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Oct 11

Five Reasons to Volunteer at a Tax Prep Site in 2017

Posted on October 11, 2016 at 2:41 PM by Office of Communication & Public Affairs

Every year, the City of Dayton helps coordinate an Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) Coalition. By educating the public and coordinating free tax preparation sites around the region, we are helping our residents keep their hard-earned money every tax season. 

But we can't do this good work alone. We need YOU to join our efforts and help your neighbors and fellow community members save money in 2017. Even if you haven't volunteered for this kind of program before, it's simple and easy to get started. Here are five reasons volunteering at one of our tax sites will be simple, easy and FUN:

1. No prior experience needed. You’ll receive specialized training and can serve in a variety of roles. If you are fluent in another language, you may be able to help those who speak that language.

Greeter/Screener – You greet everyone visiting the site to create a pleasant atmosphere. You screen taxpayers to determine the type of assistance they need and confirm they have the necessary documents to complete their tax returns. Tax law certification is not required for this position.

Interpreter – You provide free language interpreter services to customers who are not fluent in English. Basic tax knowledge is helpful, but it is not required for this position. We have a site in our Hispanic Community as well as the Turkish Community.

Site Administrator/Coordinator – You have excellent organizational and leadership skills. You are the primary resource for sharing your knowledge of the program and are available to assist with any issues that may arise. You develop and maintain schedules for all volunteers to ensure adequate coverage, supplies and equipment at your site. Tax law certification is not always required for this position.

Tax Preparer – You complete and successfully certify in tax law training, including the use of electronic filing software, to provide free tax return preparation for eligible taxpayers.

Quality Reviewer – You review tax returns completed by volunteer tax preparers, ensuring that every taxpayer receives top quality service and that the tax returns are error-free. You must be tax law certified at least at the Intermediate level.

2. Free tax law training and materials. You’ll learn how to prepare basic tax returns and learn about tax deductions and credits that benefit eligible taxpayers. These include credits such as the Earned Income Tax Credit, Child Tax Credit and Credit for the Elderly.

3. Volunteer hours are flexible. Volunteers generally serve an average of three to five hours per week. The programs are usually open from mid-January through the tax filing deadline in April.

4. VITA sites are often nearby. We have 16 sites in neighborhoods throughout Montgomery, Clark, Greene and Darke counties:
  • Metro Libraries
    • Northwest Branch Library – 2410 Philadelphia Drive) (05)
    • E C Doren Branch Library – 701 Troy St. (04)
    • Belmont Branch Library – 1041 Watervliet Ave. (20)
    • Beavercreek Branch Library – 3618 Dayton Xenia Rd (32)
    • Greene County Xenia Branch Library – 76 E. Market St. (45385)
  • Wesley Community Center – 3730 Delphos Ave. (17) 
  • Dayton Christian Center – 1352 W. Riverview Ave. (02)
  • The Job Center – 1111 Edwin C. Moses Blvd. (17)
  • Community Action Partnership
    • Trotwood – 716 E. Main St. (26)
    • Dayton – 719 S. Main St. (02)
    • Darke County – 1469 Sweitzer St. – Greenville, OH 45331
  • Life Enrichment Center – 425 N. Findlay St. (04)
  • St. Mary Catholic Church – 10 Allen St. (10)
  • Fairborn Senior Center – 325 N. 3rd St. – Fairborn, OH 45324
  • Beavercreek Senior Center – 3868 Dayton Xenia Rd, - Beavercreek, OH (32)
  • Miamisburg Senior Adult Center – 305 E. Central Ave. – Miamisburg, OH 45342
5. Continuing education credits for tax pros. Enrolled Agents and non-credentialed tax return preparers can earn credits when volunteering as a VITA/TCE instructor, quality reviewer or tax return preparer. See the IRS fact sheet for more information on Continuing Education Credits.

If these reasons weren't enough, don't just take our word for it. Listen to these VITA volunteers and discover why helping your neighbors prepare their taxes is so rewarding:

Now it's your turn to help empower our community: sign up to volunteer for Tax Year 2016.