Bus Buddy

Name of agency and statement of purpose:  The Karen Organization of Minnesota’s (KOM) mission is to enhance the quality of life for Karen and other refugees from Burma in Minnesota by assisting refugees to settle, integrate and become increasingly self-sufficient while fostering cultural knowledge and understanding.

Title: Bus Buddy

Purpose/objective: When refugees from Burma arrive in the Twin Cities for the first time, they may not have a car or be knowledgeable of the public transit system. The goal of the bus buddy is to help clients learn the public transit system so they can travel around the Twin Cities with ease.

Key Responsibilities:

  • Take clients on the bus or light rail to the trip they have planned (KOM office, Ramsey County office, etc.)
  • Help clients learn how to plan trips to the places they go regularly using maps and schedules

Time commitment: Available at least 1 day per week for 2-4 hours on an on-call basis, primarily evenings and Saturdays

Location: Various locations, primarily in the East St. Paul area

Qualifications: College students or adults who are knowledgeable of the Twin Cities public transit system

Benefits: As you teach clients how to use the bus, you will have the opportunity to build friendships with refugees from Burma and enhance your cross-cultural communication skills.

How to apply/contact: Please complete KOM’s Volunteer Application online or contact Suzanne Olive to receive a paper application.  Volunteers will attend an orientation session and be subject to a background check.


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