Volunteer Guardian Program


VGP is a partnership between:

  • Via Health, Fitness & Enrichment Center
  • Mobile County Probate Court
  • Mobile County Commission
  • The City of Mobile
  • South Alabama Regional Planning Commission/Area Agency on Aging
  • Community Partners who assist with referrals and support services
Volunteer fuardian program partners

*** Community Lunch & Learn ***

August 24th

11:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m. at the Via Center

Lunch provided by the Dauphin Street Cafe'.  Space limited and RSVP required.

Call: 251.478.3311 or Click Inquiry Button below

Much-appreciated support is provided by the Mobile Bar Foundation, an organization committed to improving the legal system and the administration of justice.

Volunteer Guardians are appointed by the Probate Court to make decisions for the incapacitated to protect their health and safety. VGP remains the only program of its kind in our state and is the last line of defense for vulnerable citizens - with no appropriate family or friends - against homelessness and worsening quality of life.

YOU can be a Volunteer Guardian.  We are looking for volunteers who are compassionate, caring and committed, 21 and older, have computer access, transportation, and the ability to learn basic legal and medical information, complete a background check, and can spare at least 4-6 hours per month to make a vulnerable citizen's life better.


Volunteer Guardian Training Resources

The Via Center is committed to providing support for our Volunteer Guardians.  As we continue to adhere to Covid safety and health guidance, we will post training videos and resources for you to access.  Thank you for your service!

Additional Help: Contact Us

Guardian Testimonials

Denise S. Boyd140514

Denise S. Boyd

“ I am Denise S. Boyd, married to Robert Boyd with one child, Carl Jackson, and 1 granddaughter Fringella Jackson. I am a member of El Bethel Primitive Baptist Church where I serve as videographer and on the Pastor’s Aide Board. I am a full-time insurance sales agent with AFLAC for the past 20 years. I am a member of the National Association of Colored Women’s Clubs which was organized in 1896, the club organizer of the Alabama Association of Women’s Clubs organized in 1899. I also serve as President of the Mobile City Federation of Women’s Clubs & Youth Affiliates organized in 1948 and a member of the Maggie B. Yates Women’s Federated Club. I became a Volunteer Guardian because every person deserves to maintain their dignity. I want to serve others by making sure they are treated as if they are a member of my family. We do not know how we will end up. I believe that you reap what you sow; I want to make sure that I have sowed some good seeds so I can reap a good harvest. ”

Douglas L. July, Sr Screenshot 2022-02-21 141942

Douglas L. July, Sr.

“ I am Douglas L. July, Sr., born, one of ten children, to the late Alfred and Bertha July in the Plateau (Africa-Town) community. I was educated in the Mobile County Public School System, graduating from C. F. Vigor High School in 1973. Then matriculated at the Alabama State University in Montgomery, AL. There, I was a member of the Mighty Marching Hornets Band and pledged Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Inc., and Phi Mu Alpha Sinfonia Music Fraternity. I am a retired educator with 39 years of experience in the state of Alabama; 12 years in Russell County, 5 years in Washington County, and 22 years in Mobile County. I am a member of the Yorktown Missionary Baptist Church in Plateau, where Minister Christopher L. Williams., Sr., is the pastor and one of the musicians for the Greater Nazaree Missionary Baptist Church, Minister James A. Parrish, Jr., pastor. I also serve as the church music education administrator for the music auxiliary of the Mobile Baptist Sunlight District Association. For 41 years, I was married to my childhood sweetheart, the late Gwendolyn Coleman July. This union was blessed with three children: Douglas Jr., (Kristi), Kenisha (Bryan) Washington, and Chiante (Muskingum) Barnes, and four grandchildren; Kamryn, Vaughn, Douglas III, and Mason.”

Training Materials and Videos

Famous People and Volunteer Work

Anne Frank…Winston Churchill…Martin Luther King, Jr…..Famous authors, advocates, political leaders, and more share their thoughts on volunteer work and the amazing people that give of themselves to help others.

End of Life Care

Addresses end-of-life decision-making by guardians of older adults. Presents current definitions of hospice and palliative care and describes several common end-of-life disease trajectories. Details the diverse contexts in which guardians may find themselves when making end-of-life care decisions. 

Communicating With People With Disabilities

Techniques for communicating with people who are: blind/visually impaired; deaf/hard of hearing; have speech impairments, mobility issues, and cognitive disabilities; and those from other cultures

Decision Making for Adults With Intellectual Disabilities

Decision Making for Adults With Intellectual Disabilities/5:31  Legal definition for incapacitation requiring guardianship, abilities/areas of needed assistance, other alternatives.

Modifying or Concluding a Conservator or Guardianship

Modifying or Concluding a Conservator or Guardianship/4:13 Scenarios when a conservator or guardianship may come to an end, including something happening to a Guardian, your ward regaining capacity, or the death of your ward. Explanation of Restoration of Rights proceedings.

Capacity to Make Decisions

Capacity to Make Decisions/4:57 How do you determine if someone is “legally incapacitated?”  Assess capacity, determine capacity, and understand that determining capacity is not a one-size-fits-all approach.

Abuse, Neglect and Financial Exploitation

Abuse, Neglect and Financial Exploitation/5:40 Overview of adult abuse, neglect, and financial exploitation and ways to seek protection for a vulnerable adult. Common signs. Five protective measures.

Guardianship/Conservatorship Basics

Guardianship/Conservatorship Basics/5:59 Fundamental concepts of guardianship and conservatorship. Guardianship/conservatorship as a court intervention, protective proceeding, and oversight of an incapacitated person’s affairs. Responsibilities guardians and conservators have to the court, and to the incapacitated person.

Responsibilities of a Volunteer Guardian

Responsibilities of a Volunteer Guardian/5:06 Roles and duties of a guardian.  Guardian’s general authority under Alabama law.  Role in monitoring and promoting the person’s well-being, protecting the person from harm, and utilizing least-restrictive alternatives.  “Substituted judgment” and “best interest” standards for making decisions.

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