It takes 30 minutes to complete a tax return and change a life. Join CEP and make a difference in your community.

Positions

CEP volunteers make a difference by helping Illinois families move toward financial stability. Whether you want to work directly with clients or behind the scenes, there is a place for you!  

Registration for Tax Preparers, Tax Site Assistants and Savings Campaign Champions is now open. We also are currently accepting applications for Tax Representatives and Office Volunteers. 

Tax Preparer

Work one-on-one with tax site clients, preparing federal and state income tax returns and providing basic counseling on tax law and credits. 

Time Commitment 
Volunteers are asked to volunteer a total of 30 hours or more from January to April after completing training. Scheduling is flexible; sites generally operate on weekday evenings and Saturdays.

Training 
Training is mix of online and classroom learning.  Online training is available in November, and classroom training takes place in January.

Required Skills 
No tax experience is necessary. Basic computer proficiency is helpful. 

Next Steps 
Registration for the 2015 tax season is now open. Register today to "Take Action. Make Opportunity." Contact volunteer@economicprogress.org if you have any questions.

Tax Site Assistant

Aid in the overall flow of tax sites by helping with administrative activities, including client intake and outtake, copying and filing documents and child care. Site managers determine volunteer roles depending on the needs at each site.

Time Commitment 
Volunteers are asked to volunteer a total of 30 hours or more from January to April after completing training. Scheduling is flexible; sites generally operate on weekday evenings and Saturdays.

Training 
Training is a mix of online and classroom learning.  Online training is available in November, and the classroom training is available in January.  View available training and sign up by registering to volunteer.

Required Skills 
No prior experience is necessary.

Next Steps 
Registration for the 2015 tax season is now open. Register today to "Take Action. Make Opportunity."

Contact volunteer@economicprogress.org if you have any questions.

Volunteer Financial Coach 

Become a Financial Coach.

What is the Progress Program?

The Progress Program is a high-impact, evidence-based eleven-week financial development course that combines financial education, financial coaching, financial behavior modification, and peer learning to empower participants to accomplish specific financial goals meant to help them move from financial uncertainty to financial security. Participants are people living within the metropolitan Chicago area, between the ages of 21 and 65, employed in at least a part-time job, and having an income below $27,500 for individuals and $55,000 for families.

As a Financial Coach, you will help a participant identify their short and long term financial goals, identify obstacles to financial goals and strategies to remove them, provide tools and resources to help them achieve their goals efficiently and effectively.

What skills do I need?

We are looking for volunteers who demonstrate empathy, an understanding of the financial challenges facing low-income adults, and a willingness to learn how to coach people on goals relate to savings, earnings and budgeting.

Do volunteers receive training?

Volunteer coaches are trained in both personal finance and coaching based on motivational interviewing, and work with a participant for eleven weeks. Training and volunteering will take place at CEP Headquarters, 567 W Lake St, Chicago. Each training session is 5 hours with lunch provided.

› Saturday, May 16th, 2015

› Saturday, May 23rd, 2015

After I complete training, what is the volunteer time commitment?

We ask our Financial Coaches to make a commitment of two consecutive cycles – for a total of 7 months. Coaches will volunteer a total of 21 hours per cycle ,including training, for a total of 42 hours. Coaches are encouraged to continue their participation in future cycles. Coaches must be available for the following dates.

› Participant & Coach Joint Kick-Off Session – 2.5 hours

 Cycle 1: Tuesday, May 26th Cycle 2: Tuesday, September 1st

2.5 hours each with dinner included each session

 › Coaching Sessions and Peer Learning Groups – 1.5 hours per session

Six week-day evening coaching sessions and peer learning groups – Either every other Tuesday or Thursday after the Kick-Off session for 6 sessions

› Completion Party – 1 hour

Cycle 1: Tuesday, August 11th  Cycle 2: Tuesday, November 17th

How do I apply?

Fill out the brief application here. Once you have completed an application, Volunteer Engagement staff will contact you within 3 business days to set up a group interview with CEP Staff.

Questions?

Contact Volunteer Engagement at volunteer@economicprogress.org or 312-630-0288. 

 

Office Volunteer

Support CEP’s mission behind the scenes. Projects are available on an as-needed basis and may include data entry, mailings, research and more.

Time Commitment 
Time commitment is flexible and may be as little as 2-3 hours one time; we ask that volunteers complete projects to which they have committed. Telecommuting may be available for volunteers outside the Chicagoland area for certain projects.

Training 
On-the-job training and special sessions are provided as needed.

Required Skills 
No prior experience is necessary.

Next Steps 
Please note that office volunteers must register with an email address to receive any communications from CEP. Sign up as an office volunteer using our online registration system; you will receive our monthly email newsletter, where we share current opportunities. 

Tax Representative

Represent low-income clients on federal and state income tax issues.

Time Commitment 
Time commitment is flexible, and telecommuting is available. Volunteers may complete cases from their home or office and can take on cases according to their availability.

Training 
On-the-job training and special sessions are provided as needed.

Required Skills 
CPAs, attorneys and Enrolled Agents are eligible to take cases.  At most times, experience with tax representation is a requirement.  We are able to provide training and select times of the year.

Next Steps 
Tax Representatives can submit this form to esternberg@economicprogress.org at any time.  If approved, we will keep you on our contact list to receive cases.  When we have an eligible case, we will offer it to volunteers with a matching skill set.


Questions? Contact the Volunteer Engagement department via email or at (312) 630-0288.