Volunteers In Police Services (VIPS)

History of the Program

The Santa Rosa Police Department started a Volunteers in Police Services (VIPS) program in 1997. Today over 50 VIPS assist the Police Department performing a wide range of duties. In 2011, VIPS exceeded 5,000 hours of service.

Duties & Responsibilities

VIPS hold neighborhood watch meetings, patrol City streets, use radar to monitor speeders in neighborhoods, mark and tow abandoned autos, administer the Police Department Ride-Along Program, present school safety programs, provide additional staffing at special events, and perform administrative duties throughout the department. They also may participate in the Downtown Ambassador Program. The VIPS walk the downtown area and provide information and assistance to people using the downtown business district. In addition, they are an extra set of eyes and ears to report safety issues.

Citizen Police Academy

Applicants who wish to become volunteers must attend the Santa Rosa Police Department Citizen Police Academy. The Citizen Police Academy is a three hour, once a week course which covers an eight week period. The Academy is taught by officers and staff of the Santa Rosa Police Department. The topics covered include the history of law enforcement and a curriculum centered on the different divisions of the department.


Individuals wishing to volunteer must submit an application (PDF), complete the Citizen Police Academy, pass a background investigation, and go through an interview process prior to entry into the Volunteer Program.

Areas of Opportunity

The areas of opportunity under the Volunteers in Police Services Program are expanding as we constantly strive to offer more services to the citizens of Santa Rosa. If you live in Sonoma County and are at least 18 years old, you could be a part of this expanding Volunteer team.

Contact Us

For more information contact our Community Outreach Team at 707-543-3550.
Volunteers standing with police officers