Hey, Teemo, what kinds of things would you like to do?" If they don't do volunteer stuff on mental health, they'll let you know. Maybe you can volunteer there for awhile, get to know the institution, someday say to the volunteer department, "Hey, I had an idea...what if we...?" You never know...
"No." - Volunteer Person
jk. Im just nervous they would get mad or something. I dont want to mess up the volunteer chance.
What are they going to do, fire you?
I know--cut your salary in half!

Relax--go forth and do good.
 
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Mar 24, 2014
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"No." - Volunteer Person
jk. Im just nervous they would get mad or something. I dont want to mess up the volunteer chance.
None of us like to risk rejection. That's okay, you just have to ask anyway. Well, I shouldn't say none, I had a high school friend who seemed immune to this normal human need for acceptance. He was a bit weirder than most. :) You'll do okay. Good luck. Oh and at our hospital they call them volunteens. Kind of cute. :p
 
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