Volunteers Make the AFHE Convention Possible!

Run almost entirely by volunteers, the Arizona Homeschool Convention hosted by AFHE is a great success due in large part to the amazing men and women who serve. Our volunteers help keep costs to a minimum while providing an excellent conference for our community. We are thankful to each and every volunteer who works so hard to make this event possible!

Volunteering at the AFHE Convention is a lot of fun, too! Many of our volunteers eagerly await the opportunity to sign up to help at the Convention. We appreciate each of our volunteers and pray you are blessed as you serve others and help make this event a wonderful experience for all!

VOLUNTEER QUESTIONS: conventionvolunteers@afhe.org

NOTE: The 2021 Convention Volunteer Application will open April 16.

Check back here early April for job descriptions and details. 

 

THINGS YOU NEED TO KNOW

You are important! The AFHE Convention and your fellow attendees need you. Thank you for serving.

As a convention volunteer, you are an ambassador for AFHE and homeschooling. We serve a diverse community and every person matters. The AFHE culture of service is one of kindness, compassion, and treating people with respect and honor, regardless of our differences.

When issues arise, you might be the first contact. You have the opportunity to be a peacemaker and to defuse the situation. Smile. Be kind. Help calm things down by being calm yourself.

We are in a new venue this year!  Prior to serving, review where things are in the Arena, Practice Gym, and the workshop buildings and what’s in the program. People will ask you questions as a volunteer … things like where the restrooms are, where to buy recordings, where to find the exhibit hall map, where the nursing moms lounge is located, etc. You don’t have to have all of the answers, but be prepared to answer some of the most commonly asked questions that people might ask.

 

Things to Know

If you have signed up for 5+ volunteer hours to earn free admission, go to Volunteer Check-in at the right end of the Registration counter island when you arrive. Do not stand in the pre-registration line.

  • Check in as soon as you arrive at the Arena  to let the Volunteer Coordinator and her team know you’re there
  • It’s worth repeating: Do not go to the pre-registration line
  • Pick up your name badge envelope, program, and welcome bag at Volunteer check-in

Arrive 10 minutes before your scheduled time to work

  • We need you. Please do not be late. We do not have extra volunteers waiting in the wings.
  • Set an alarm on your phone if needed to help you arrive on time.

Contact the Volunteer Coordinator immediately if you are going to be late or cannot make it 

  • We are counting on you, but we do realize that things outside your control can happen on occasion such as sickness, traffic accident, etc.
  • If you are going to be late or are unable to make it, please contact the Volunteer Coordinator by cell phone – call or text. She will share her cell number with all registered volunteers by email through SignUpGenius.
  • During the convention, we will not be able to check email Thursday, Friday, or Saturday more than once a day. It is a very busy weekend for our team and we don’t want to miss connecting with you, so please use the cell phone number provided for volunteer-related issues or the AFHE voicemail number for other issues.

Read the Dress Code, Code of Conduct, and Job Descriptions

  • Business casual, modest dress
  • Review the Code of Conduct – focus on homeschooling and avoid promoting other education options while at the AFHE Convention, no promotion of your own business or service, no discussion of political candidates or issues, etc.
  • Review the job description(s) for the jobs you’ll be doing. And you will receive job-specific instructions when you check in.
JOB DESCRIPTIONS

The following volunteer opportunities at the AFHE Convention may be filled by qualified adults (homeschooling parents, graduated homeschool parents, or homeschool grads). All volunteers should plan on arriving at assigned positions at least 10 minutes before your scheduled time to serve.

QUESTIONS: conventionvolunteers@afhe.org

IMPORTANT: Please make childcare arrangements

If you are bringing your children with you to the convention, please make arrangements with your spouse or a friend to care for them during the hours you are scheduled to volunteer. The volunteer positions we have available are not a family volunteer opportunity.

REGISTRATION VOLUNTEERS

Registration volunteers assist convention attendees with on-site registration, working under the direction of the On-Site Registration Coordinators, and are responsible for the following:

  • Process on-site registrations (detailed direction will be provided at the convention).
  • Hand out welcome bags, convention programs, and name badges.
  • Direct any questions, issues that need to be resolved, membership inquiries, etc. to the on-site registration coordinator.

Preregistration Friday morning

  • Preregistration volunteers must be physically able to stand the entire shift. There is not space behind the preregistration table for chairs.
  • Absolutely no children behind the preregistration tables.

WORKSHOP HOSTS

Workshop hosts are staffed in each general session workshop room during the convention. Most workshop rooms will have two workshop hosts. The Antelope Gym will have three workshop hosts during the keynote sessions and two hosts the rest of the day.

Each workshop room will have a clipboard for the workshop host that will include a detailed checklist for you to follow. Workshop hosts should arrive at the workshop room 15 minutes before the workshop is to start.

IMPORTANT NOTE: As a workshop host, you will get to hear some of the speaker’s presentation, but you will be working most of the session. Workshop hosts will not have time to sit and take notes during the session.

Workshop hosts are responsible for the following

  • Greet attendees, help them find seats, encourage them to move in as the room fills.
  • Close the doors once the session has begun and most people have made it into the room.
  • About 30 minutes into the workshop, count the total number of people in the room and record attendance on the workshop host checklist.
  • Be attentive and available throughout the workshop in the event the speaker needs something during their session.
  • Facilitate successful recording of the workshop by kindly and thoughtfully asking parents with fussy/noisy babies/children or individuals talking on their cell phone to step out into the hall.
  • Workshop hosts will hold up time cards for the speaker during the last 10 minutes of the session to let the speaker know how much time they have left (time card signs will be provided).
  • In regular workshop rooms (lecture halls), workshop hosts will sit in designated outside aisle seats at the front and back of the room. In the Antelope Gym, one workshop host will sit in the front row to hold up time cards for the speaker and the other will sit in a chair towards the back on the side by the doors.
  • Turn in the completed workshop host checklist to the Volunteer Coordinator immediately following the workshop.
  • Name badges are required for access to all areas of the convention, including the workshops. Workshop hosts should direct anyone without a name badge to Registration in the lobby to register and obtain a name badge.
  • Due to space limitations and safety issues related to the theatre-style lecture halls, strollers will be limited to a few stroller parking spots in the FRONT of each workshop room. Once those spots are filled, strollers must be parked in the hallway or at the AFHE Book Check and Stroller Parking booth just inside the exhibit hall. (Strollers are fine in the ballroom, hallways, and exhibit hall.) Wheeled carts should be checked at the AFHE Book Check and may not block aisles.

ANNOUNCEMENTS: Workshop hosts will NOT be required to give the announcements or introduce the speakers. If fear of public speaking has kept you from volunteering as a workshop  host in the past, we have eliminated this obstacle.

SPEAKER BOOTH HOSTS

All booths in the exhibit hall must be staffed from 10:00 AM – 6:30 PM Friday and 10:00 AM – 5:30 PM Saturday. AFHE schedules volunteers to staff speaker booths while they are speaking and during lunch.

  • Booth hosts make it possible for speakers to focus on teaching their workshops while their booth is being manned.
  • Booth hosts may be responsible for selling the speaker’s products or may be instructed by the speaker or speaker’s assistant to simply staff the booth until the speaker returns from their workshop.
  • Booth hosts do not need to have all of the answers. Your primary responsibility is to make sure the speaker’s booth is not left unattended.
  • Some speakers travel with their spouse or an assistant, others do not. You may or may not be staffing the speaker’s booth alone. At times booth hosts may be assisting the speakers themselves when the speaker is not teaching a workshop.
  • If the speaker or speaker’s spouse or assistant is in the booth while you are serving, please remember that you are there to serve and assist the speaker, making it possible for them to talk to and assist attendees who approach their booth. This is not an exclusive opportunity for you to visit with the speaker, although that opportunity may arise during a lull, which is fine. Booth hosts are there to serve, not to monopolize the speaker’s time. Convention attendees outside of the booth should have priority in asking questions of the speaker.
  • Booth hosts should remain at the speaker booth they are assigned to until the next booth host has arrived and you have given them all of the instructions the speaker has left for his/her booth, or earlier if you are released by the speaker or speaker’s spouse or assistant.

GREETERS

Greeters are needed Friday and Saturday mornings to welcome and direct attendees as they arrive at Grand Canyon University. Greeters must be friendly and also confident, able to respond with grace under pressure during a very busy, hectic time of day. Greeters will be stationed in various places to welcome attendees, ask whether they pre-registered, and direct them to the appropriate spot to check in. Greeter volunteers should be prepared to spend their shift outdoors where there may or may not be shade available; we will endeavor to limit these shifts to one hour. Please bring a hat or umbrella, water, and sunscreen.

ANTELOPE GYM USHERS FOR KEYNOTES

Friday and Saturday mornings during the keynote, we will need three or four adults who will be stationed at key spots in the gym to help attendees find seats in the chairs of the bleachers for the keynote. At least two of the ushers should be men. Ushers must be friendly and also bold enough to deal with any challenges that arise in a calm, confident manner. Ushers will also assist the workshop hosts in addressing noisy/fussy babies/children by kindly and thoughtfully asking them to step out into the lobby until their child has quieted to assist with recording quality and also not to be a distraction to those around them.

BUY IT HERE! RECEIPT CHECKERS

AFHE is hosting our Buy It Here! promotion again this year. The purpose is to encourage on-site shopping from our exhibitors. For every $25 an adult attendee spends at an exhibitor booth, they receive one entry in a drawing. AFHE will be awarding four $100 cash prizes plus giving out prizes donated by our exhibitors. Between 1:00 and 4:45 PM Saturday, we need volunteers to check and total receipts and give out tickets for the Buy It Here! promotion.

THURSDAY LOAD-IN CREW

The vendors and exhibitors will arrive on Thursday afternoon to set up their booths in our two exhibit hall spaces. We will need plenty of volunteers (especially men ages 16+) who can help unload vehicles, transport materials from the loading zones to the vendor booths using carts and dollies, and direct traffic as we welcome and serve our exhibitors.

BUILDING MANAGER

The spaces we are using at Grand Canyon University are spread across several buildings, so it will be necessary to have a volunteer who is designated for each area to be the point of contact for that building, assist workshop hosts and speakers, answer questions for attendees, and relay building-related concerns to the facility coordinator or convention director. This person will monitor all convention-related activities in his or her building, and will be asked to serve that building for at least one full day of the convention (maximum of two managers per building/area over the weekend). This position could be shared by a married couple or two friends who will make sure the position is covered at all times during the workshop schedule. The active times for this position will be primarily during the breaks between sessions, and it will probably be possible to attend portions of workshops in “your” building once the session is underway.

**This is a new position specific to our new venue, so it is important to be prepared to be flexible and responsive to those things we can’t anticipate. This position must be filled by volunteers who have volunteered for the AFHE Convention before in some capacity and are familiar with the event.

DRESS CODE

We expect all of our volunteers to dress in a professional, modest manner. You will be representing AFHE and the homeschooling community in general. For this reason, and because attendees at the conference share a wide variety of convictions about clothing, we ask that all volunteers follow a dress code. Please come dressed in business casual attire each day that you are scheduled to volunteer.

THURSDAY LOAD-IN VOLUNTEERS: You might be working indoors or outdoors, around moving vehicles and equipment and boxes of materials. This is potentially a physically demanding job and you will probably get dirty. Wear jeans or shorts, t-shirt with sleeves, and closed-toe shoes; we also suggest that you bring a hat and a water bottle.

LADIES:  Slacks or a skirt with a nice top are preferred. Nice jeans, without shred/holes, or capris are acceptable.

MEN: Slacks with a button-up shirt or polo shirt are preferred. Nice jeans are acceptable.

WHAT NOT TO WEAR: Please do not wear shorts, short skirts, tank tops, blouses with cleavage or midriff showing, clothing that is too form-fitting or revealing. No t-shirts unless serving as part of the Service Team crew.

CODE OF CONDUCT

 We expect that all of our volunteers will conduct themselves in a polite, professional manner. It is a great blessing and a joy to be able to serve one another at this event and we expect that our volunteers will be cheerful, helpful, and ready to serve, treating all attendees with care and respect.

AFHE exists to inspire parents to home educate their children; promote parent-directed home-based education; preserve the freedom to homeschool; and support parents who choose a home-based education option for their children. While you are serving at the AFHE Convention, we ask that your conversation and comments focus on supporting this vision as well. If there are questions about education options, please feel free to direct people to homeschool@afhe.org or to the Mentoring Moms booth during the Convention.

In addition, volunteers are not permitted to promote their own businesses or endeavors at the AFHE Convention. While you are serving, your sole focus is on your role as a workshop host, booth host, registration volunteer, etc.

The AFHE Board of Directors operates from a Christian perspective and biblical worldview and makes decisions from the ethical and moral standards established in the Bible. Convention volunteers must support this philosophy.

Volunteers must not be involved in any illegal or unethical activity and cannot have ever been convicted of a felony. If the volunteer’s situation changes and you become involved in any activity that would reflect negatively on the homeschool community or AFHE, you agree to notify AFHE immediately.

REQUIREMENTS

We are looking for mature, responsible, reliable adults to volunteer in a variety of positions at the AFHE Convention including workshop hosts, registration volunteers, booth hosts for speakers, and more.

Current AFHE membership is required. The opportunity to volunteer is a benefit of membership. If you are not a current* member, please join or renew before registering for the Convention. Free admission for those volunteering 5+ hours does not  include membership. (*Membership expiring August 1, 2021 or later is required.)

Volunteers must be willing to comply with the dress code, code of conduct, and any instructions provided by the Volunteer Coordinator or Convention Director.

EXHIBITOR VOLUNTEERS - CLARIFICATION

A number of our convention exhibitors enlist the help of homeschool moms and dads to assist with running their booths. Please note that exhibitor volunteers are not volunteering for AFHE and do not qualify for free admission through AFHE regardless of the number of hours worked.  Exhibitors may offer their own incentives to parents who volunteer in their booths, but free convention admission is not available through an exhibitor company.

Each exhibitor receives a certain number of name badges with their booth space rental, and they must use those name badges or purchase additional badges for their volunteers. Every person working in a booth must have an exhibitor name badge. Please note: an exhibitor badge is not a convention admission badge.

Therefore, for example, if a wife volunteers for several hours for an exhibitor at their booth, the wife will receive an exhibitor name badge from the exhibitor, but neither spouse recieves free convention admission because the wife is not volunteering for AFHE.

Contact us with questions or for clarification at convention@afhe.org.

VOLUNTEER BENEFITS

FREE ADMISSION: SERVING FIVE HOURS* OR MORE

Volunteers that commit to working 5 hours* or more can receive free admission to the convention.

*A husband and wife may split the hours, but will be scheduled for six hours (instead of five as for an individual volunteer).

NOTE: Free convention admission does not include AFHE membership, children or teen admission, teen program fee, parking, food, etc. Free convention admission for AFHE volunteers does include free spouse admission. Free spouse admission only applies to AFHE volunteers. Those volunteering for an exhibitor are handled differently. See additional information in the Exhibitor Volunteers section above.

FREE WORKSHOP RECORDING: SERVING LESS THAN FIVE HOURS

Volunteers that work less than 5 hours will receive a voucher to receive a free workshop recording of their choice for each hour served. Recording vouchers must be redeemed at the Resounding Voice counter in the lobby by 5:00 PM Saturday, July 17, 2021.

2021 APPLICATION

If you are interested in volunteering at this year’s convention, please follow these three easy steps.

1. COMPLETE THE VOLUNTEER APPLICATION (application open April 16, 2021)

2. GET SCHEDULED

The Volunteer Coordinator will contact you to get you scheduled. After receiving your completed Volunteer Application, the Volunteer Coordinator will work with you to get you on the schedule. We are using SignUpGenius for signing up for your jobs and times.

3. REGISTER FOR THE CONVENTION

Once you are scheduled for 5+ hours, our Registration Coordinator will email you with your coupon code and registration instructions for registering yourself and your family for the Convention. Please register as soon as possible after you are scheduled.

If you are planning to work less than 5 hours and are not working for free convention admission, you will register for the convention without a coupon code. You will still need to complete an application and get scheduled as described in #1 and #2 above.

IT MAY TAKE UP TO A WEEK TO RECEIVE THE SIGN UP GENIUS LINK

Our Volunteer Coordinator works hard to reply to email inquiries and to process volunteer applications in a timely manner. Due to her schedule, it may take a week or so to follow up with you.

AFHE Service Team – Homeschool Teens and Grads

Do you have a teen ages 14+ or a homeschool graduate who enjoys volunteering? The AFHE Service Team is a fun way for graduates and older teens to enjoy the AFHE Convention and help make it a great success, too! We have a separate application and scheduling process for the Service Team.

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