Volunteers in Police Service


In 2012, the El Cerrito Police Department began a volunteer program in conjunction with the national organization, Volunteers in Policing. The program partners citizens and police in support of crime prevention and community policing efforts. As an El Cerrito Police Department Volunteer, you will have a front seat for behind the scenes operations of law enforcement; everything from crime scene investigation, traffic control, disaster preparedness, citizen interaction, and interaction with the citizens of our City.

Why should I volunteer?

Citizens volunteer for a wide variety of reasons. For younger adults, training and career experience is a strong motivator, while older citizens might want a new experience and increased knowledge about the law enforcement officers who serve their community. For whatever reason, the El Cerrito Police Department is looking for committed men and women who have the desire to give something back to their community.

Who should volunteer?

Anyone who is 18 years of age or older, a resident in El Cerrito, and has an interest in the City of El Cerrito and helping our community in a variety of duties.

What do police volunteers do?

Volunteers assist the El Cerrito Police Department in numerous ways. By involving volunteers at ECPD, we are able to maximize our existing resources and enhance our community relationships. The delivery of services to the community is improved with the support of volunteers. Examples of services our volunteers can offer include vacation home checks, residential security checks, greeting customers at the front desk, property and evidence storage, oral and written translation services, computer data entry, help with community outreach programs, fleet maintenance support, and involvement in the numerous City events such as the Martin Luther King parade, World One Festival/July 4th celebration, National Night Out, and help with our support for Special Olympics.

If you have some specialized skills or training not listed here, please let us know. The volunteer program can become more useful and expand with the ideas and talents of those hired in the program. Please tell us about your skills, hobbies, interests, and what you would like from the Volunteer Program when you apply.

Our volunteers are important to us and the community. When citizens are included in the prioritization, design, and delivery of police services, a closer connection is made between the Police Department and the public we serve. Volunteers in Policing are truly what community policing is all about.

What are the minimum requirements to become an El Cerrito Police Department volunteer?

• 18 years of age
• Pass a background check which includes criminal history and reference checks, both employment and social.
• No prior felony convictions
• Must be able to support and interact with the El Cerrito Police Department in a law enforcement environment which could include people related emergencies and crisis conflict management.
• Complete an El Cerrito Police Department Citizen Police Academy.
• Ability to commit 3 – 4 hours of volunteer time to an assignment and at least 8 hours of volunteer time per month.
• Availability for community events

How do I become a volunteer?

Anyone interested in the Volunteer in Policing Program is encouraged to complete the Volunteer Interest Form. The El Cerrito Police Department offers a Citizen Police Academy annually, and the academy is a prerequisite for the volunteer program and is a great way to familiarize yourself with police department operations.

The volunteer process includes completing a City of El Cerrito job application form, an interview, background check, medical waiver; a valid California Driver’s License or Identification Card, Chief of Police approval, and the Volunteer Agreement.