JV Orientation 2021


What is Orientation? 

Orientation is an essential part of the JV year that offers a chance for you to explore the four values of JVC Northwest, your reasons for joining the program, and your hopes for the coming year. From August 2 (when you arrive in locale) through August 10, we will gather (virtually or locally in person) across our locales to offer space to dive deeper into understanding your identity, the identities of your community mates and how you can grow your connections throughout the year. JV/AmeriCorps members may begin service and orientation to their service site (virtually or in person as dictated by service site) on August 11, 2021.
This year, Orientation will be a combination of:
  • Live Virtual Sessions
  • Learning modules (recorded online and in-person community facilitated)
  • Virtual and socially distant meet ups with your fellow JVs
  • Conversations with your Program Coordinator (PC) and other JVC Northwest Staff
  • Orientation to your locale/new home, setting up your space together, and getting to know your Support People
  • Quiet time for prayer and reflection- independently, in community, and with all JVs
  • Social Gathering, Games, and Fun

Orientation will help your community start your year of service with a common foundation and some important tools and insights to bring to your experience. More information will be shared with you about the logistics of Orientation as we enter the summer months and know more about how the current COVID-19 pandemic is affecting your specific locale and service site. 

Navigate below for more information for Orientation 2021 about when to arrive, what to bring, and what to expect!

Contact your Program Coordinator or Associate Director, JV Program, Sarah Jones, with any questions.

Bookmark this page- later this summer, you will be able to access our Orientation Information Hub below for Orientation specific materials:

Communications from JVC Northwest

Please see below the list of emails that have been sent to 2021-22 JVs and 2021-22 Partner Agencies regarding Orientation:

  • 2021-22 Incoming JV Welcome from Greg Carpinello, Executive Director
  • 2021-22 Incoming JV Orientation Information (for JV/AmeriCorps members)
  • 2020-21 Placement Agreement and Orientation Information (for Site Supervisors and Partner Agencies)

Orientation Theme: Coming Soon!

Check back later this summer for our 2021 Orientation theme!


All JVs should plan to arrive in your locale on Monday, August 2 by 2:00 p.m. We will have community members in locale ready to support you in getting from transportation hubs (most typically airports) to your JV house. If your position requires bringing a vehicle to locale, you can head straight to the JV house at 2 p.m. We will assist you in coordinating access to the house with the Support Community. If you are unsure which transportation center is closest to your locale, please see below and be in touch with questions.  If you will be serving in one of our Alaska locales (Anchorage, Bethel, Juneau, or Sitka), you will receive specific information via email about your travel from the Lower 48 to our locales in Alaska, as flight frequency and timing is unique- please refrain from booking travel until you receive this communication.

Closest Transportation Hub to Your Locale
  • Alaska (note: JVC Northwest will assist with recommended travel logistics and some cost reimbursement for travel from the closest airport in the lower 48 – SeaTac- to Alaska locales)
    • Anchorage: ANC (Ted Stevens Anchorage International Airport)
    • Bethel: BET (Bethel Airport)
    • Juneau: JNU (Juneau International Airport)
    • Sitka: SIT (Sitka Rocky Gutierrez Airport)
  • Montana
    • Ashland: BIL (Billings Logan International Airport)
    • Billings: BIL (Billings Logan International Airport)
    • Missoula: MSO (Missoula International Airport)
    • St. Xavier: BIL (Billings Logan International Airport)
  • Oregon
    • Aloha: PDX (Portland International Airport)
    • Bend: PDX(Portland International Airport)
    • Gresham: PDX (Portland International Airport)
    • Hood River/Odell: PDX (Portland International Airport)
    • Portland: PDX (Portland International Airport)
  • Washington
    • Seattle: SEA (Seattle-Tacoma International Airport)
    • Spokane: GEG (Spokane International Airport/Geiger Field)
    • Tacoma: SEA (Seattle-Tacoma International Airport)
    • Yakima: SEA (Seattle-Tacoma International Airport) or YKM (Yakima Air Terminal)

Luggage Allowances

Getting to our locales will require significant travel for most JV/AmeriCorps members and arrival in locale will likely include carpooling or other ride share option. You are permitted to bring two pieces of luggage to your locale. Be sure your full name and contact information are clearly labeled on all bags. If you are concerned you won’t be able to fit everything in these two bags, you are welcome to mail additional items to your specific JV community. The address for your community will be included in an email from your Program Coordinator in July. Please do not ship anything to your locale that will arrive prior to August 2. JVC Northwest cannot ensure appropriate delivery or pick up of any materials that arrive prior to the start of your service year.

Forms to Complete

Below is a list of everything that is due before you arrive in locale for Orientation. Please note: all forms must be submitted prior to your arrival on August 2; we cannot accept forms once Orientation programming begins. All forms can be accessed online unless otherwise noted.

Forms due June 1:
  • Government Issued ID
  • Criminal History Check Authorization
  • Health Insurance Acceptance/Waiver Form
  • Health Insurance ID (upload a copy if you decline JVC Northwest Insurance)
  • JV Information Form (with emergency contact info, bio, picture, etc.)
  • Medical Form
  • Policy Review & Acknowledgment
    • Code of Conduct
    • Covenant
    • Drug & Alcohol Policy
    • Whistleblower Policy
    • Whistleblower Policy Addendum
Forms due by July 1 (Not yet Available):
  • Travel Form
  • I-9 and W-4 forms (emailed to you directly)

Please keep a copy of the full version of the Code of Conduct for your records. Please note that there will be time for questions regarding the Code of Conduct and Whistle Blower Policy at Orientation.

One Final Task for JV AmeriCorps Members: In July, you will receive an email invitation from the “MyAmeriCorps” Portal. It is essential that you provide an accurate and timely response prior to Orientation.

What to Pack

You will want to pack everything you’ll need for your volunteer year with you- a basic list is below. JV homes are supplied with the basics like furniture, cooking utensils and dishes, towels, sheets, pillows, blankets, books and games (and usually lots of VHS tapes). If there is something that would make your new space feel like home to you, especially as you are settling in, consider if it is reasonable to pack or ship to your locale. Please pack:

  • Passport or other ID documents. If you uploaded a copy of your passport some weeks ago so we could process your background checks, then please bring the passport with you to Orientation. If you did not upload a passport, then David (our Director of Finance and Operations) will be in touch with you about what documents to bring. We must see the physical documents in order to complete your I-9, and we must complete the I-9 before you can officially begin as a JV. So, if you forget to bring the document(s) to your locale, you will have to have someone send it to you by overnight mail.
  • Clothing for service. Prepare to follow the dress code in your position description and pack accordingly
  • Rain gear (many of our locales experience a rainy season)
  • Face Mask(s) and/or Protective Face Coverings
  • Towel, soap, shampoo, toothbrush, toothpaste, deodorant, sunscreen, and any other toiletries or hygiene items you need
  • Flashlight/headlamp
  • Musicians: bring musical instruments
  • At least a month’s supply of medication, if needed; more if headed to a remote locale
  • A small amount of cash for travel and your first few days in locale before your in locale bank account is opened
  • A spare pair of glasses and/or contacts, and a copy of your eyeglasses/contacts prescription
  • Anything that would help your space make it feel more like home- things to decorate your room, a personal mug, etc.

Pre-Orientation Information

Living in Community during COVID 19

Many of you will be traveling from different parts of the country to live in community with one another and your local community. With that in mind, we ask you to be as safe, aware, and respectful as possible when traveling to locale, meeting community mates, and setting up your living space. We invite you to take a deep dive into articles by Black, Indigenous, People of Color (BIPOC) journalists covering the pandemic and how it is disproportionately impacting communities of color across the country. Additionally, since many of you will be serving high risk populations at your placement, it is important to understand what it means to support those communities/agencies/clients/students during a health crisis. You can start here.

While you prepare for your travels and living in community, we ask you to reflect on these questions:

  • What are my non-negotiables in terms of handling this pandemic? (ex: I am not comfortable going to a restaurant)
  • What can I do to practice self-care? (see Trauma Stewardship Institute guide for ideas)
  • How have people around me chosen to handle living/working/being during this pandemic? How has that impacted my behavior/beliefs?


JVC Northwest is continually investing in efforts to become a more equitable organization, which affects all aspects of our programming, including the Jesuit Volunteers (JVs). You can find more information about JVC Northwest’s equity work here. We hope that JVs are learning about themselves, others, and how to engage others more equitably not only this year, but for a lifetime. We will begin these discussions at Orientation, so here are some opportunities to help you indicate what feels important for you to share with community mates at Orientation, as well as areas in which you are still growing.

  1. Reflection Activity: “Ten Closest Friends” Additional Years (AYs) may recall this activity from the previous year, and we ask you to engage with this activity again to reflect on the identities you hold and the identities of the people you engage with most (has this changed in any way from a year ago?). All JVs, please complete the activity and think through these reflection questions:
    • What perspectives and identities are you bringing into this year?
    • How could your community support you and your identities? What requests could you make for support?
    • How do your identities connect with the history of your locale?
    • Where is your perspective limited? In recognition of this, what are some actions you can take in the year ahead?
  2. A Diversity & Social Justice Terminology guide. This is a glossary of terms and concepts that you can expect to hear both at Orientation and throughout the JV year. Consider whether there are any terms or concepts that are unfamiliar to you, and if so, how you might seek a better understanding of them. Reach out to your PC if we can help you with this process in any way!

For some, if not most, JVs, this is the first time volunteers will be engaging with their locale in this capacity. An important piece of the equity puzzle is acknowledging the Indigenous land we occupy. “It is important to understand the longstanding history that has brought you to reside on the land, and to seek to understand your place within that history. Land acknowledgements do not exist in a past tense, or historical context: colonialism is a current ongoing process, and we need to build our mindfulness of our present participation,” Northwestern University. Acknowledgement by itself is a small gesture, but when practiced with authentic relationships and informed action, it becomes meaningful. Take time to learn about your locale’s history, including its Indigenous peoples.

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