At the heart of the success of Jefferson County Mediation Services are the mediation professionals who donate their time and energy to the program on an ongoing basis. The number of volunteer mediators has expanded from just 20 when the program began in 1994, to about 230 today. In 2010 and 2011, they gave a total of 9,642 hours to Jefferson County – an average of 2.9 hours per case.
Our volunteers come from many educational and employment backgrounds and provide a large fund of experience and expertise.They include:
Because this program is so comprehensive and varied, it attracts volunteer mediators across metro Denver and Colorado. Each mediator brings an individual set of talents, personality and experience. Personal traits, aptitudes, training and life experience make each mediator a unique asset to this outstanding service.Each volunteer must complete a 40-hour mediation training course (or equivalent) prior to joining the program, must attend our orientation, and must pass a background check by the Sheriff’s Office.JCMS volunteers share a desire to help citizens to resolve conflict without violence. They also view the program as a credible way to build skills and experience that are recognized by our state’s professional organization, The Mediation Association of Colorado. Mediators commit to serve for one year at a time; however, nearly half of our current volunteers have served for four or more years. Their contributions are immense: without the dedication, skill and hard work of each of these mediators, JCMS could not have attained the remarkable level of quality that it offers today.The community benefits because there is an increasing pool of mediators experienced in the huge variety of cases amenable to mediation. Some of our volunteers have gone on to establish or run community mediation services elsewhere, so the benefits continue to spread, giving citizens a viable alternative to other, more expensive, destructive, and time-consuming, means of conflict resolution (e.g., litigation or fighting).
Our staff consists of a full-time director and four part-time staff. We handle the myriad details involved in running such a large and varied service. Each week we answer or return over 100 calls, open and close over 34 cases, provide information, send referral lists to people who do not qualify for our free services and field inquiries from other agencies. We contact parties to persuade them to try mediation, respond to numerous emails, schedule mediation sessions, and manage our database.With our combined experience and expertise, we serve as a valuable resource for our volunteers, discussing their cases answering their questions, and arranging advanced mediation training for them. We make presentations to other agencies, attend meetings and schedule volunteers to mediate for various judges and magistrates.It’s not just a job to us – we are committed to serving our clients in any way that we can.
100 Jefferson County Parkway Golden, Colorado 80419 (303) 279-6511
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