Bay Area Chaplains has one of the most active chaplain programs in the state of California. More than 150 volunteers that minister alongside the staff chaplains make it possible. Some of these volunteers have many years of experience working with incarcerated individuals. However, all of them must undergo a refresher training course every year.
In order to become a volunteer both a BAC application and a sheriff department application must be completed. There is a background check, and an orientation training conducted by the sheriff department. The entire process takes two months or more.
The volunteer training is conducted twice every year. Each volunteer is required to attend once per year. New volunteers meet separately with one of the staff chaplains to review the training manual. The program for the experienced volunteers is new each year. There may be a guest speaker, a panel of experts, or one of the chaplains teaching the group.