Prepare to get sweaty and dirty. And hopefully smile-y.

Volunteering with Team Rubicon is a unique experience. You’ll deploy to a community in a time of need to provide meaningful and impactful service. You’ll create strong bonds with the men and women on your left and right. You’ll finish the job tired, sore, and proud.

We understand not everyone can swing a 20 lb. sledgehammer for a week straight. And not everyone can take a week away from work and family to travel across the country. If you are passionate about serving, there is a role for you.


Step One: Recon

An operation (op) has a life cycle and its growth is determined by a number of factors. The life of an op begins at the Reconnaissance stage, where local members close to the origin of the disaster meet with local governmental agencies to determine if there is a need aligned with TR’s capabilities. Many ops never go beyond this stage, as there is no need or request for help. If there is a need or request for help, the Planning team begins building the Warning Order (WARNO).

Step Two: Warning Order

Notifications are sent after the WARNO has been approved. We often make a post on Facebook in the SitRoom or on your Region page depending on the size and scope of the Operation. The vetting process begins as soon as members begin signing up. Until an OPORD is approved, we do not dispatch any members.

Members vetted for deployment are then arranged in waves based on location and availability.

Step Three: Phasing Up

As mentioned before, an Op has to have time to grow. In addition to setting up the Rally Point, the Advon party is coordinating billeting and meals while also doing initial damage assessments. The Incident Commander (IC) lets Planning and Membership know the size of team she can support at the peak of operations, but just as importantly, the size and type of team she needs in the initial wave of responding members.

Step Four: Boots on the Ground

The IC may request members who have completed the damage assessment course or Palantir-trained Greyshirts early in the operation. By having members experienced in damage assessment in early during the Op, more work orders can be made, and the earlier the Op can support its peak number of Greyshirts. In other instances, Sawyers (TR chainsaw-trained Greyshirts) are needed to clear trees before general operations can begin and the IC will request their expertise first. In either case, the initial wave will always be smaller than what the Operation can support at its peak due to the need to create work orders for later waves to execute.

For other members that have listed their availability, we continue to roster you in waves, based on location, dates, and skills. We will also do our best to provide timely Op Mobilization Updates, updating those who have signed up with the latest ground situation.

Step Five: Demobilization

Demobilization (demob) works in two ways: demobilization for the individual volunteer and demob for the overall operation. For larger responses, volunteers are generally expected to deploy for seven days and will demob with the rest of their volunteer wave.

Upon the completion of TR’s scope of work, the entire operation – volunteers, resources, equipment – will demob and prepare for the next response.