Contact Teams are comprised of all-female teams of volunteers who basically serve as the initial contact point between the victims needing rescue and The Defender Foundation Shield Team doing the rescuing. Contact Team members are considered to be a part of the Shield Team as a whole. They train with Shield Team members; they are skilled in hand-to-hand combat; weapons use; investigation techniques; field communications; etc. As such, women who feel called to work directly with rescued victims in this capacity need to be physically fit; calm in tense, high-pressure situations; available to respond to a rescue scenario on fairly quick notice; and willing to submit to a very thorough background check and vetting procedure. Contact Team members are a vital part of The Defender Foundation’s rescue work, both nationally and internationally. Contact Team members stay with the rescued victim from point of pick-up to “delivery” to an appropriate shelter, rehab facility, or foster care facility (depending on the victim’s age). Victims are never left alone after rescue; and they are never left in the company of male Shield Team members. Rescued victims are always in the company and under the protection of the female Contact Team members until they are released into a rescue shelter, rehab facility, or other safe housing facility.
Positions are currently available for the North Florida, Seattle, and Baltimore Shield Teams. If you are interested in applying for one of these volunteer positions, please contact The Defender Foundation national headquarters using the e-mail link in the upper right-hand corner of this page to begin the application process.
The Defender Foundation is not a fly-by-night vigilante rescue effort. We work in close cooperation with local, state, and federal law enforcement agencies. We do not break the law; we uphold the law and we work within the legal parameters afforded to us. As a Phone Team volunteer, you will also coordinate with local and federal Victim Services Coordinators which may include the FBI and DHS (ICE). All of this is covered in the Phone Volunteer training, and you will find that much of this coordination is very straight-forward; just a matter of working off of an intake sheet and checking off one coordination piece one at a time.