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List of Volunteer Organizations
There are a lot of worthy organizations out there, but here are more than 60 to get you started. One day, we’ll make this a blist or wiki so you can add a worthy cause we haven’t mentioned. Meanwhile, let us know if we missed something.
Advent is a social service agency that helps abused, neglected and addicted adolescents and families through recovery services, foster homes and a counseling center. They have been in service for more than 50 years, providing critical treatment for those in need in Northern California. They provide personal care through a professional staff of counselors, social workers and a network of well-trained volunteers. Advent has numerous volunteer opportunities; you can befriend a recovering teen or be part of a group work party and help maintain or improve the homes the kids live in.
After-School All-Stars provides quality comprehensive after-school programs to young people who need a safe, supervised educational environment from 3-6 p.m. The After-School All-Stars believes that comprehensive after-school programs are the most positive investments that can help families and communities to teach kids the values and skills to become good citizens. Its programs are designed to deter children from gangs, drugs and violence with a focus on academic success, health education and creating family involvement. ASAS programs are targeted to children ages 7-17: with the middle school population representing more than 60% of total participants.
AGNEWS DEVELOPMENTAL CENTER
Agnews is a residential facility serving 300 people with developmental disabilities. Volunteers assist with direct services to clients, such as being a companion for an evening by pushing their wheelchair to a special event and helping them to enjoy the festivities. Volunteers also escort people to church, or play interactive games and crafts in our senior centers. Volunteer Groups can also help by arranging a work day to plant flowers or pull weeds. Everything they do is to enhance the lives of the individuals who live there.
AMERICAN CANCER SOCIETY
The American Cancer Society is the nationwide community-based voluntary health organization dedicated to eliminating cancer as a major health problem by preventing cancer, saving lives and diminishing suffering from cancer, through research, education, advocacy and service. Volunteer opportunities include: support to cancer patient (i.e. transportation), fundraising and awareness (i.e. Relay for Life – Event Chairperson, Team Captain, Volunteers), cancer prevention & early detection, advocacy, marketing & communication, office volunteers.
AMERICAN RED CROSS
Volunteers are the heart of the American Red Cross. It provides relief to victims of disasters. And they also help people prevent, prepare for, and respond to emergencies. On average, Red Cross volunteers constitute 97 percent of its total work force, which translates to thousands of saved dollars each year. Opportunities include:
- Disaster Services – responding to local emergencies and disasters
- Health & Safety – teaching CPR/ first aid classes and staffing first aid stations
- Community Preparedness – teaching preparedness at schools, businesses and community groups
- International Services- serving as a link to the International Red Cross Movement
- Armed Forces Emergency Services -assist with emergency communications and other services
- Blood Services – assist nurses and office administration
AMERICAN RED CROSS SANTA CLARA VALLEY
The American Red Cross is a humanitarian organization led by volunteers that provides relief to meet the emergency needs of disaster victims. Its services include local and national disaster response, community education to help people prevent, prepare for, and respond to emergencies, disaster counseling services, rent and utility assistance, youth volunteer services, in-kind donations for members of the armed services and health and safety training. It operates under the fundamental principles of impartiality, neutrality, independence, voluntary services, unity and universality.
BAY AREA WILDERNESS TRAINING
Bay Area Wilderness Training trains teachers and youth workers how to take at-risk, urban youth on backpacking and camping trips. They then lend those youth development professionals all the gear they need to take their youth on life-affirming wilderness adventures. BAWT works with a wide variety of volunteers who do everything from developing marketing plans to maintaining outdoors gear. They have active committees that do program planning, fund development and special events, marketing its courses and brand management. Committees typically meet 6-10/year. BAWT also recently opened a new office in Milpitas to serve the South San Francisco Bay Area.
BIG BROTHERS BIG SISTERS OF THE BAY AREA
The mission of Big Brothers Big Sisters of the Bay Area is to create professionally supported, one-to-one mentoring relationships between caring adults and children from diverse backgrounds and family situations. It offers two programs for volunteers to get involved. Bigs in the School Based Program meet with their Little Brothers and Little Sisters weekly, for 1 Â½ hours at a school in Campbell. Bigs in the Community Based Program take their Littles on outings on the weekends. Both programs enable volunteers and children to have fun while forming lasting relationships with tremendous impact.
BILL WILSON CENTER
Bill Wilson Center has worked to meet the needs of the community since 1973, creating 10 programs that serve youth and families. It provides professional and affordable counseling, outreach services, short term residential services to youth, prevention programs, information and referral services, and education to the community on the changing needs of youth and families. The involvement of volunteers increases the effectiveness of these programs. Available volunteer positions include working with the youth-led service and leadership program, providing support for youth in crisis over the telephone, supporting someone in grief, working with foster youth to develop independent living skills and working directly with homeless youth in the Drop-in Center.
BOYS & GIRLS CLUBS OF SILICON VALLEY
We provide after-school and summer youth development programs for youth ages 6-18. Our Vision is “to inspire and empower all young people, especially those from disadvantaged circumstances, to realize their full potential as productive, responsible and caring adults”. Our core program areas are: character & leadership; health & life skills; technology; education; sports and recreation; and art & literacy. Volunteers are needed to work one-on-one with youth in program areas and for maintenance and landscaping projects. We also have several special events each year where we need volunteers, including holiday dinners and special events. Contact Luana at (408) 957-9685 or firstname.lastname@example.org for more information. Contact Teresa Johnson at 408-957-9685 Ã—13.
BOYS & GIRLS CLUBS OF THE PENINSULA
Boys & Girls Clubs of the Peninsula is an after-school program for at risk youth. It offers programming in academics, athletics, social education, technology and visual and performing arts to more than 2,000 members each year. It relies on the help of committed volunteers to provide quality programming and services to its members. Volunteers can sign up as tutors, technology mentors, art room assistants, basketball and soccer coaches, teen mentors, chess instructors and more!
BRING ME A BOOK FOUNDATION
The Bring Me A Book Foundation is a not-for-profit organization. Its mission is to provide easy access to the best children’s books, and inspire parents to read aloud with their children for future success in school and life. They are currently seeking volunteers that are willing to volunteer assist with book covering; inserting gold seals and reading tips inside books. Training is also available for volunteers who would like to become Volunteer Foundation Trainers.
BUILD is a non-profit social venture located in East Palo Alto and Oakland. Its mission is to provide real-world entrepreneurial experience that empowers youth from under-resourced communities to excel in education, lead in their communities, and succeed professionally. BUILD is looking for volunteer mentors to guide teams of 3-5 high school students in their efforts to define a business idea and write a business plan. The year culminates in a business plan competition before a panel of judges drawn from leading Bay Area academic, business and investment communities. Mentors spend 90 minutes per week with students from November through May.
CATHOLIC CHARITIES OF SANTA CLARA COUNTY
Catholic Charities has provided services to Santa Clara County residents for 50 years. Annually, it serves 50,000 people in our community-of all backgrounds and beliefs. Currently, it provides programs that address the needs of the frail elderly and their caregivers, low-income older adults, newly arrived immigrants and refugees, high-risk youth and the working poor. Volunteer opportunities range from teaching financial literacy education classes and job training, surveying clients in our affordable housing assistance program, practicing English with a newly arrived refugee, tutoring or mentoring a child/young adult in after school literacy and recreation programs, socializing and engaging older adults with early dementia and planning seasonal activities and celebrations for different client programs.
CHILDREN’S MUSICAL THEATER
Children’s Musical Theater San Jose is dedicated to using musical theater to educate and train today’s youth to become the artists, patrons and leaders of tomorrow. Each year, CMT mounts eight productions in downtown San Jose’s 500-seat Montgomery Theater, preparing 800 young performers for roles in four Rising Stars productions (ages 6-13) and four Mainstage productions (ages 14-20). They cast every child who auditions, and offer scholarships to ensure that no child is ever turned away. They also offers a wide range of outreach and education programming. More than 350 volunteers donate 32,000 hours of time each year for every facet of productions… to construct sets, manage participants, act as stage crew, operate spotlights, sew costumes, take tickets, sell merchandise and concessions, and assist in the administrative office.
CHILD ADVOCATES OF SANTA CLARA & SAN MATEO
Child Advocates recruits volunteers to mentor and speak up for abused and neglected children in the foster care system. Advocates see their child once a week, and every six months submit a court report that includes any observations or recommendations that are in the best interests of the child. Advocates are often the only individuals who have spent a significant amount of time with the child, and can truly offer the judge better information that allows him/her to make a more informed decision as to what should happen next. They currently have 400 children on their waiting list for an Advocate. No special skills are required to volunteer-you only need to have a desire and commitment to make a lifelong
difference for an abused or neglected child.
Citizen Schools, presented by the Southwest YMCA, is an innovative after-school program that inspires and educates children while strengthening community through unique learning Apprenticeships. Citizen Schools seeks volunteers to either tutor math or teach their very own “Apprenticeships” to small groups of students at Monroe and Campbell Middle School. No teaching experience is necessary! Our talented staff is here to help. Students can design architectural models, create web pages, start businesses, perform original dances, litigate mock trials, repair and redesign computers, cook gourmet meals, publish newspapers and much, much more.
CityTeam Ministries, a non-profit organization serving the poor and homeless, provides life-saving food, shelter, clothing, recovery programs, youth outreach, camps for at-risk inner city kids, discipleship and other essential care. By partnering with CityTeam, you’re not just helping a homeless person off the street and moving them toward rehabilitation-you’re helping transform a life, heal a family, bring reconciliation and break the cycle of destructive behavior or poverty. It is about reaching out to one person at a time to help meet their immediate needs and introduce them to the hope that only God can provide.
College Track is an after-school, non-profit organization that provides the resources necessary for self-motivated, low-income, college-bound high school students to transcend socioeconomic constraints and realize their academic and personal potential. Volunteer Opportunities:
Academic Affairs Program
- Tutor or academic workshop instructor from 4-7pm on weekdays
- College advisor to guide a senior through the college application and admission process
Student Life Program
- Workshop instructor in art, music, video production
- Computer animation, or computer applications in general
- Current events “ambassador” to help keep students informed and to teach them how to do proper research
- Panelist for forums covering a large array of topics
EHC LifeBuilders was formed to provide shelter to homeless families of Santa Clara County. EHC LifeBuilders has grown over the past 20 years to provide care and support along with housing options to the thousands of single adults, families and youth in our community who find themselves on the streets or on the brink. They have 14 sites throughout Santa Clara County. Though they look for volunteers willing to make a monthly or weekly commitment, they also have many one-time volunteer opportunities, such as serving and preparing food, checking in clients, and opportunities at special events scheduled throughout the year. They are also always looking for individuals who are interested in tutoring or
providing childcare for youth, or those who are willing to teach computer or job-searching classes.
EMQ CHILDREN & FAMILY SERVICES
EMQ Children & Family Services is a Santa Clara County-based non-profit organization that helps local children struggling with emotional and behavioral problems or mental illness. Saturday help is always needed at either thrift shop, located in Los Gatos and Almaden Valley. Or volunteer with the Mentor program or VIP League and set your own hours!
THE FAMILY GIVING TREE
The Family Giving Tree’s mission is to make a difference in the lives of children and promote volunteerism in the community. This is accomplished via two major programs. The Holiday Program fulfilled the gift wishes of more than 63,000 children in 2005. This fall, the Back-to-School Drive, in partnership with RAFT, is supplying 12,000 low-income students with backpacks filled with school supplies. Its long-range goal is to see that no child goes without a Holiday gift or a backpack at school time. More than 5,000 volunteers joined in on the fun.
FRIENDS FOR YOUTH
Friends for Youth is a non-profit agency dedicated to creating quality mentoring relationships for youth who need them the most. They match at risk youth with adult volunteers for one-to-one friendships and mentoring. Friends for Youth’s mentors and mentees spend three hours a week together for one year. They hang out together, play sports, go hiking, go to movies… activities that they both enjoy, while developing a strong and lasting bond.
FRIENDS OF GUADALUPE RIVER PARK AND GARDENS
A nonprofit organization providing community leadership for the development and active use of the Guadalupe River Park & Gardens through education, advocacy and stewardship. The Friends recruit, train and support volunteers to work in many different capacities within the park and the organization. They have docents who are trained to give interpretive tours, office volunteers who help with phones and mailings education assistants, special event volunteers, and individuals who serve on the Board of Directors and various committees. Volunteers can learn new gardening techniques, develop
public speaking skills, or “connect” with young people by working with them on a community service project. Every volunteer is contributing to making the Guadalupe River Park & Gardens a special resource for our city and region.
FURRY FRIENDS PET ASSISTED THERAPY SERVICES
Its mission is to consistently facilitate delivery of the love and affection of our volunteers and their pets. They enhance the lives and reopen the closed emotional doors of people with special needs. They visit 50 sites (hospitals, schools, family centers, convalescent homes) with their pets. Volunteers and pets go through an etiquette class prior to starting visits. Most visits are once a month, for 1-2 hours. You can volunteer with your pet, or if you don’t have a pet, they need people that can help with website updates, newsletter creation, informational events, fundraising events and more. They also need someone to help take Polaroid pictures of the clients with the pets.
GIRLS FOR A CHANGE
Girls for a Change empowers young women in middle school and high school to create social change in their communities. They are looking for volunteers to guide girls through the process of identifying an issue in their community and then designing a project that creates change around that issue. They have volunteer opportunities throughout the Bay Area and are looking for powerful volunteers who believe in girls and the power they have to change the world! Its program begins in the fall and runs through June. They have opportunities working directly with girls and other opportunities with more flexible time commitments.
Hands On Bay Area makes it easy to volunteer. After a single, short orientation, volunteers will have access to more than 120 projects a month. Just choose the location, time, and day that best suits your schedule. A HOBA-trained project leader will meet you at the program you’ve selected, and ensure that your experience fun and impactful. You can sign up to work once a week, once a month, or just once! You can sign up for lots of projects, weeknights, weekdays, or weekends- from San Francisco to San Jose.
THE HEALTH TRUST
Community Partnerships brings together individuals, academic institutions, corporations, youth organizations and civic clubs to develop collaborative health solutions. Volunteers enable The Health Trust to fill gaps in service and extend successful programs to new populations. Specific assignments include facilitating health care and health screenings, hot food delivery, access to health care for uninsured children, as well as to health and medical information. Volunteers also assist in translating health care materials for non-English speaking clients, and administering surveys to better understand
the needs of the community. Volunteers support all of The Health Trust programs and initiatives. In FY 2004, 2000 volunteers contributed 25,000 hours of service.
HOPE Service’s mission is to assist people with developmental disabilities to live and participate in their communities. Providing a comprehensive array of quality services, HOPE enables infants, young people, adults and seniors to achieve their maximum potential. HOPE’s focus is on individuals with developmental disabilities such as mental retardation, cerebral palsy, epilepsy, autism and other conditions closely related to mental retardation and requiring similar programming. HOPE is dedicated to understanding the dreams of people with developmental disabilities and assist them, their families and other interested parties in creating opportunities for those dreams to come true.
Founded in 1973, InnVision is one of the area’s largest providers of direct shelter services for homeless men, women, children, veterans and the mentally ill, with programs tailored for each population. They provide services to more than 16,000 people annually. Positions are available in the fields of maintenance, computer training, computer lab monitors, landscaping, fundraising, job training, office/clerical, janitorial, teaching, childcare, clothes closet asst., delivery driver, receptionist, graphic food service, painting and data entry.
Junior Achievement places volunteer role models from the community in local classrooms to facilitate hands-on activities that introduce business and workforce readiness to kids. Junior Achievement is the largest, fastest-growing, non-profit economic education organization in the world, reaching more than 6 million K-12 students in the U.S. and 110 countries. Close to 36,000 of those kids are right here in Silicon Valley and they need your help. To get involved all you need is enthusiasm, life experience and a willingness to teach children about how you took chances and shot for the stars. Junior Achievement provides the training, curriculum and a classroom of students ready to meet you.
LARKIN STREET YOUTH SERVICES
Larkin Street Youth Services is a nationally recognized leader in providing innovative and effective programs for homeless and runaway youth in San Francisco. Its mission is “to provide a continuum of services that inspires youth to move beyond the streets.” Larkin Street averages between 30-40 dedicated volunteers each month, providing vital support to program services. Giving thousands of hours of caring services, its corps of committed volunteers enriched every program. Ongoing volunteers are requested to commit a minimum of three hours per week for at least six months.
LENDERS FOR COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT
LCD invests in people who are working to build financial, personal and shared assets in low-income communities. LCD provides financial products, services and training which its customers use to transform their own lives and to better their communities in the following ways:
- Providing affordable housing to low income communities
- Saving for higher education and retirement
- Creating wealth and jobs through entrepreneurship
- Becoming homeowners.
Volunteers can be involved in the following ways:
- Teach financial education topics to low-income people
- Assist in direct marketing, create newsletters, email campaigns and mailing
- Assist in coordinating LCD’s annual meeting
LEUKEMIA & LYMPHOMA SOCIETY
The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society’s mission is to cure leukemia, lymphoma, Hodgkin’s disease and myeloma, and to improve the quality of life of patients and their families. It has invested more than $360 million in blood cancer research and provide family support groups, financial assistance, peer mentoring, bone marrow typing, public education and government advocacy to more than 14,500 local patients. Its greatest volunteer need is the formation of a committee to help with an online auction. Other volunteer opportunities include participating in Light The Night Walks, Team In Training, office assistance, committee participation, professional resources.
LOAVES AND FISHES FAMILY KITCHEN
Loaves & Fishes is committed to providing free, nutritious meals and support services in a dignified, safe and caring environment. It provides these services to all needy individuals, with special concern for families and senior citizens. Volunteers can come as a “regular” or on a one-time basis… your time and service are invaluable to they agency. As a volunteer at Loaves & Fishes Family Kitchen, you will help to set up the dining room for dinner, prepare and serve the meal, and clean up afterward. We proudly serve our guests at two different kitchen locations in San Jose, St. Patrick Kitchen and St. Maria Goretti Kitchen.
LOMA PRIETA FIRE AND RESCUE
Most of us think the trained professionals that will come to our rescue in a fire or accident are paid full-time employees. However, volunteers comprise 74 percent of the total fire and emergency service response capability in the United States. A recent study found that it would cost American taxpayers $37.2 billion annually if we had to replace all volunteer firefighters nationwide with career staffing. Loma Prieta Volunteer Fire & Rescue started in 1962 and is one of eight volunteer companies in the Santa Cruz County Fire Department. It serves in support of the California Division of Forestry to protect the forest, farms, homes and above all the families along the Santa Cruz-Santa Clara County line in the Summit
area South of Los Gatos.
Lytton Gardens is home to a diverse population of more than 500 low-income seniors aged 64-104 who have amazing stories to share. Each year they connect hundreds of volunteers with Lytton Gardens residents to counter the isolation, loneliness and depression that can overwhelm seniors as they age. Volunteer opportunities include: teaching a senior how to access the Internet, sharing a meal or a good conversation, helping a senior run errands, tutoring English, entertaining, and hosting an activity with your friends. They can accommodate almost any volunteer schedule.
MEXICAN AMERICAN COMMUNITY SERVICES AGENCY – SAN JOSE YOUTH CENTER
Since 1964, MACSA has provided culturally appropriate, bilingual Spanish/English academic programs for underprivileged Hispanic youth (age 6-24) of the Santa Clara Valley. MACSA’s San Jose Youth Center programs and services are designed to empower and educate participants to become healthy self-sufficient positive community members. MACSA offers youth development, gang intervention, family support, employment development and training for Latino community leaders. Volunteers will be able to assist in tutoring, general office procedures, with program reports or programs through implementation of activities in either our after school programs, charter high school or sports programs.
“MentorNet, an award-winning nonprofit e-mentoring network, addresses retention and success of students in engineering, science and mathematics, particularly women. Founded in 1997, MentorNet serves highly motivated protÃ©gÃ©s from the world’s top colleges and universities. MentorNet is looking for mentors to provide information, encouragement, and support to women and other students considering careers in industry. Mentors are male or female with a degree or professional background in engineering, science, technology or mathematics. MentorNet provides training, coaching and support for mentors during the eight-month mentoring relationship. The time commitment is minimal-20 minutes a week.
MUSIC FOR MINORS
Music For Minors is a nonprofit organization founded in 1975, devoted to providing music education in elementary schools throughout San Mateo and Santa Clara counties. MFM docents (trained volunteers) provide weekly half-hour music lessons to children in kindergarten through third grade in participating schools. Its goals are to develop a musical sensitivity and literacy in children, and to enhance children’s enjoyment and appreciation of music. MFM provides a variety of experiences through hands-on participation in many facets of music: singing, listening lessons, rhythm instruments, dance and movement, theory, and musical games. This program enables many children to have their first-
and sometimes only-music education. MFM’s college-credited docent training program is offered every September. To become a docent, you must be able to sing on pitch and have some experience working with groups of children.
OASIS FOR GIRLS
Oasis For Girls located in San Francisco’s South of Market neighborhood, is a center for girls and young women ages 11-24. It aims to fulfill the lifecycle of a girl from middle school, through high school and slightly beyond-through interdisciplinary programming that builds on each step of the way through a girl’s development. It provides culturally relevant and gender-specific leadership development and life skills education programs that support the growth of low-income and immigrant girls and young women of color in urban communities. Through these programs, participants have access to a community of adults who support them in creating change and integrating their skills to address issues they face in their lives and in their communities.
PENINSULA HABITAT FOR HUMANITY
Peninsula Habitat for Humanity builds communities. They construct decent, affordable, ownership housing throughout San Mateo County in partnership with low-income families and the community. Its success in making homeownership a reality in one of the nation’s most expensive real estate markets is due to the overwhelming support they receive from corporations, businesses, foundations, faith communities, civic groups, individuals and the community at large. They welcome everyone who wants to join, regardless of the amount of time they have to give. There is a wide selection of tasks and projects available, in an effort to meet different schedules and to ensure that volunteers have a rewarding experience.
REBUILDING TOGETHER SILICON VALLEY
Rehabilitates the homes of low-income homeowners so that they may live in warmth, safety and independence, and repair non-profit facilities so they are better able to serve our community. Each April, they gather donated materials and hundreds of volunteers to help build a better community for our low-income, elderly and disabled homeowners that cannot maintain their homes. Rebuilding Together seeks volunteers with many talents and abilities-from people who can help scrape paint to skilled trades people. Anyone aged 14 or older can be a volunteer.
RESOURCE AREA FOR TEACHERS
Resource Area For Teachers provides materials and training in hands-on teaching techniques to more than 5,000 teachers throughout the Bay Area. RAFT creates a vital connection between the business community and the educational community, funneling reusable business surplus items into classrooms for the enhancement of math, science and art educational programs. RAFT uses volunteers to sort, package and prepare a variety of donated materials for teachers. Corporate groups often use the opportunity as a team building exercise. Projects can be scheduled weekdays from 9:30a.m. – 12 p.m. or 1:30 – 4 p.m. Saturday hours are 9 a.m. – 1 p.m. The tasks vary, so there will always be an interesting
project available for you or your group.
THE ROLE MODEL PROGRAM
The Role Model Program provides positive adults the opportunity to inspire a classroom of underserved elementary or middle school students to make positive life choices and see education as a source of freedom and power. Role Mode volunteers spend 6-8 one-hour sessions in a classroom presenting an interactive curriculum entitled, “Dare to Dream.” During their visits, Role Model volunteers share personal and professional experiences that motivate students to seek out positive adult role models, value their uniqueness, make good choices and explore careers opportunities and higher
SACRED HEART COMMUNITY SERVICES
Sacred Heart Community Service is a non-denominational, not-for-profit organization in San Jose that offers a helping hand to families in need. Since its founder Louise Benson began giving food baskets in 1964 from her home, SHCS has grown to provide a comprehensive range of free services to nearly 2,000 individuals each day, making a real difference in their ability to provide for themselves and their families. Sacred Heart Community Service welcomes adult, youth and group volunteers. They are in need of 100+ volunteers to work with its children at an Academic Summer Day Camp.
THE SALVATION ARMY
The Salvation Army began its work in the Bay Area more than 120 years ago. Its mission as a church and social service agency is to serve people in need without discrimination. They have a variety of one-time, on-going, individual, group and family-friendly volunteer opportunities throughout the Peninsula, the South Bay, the East Bay and San Francisco. Services include after-school and day camp programs for low-income youth; activities, meals, and low-cost housing for seniors; drug and alcohol recovery programs for adults; disaster services; and social services for all persons in need.
SAN JOSE MUSEUM OF ART
SJMA is one of California’s leading institutions dedicated to visual culture. It serves as a showcase for contemporary art with an emphasis on the West Coast, Mexico and the Pacific Rim. SJMA is respected for its exhibitions, wide-ranging education programs, a significant permanent collection, scholarly publications and the welcoming atmosphere created by the Visitor Experience Program. In June 2001, the SJMA Board of Trustees took a bold step by instituting free admission for all visitors every day. Annual attendance has increased over 113% to nearly 200,000 visitors annually.
SANTA CLARA COUNTY PARKS
Join the “Outdoor Help Corp!” Since 1924, when Stevens Creek County Park was established, people have given their time and talents to help make Santa Clara County Parks special places to visit. In 2004, nearly 2000 volunteers donated over 30,000 hours of service to a variety of projects and programs. Become a County Parks Volunteer and see how you can play an important role in providing visitor services, and in protecting and enhancing parklands.
SAVE THE BAY
Save The Bay is the Bay Area’s oldest and largest membership organization working exclusively to celebrate, protect and restore San Francisco Bay. Volunteers are needed to help with ongoing Community-based Restoration projects, happening at six sites. Save The Bay also offers fun and educational Discover The Bay canoe, kayak and walking outings through out the Bay.
SECOND HARVEST FOOD BANK
Second Harvest Food Bank of Santa Clara and San Mateo Counties is a private non-profit organization that collects and distributes more than 27 million pounds of food each year. They currently serve an average of 163,500 individuals each month; 60% are low-income families, 37% are children and 20% are seniors. By building collaborative networks, they efficiently distribute food by leveraging donations of money, food and human resources. They rely upon the energy and commitment of the local community to fight hunger. Annually, more than 3,250 volunteers deliver the full-time equivalent of 84 employees.
SAN FRANCISCO SPCA
Founded in 1868, The SF/SPCA is a national leader in saving lives and raising the status of companion animals. Its innovative programs and services include: Maddie’s Pet Adoption Center; Community Veterinary Services, including the SF/SPCA Animal Hospital and Spay/Neuter Clinic; Hearing Dog Program; Humane Education; public Dog Training classes; Feral Cat Assistance Program; and Animal Assisted Therapy.
SILICON VALLEY HABITAT FOR HUMANITY
Silicon Valley Habitat for Humanity helps low-income families build and own their own homes. They emphasize self-sufficiency and self-reliance, as each family must provide 500 hours of “sweat equity” in lieu of a down payment. Various social organizations and local businesses provide volunteers, contributions and construction materials to build these homes. They currently have a base of 100 “regular” volunteers and facilitate an additional 1,500-2000 community volunteers representing business, faith and service organizations. Once the home is complete, HfH sells it at no-profit and provides a 30-year, no-interest loan to the homeowner.
Special Olympics provides FREE year-round sports training and athletic competition in Olympic-type sports for persons 8 years of age and older with mental and physical disabilities, giving them continuing opportunities to develop physical fitness and demonstrate courage.
The Taproot Foundation is a nonprofit organization that engages teams of marketing/creative services, HR and IT professionals on pro bono projects for local nonprofits. Taproot Foundation lets you “give what you know” by volunteering your skills so that you can make the strongest impact on your community while networking and growing professionally. Taproot Foundation screens the nonprofits, recruits top professionals to get involved, and provides project management so the time you give is used effectively. Volunteers dedicate ~100 hours over a 5 month project, delivering marketing communications materials, IT projects and HR programs to local nonprofits.
THE TECH MUSEUM OF INNOVATION
The Tech Museum of Innovation is a non-profit educational institution that engages people of all ages and backgrounds in exploring and experiencing the technologies affecting their lives and aims to inspire the innovator in everyone. The Tech has openings for Exhibit Explainers who volunteer on the Gallery Floor. Exhibit Explainers interact with museum guests of all ages by assisting guests to explore exhibits and sharing their knowledge of the science/technology behind the exhibits. They may also perform interactive science and technology demonstrations. Full training is provided.
TOYS FOR TOTS
The U.S. Marine Corps Reserve collects new, unwrapped toys during October, November and December each year and distributes those toys as Christmas gifts to needy children in the community in which the campaign is conducted. Activities which take place each year are the collection and distribution of toys in the communities where a Marine Corps Reserve Unit is located. Campaign Coordinators conduct an array of activities throughout the year, which include golf tournaments, foot races, bicycle races and other purely voluntary events designed to increase interest in Toys for Tots, and generate toy and monetary donations.
THE TRAIL CENTER
The Trail Center is a non-profit, all-volunteer organization formed in 1983 to promote, develop, and maintain quality, non-motorized trails for all people in San Mateo, Santa Clara, Santa Cruz and San Francisco counties. The principal volunteer opportunities at the Trail Center include (no experience is necessary, we provide all tools and training):
- Trail building, maintenance and repair-Trail work is the perfect blend of community service, outdoor awareness, conservation, physical exercise and camaraderie set in places of extraordinary natural beauty. Workdays are scheduled one Saturday per month at various locations.
- Trail mapping-The Trail Center has produced and updates on a continuous basis three popular maps of Peninsula area parks and trails, the Peninsula Parklands Map, the Central Peninsula Trail Map, and the Southern Peninsula Trail Map.
VARIETY CHILDREN’S CHARITY
Variety Children’s Charity provides life-saving and life-enriching assistance to children challenged by physical and mental disabilities, poverty, abuse and neglect. Variety of Northern California takes pains to reach out to organizations that provide crucial services to children and families in dire need of relief. Through grants, scholarships, cultural enrichment programs, outreach activities, and other donations, Variety Children’s Charity is able to support programs that will mean a difference between a life worth living and too often, no life at all. Volunteer opportunities include:
- Chaperoning children to the movies, amusement parks, zoos, museums and other life-enrichment activities
- Assisting with special events to help raise awareness and money; volunteering for pledge drives, outreach at local shops and businesses, lending a hand at special events
VISTA CENTER FOR THE BLIND AND VISUALLY IMPAIRED
Vista enables clients to achieve their highest potential through programs that promote independence and improve quality of life. Volunteers work directly with our clients providing a variety of needs such as reading mail and other material, provide document and organizational support, helping with shopping and other errands, lending exercise and friendly support. Other volunteers do clerical work at the home office and retail work in the store. A large group of volunteers also make our fundraising events possible throughout the year.
VOLUNTEER CENTER OF SILICON VALLEY
As a catalyst for inter-organizational collaboration, VCSV mobilizes and links the talents and time of diverse volunteers to help meet critical needs in the community. It maintains essential and interrelated services and programs that provide a broad and dynamic array of committed community volunteers. Its core services include Referral Services, Emergency Preparedness Services, Youth Services, Senior Services and Corporate Services. Alongside its ongoing Volunteer Training and Awareness program, the Volunteer Center facilitates two annual community volunteer promotion programs: the Human Race and the Corporate Volunteer Commitment. In collaboration with hundreds of other non-profit organizations, public agencies, corporations and community activities, the Volunteer Center is uniquely positioned to
make effective use of a community volunteer pool that includes people of all ages, ethnicities and nationalities. We work with these groups to improve our community while continually recognizing those outstanding individual and groups who freely give of their time and talents.
YES Reading is dedicated to empowering children through literacy. YES Reading recruits and trains community volunteers to provide one-on-one tutoring for elementary and middle school students reading below grade level. They partner directly with high-need public schools and provide a results-oriented intervention for low-performing readers. Lesson plans and curriculum are structured and easy for tutors to follow; no prior teaching or tutoring experience is required. Currently, YES Reading operates four reading centers in San Mateo and Santa Clara counties and offers tutoring both during and after the school day.
Its mission is to empower women, children and their families, and to eliminate racism, hatred and prejudice. They have continued to provide a broad range of services that transform the lives of a diverse community. Its strength lies with the many staff, volunteers, donors, community members and business leaders who share that vision and passion. Volunteers are always needed for event committees, parent education facilitators, class instructors, rape crisis hotline, at childcare sites to read to kids, rock the babies, etc.