You can never do enough for your community, and here in Brooklyn, we’re lucky that there are many ways to give back. Whether you want to work with kids, donate your time to an arts organization, or spend time teaching financial literacy, there are places in your backyard that need your help.

We have refreshed our list of organizations where you can volunteer; all the places on this list are either based in Brooklyn or offer services in our borough. There are opportunities for adults, teens, and families.

If you know of other organizations that would benefit from a listing here, please feel free to let us know at editor@bklyner.com.

AHRC

83 Maiden Lane, New York, NY 10038

Contact: Karen Zuckerman, Director of Volunteering and Corporate Engagement, 212-895-3393, karen.zuckerman@ahrcnyc.org

Mission: Dedicated to enhancing the lives of individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities and their families. To serve students with disabilities (and their families). We are a full continuum provider, serving from birth on.

Volunteer opportunity: Employment mentoring, interview prep, teaching financial literacy, arts-related workshops, gardening, and more

Minimum age: 21

Time commitment: Three hours per week for six months

Family volunteer opportunities: No

High school community service: No

The Arab-American Family Support Center

150 Court Street, 3rd Floor, Brooklyn, NY 11201

Contact: Nidal Alloubne

718-643-8000, info@aafscny.org

Mission: To provide comprehensive social services to Arab-American immigrant families. To strengthen families, foster healthy development of youth, encourage civic participation, and ensure their well-being as they adapt to life in the U.S.

Volunteer needs and skills: Adult Education Program: Volunteers can choose to tutor, teach, assist with curriculum development, act as a classroom assistant, or a case manager. Arabic language skills necessary for case management only. Youth Program: Provide Arab-American immigrant youth with one-on-one homework help and engage youth in social and cultural enrichment activities. Tutors must have basic reading, writing, and math skills.

Minimum age: 18 (Adult Education Program), 16 (Youth Program)

Time commitment: 2 hours per week for a minimum of 4 months

Family volunteer opportunities: Yes

High school community service: Yes

Artichoke Dance Company

121 Sterling Place, #2B, Brooklyn, NY 11217

Contact: Lynn Neuman

917-627-8770, info@artichokedance.org

Mission: Artichoke Dance Company’s tri-pillar platform – Entertain, Engage, Empower – makes movements happen! As a national leader in eco-arts productions, Artichoke merges performance innovation, environmental activism, community engagement, and civic action, specializing in performances for public spaces and building cross-disciplinary programs that engage people in places and change-making.

Volunteer needs and skills: Administrative assistance, accounting, research, marketing, community performers, fundraising.

Minimum age: 16

Time commitment: Varies with position

Family volunteer opportunities: Yes

High school community service: Yes, for students with performing arts experience

Big Brothers Big Sisters of Brooklyn & Queens

40 Rector Street, 11th Floor, New York, NY 11216

Contact: Alex Lorditch, Volunteer Experience Manager, 212-686-2042, ext. 126 | alorditch@bigsnyc.org | For more information and online application visit bigsnyc.org

Mission: To build and support mentoring relationships to ignite the biggest possible futures for youth.

Volunteer opportunities: Volunteer mentors (“Bigs”) are individuals 21 years of age and older who are matched in a 1-to-1 mentoring relationship with an NYC youth (“Littles”) who lives in one of the five boroughs. Volunteers are required to commit to at least one year of service, and volunteers meet with their Littles twice a month on a Saturday or Sunday for a total of eight hours a month.

Minimum age: 21

Time commitment: 2X per month for at least 8 hrs/total, for one year

Family volunteer opportunities: No

High school community service: No

Brooklyn Animal Action

info@brooklynanimalaction.org, 877-415-4889

Mission: Brooklyn Animal Action is an all-volunteer non-profit that rescues and rehomes cats in Brooklyn. They provide support services to wouldbe rescuers and are involved in trap-neuter-release programs.

Volunteer opportunities: Including but not limited to fundraising, promoting adoption, fostering animals in your home, transporting animals between shelters and foster homes, photographing adoptable animals, web design and social media skills, posting fliers and more.

Minimum age: 21+ preferred, great opportunity for seniors!

Time commitment: A few hours per week

Family volunteer opportunities: Yes

High school community service: No

BRIC Arts | Media | Bklyn

647 Fulton Street, Brooklyn, NY 11217

Contact: Vanessa Fernandez

718-683-5600

Mission: BRIC Arts | Media | Bklyn presents quality contemporary art, performing art and community media programs that reflect Brooklyn’s diverse communities, and provides resources and platforms to support the creative process. All of their offerings are free, or low cost, to enhance the public’s access to and understanding of arts and media.

Volunteer needs and skills: Enjoy being outdoors rain or shine that enjoy working with people. Volunteers can expect to provide information, conduct surveys and greet festival attendees among other activities. Interns can work at the gallery in late May-early June and should have a professional attitude, great attention to detail, and strong organizational skills to go along with an interest in contemporary art.

Minimum age: 18

Time commitment: Schedule to be determined, flexible.

Family volunteer opportunities: No

High school community service: No

Brooklyn Botanic Garden

1000 Washington Avenue, Brooklyn, NY 11225

Contact: Jeanine Poggioli

718-623-7260 or volunteer@bbg.org

Mission: The mission of the Brooklyn Botanic Garden is to serve all the people in its community and throughout the world by displaying plants, engaging in research, education and reaching out to urban neighborhoods to enhance the quality of their surroundings through the cultivation and enjoyment of plants.

Volunteer needs and skills: Volunteers work in most departments, including horticulture, education, science, membership, and the library. They also help as Garden Guides, with plant sales and special events in our visitor center.

Minimum age: 16

Time commitment: Very flexible, from weekly to monthly commitments.

Family volunteer opportunities: No

High school community service: No

Brooklyn Bridge Park Conservancy

334 Furman Street, Brooklyn, NY 11201

Contact: Sarah Ward, sward@bbpc.net

718-802-0603, info@bbpc.net

Mission: To ensure the creation, adequate funding, proper maintenance, public support and citizen enjoyment of Brooklyn Bridge Park through partnerships with the public sector, development of programming and active promotion of the needs of the park and its constituency.

Volunteer needs and skills: Gardening, assisting with movie series

Minimum age: All ages, children must be accompanied by an adult.

Time commitment: As available

Family volunteer opportunities: Yes

High school community service: Yes

Brooklyn Community Services

285 Schermerhorn Street, Brooklyn, NY 11217

Contact: Kristina Reitamm, outreach and engagement manager

718-310-5614, kreitamm@wearebcs.org

Mission: The Brooklyn Bureau of Community Service strives to empower its clients to achieve greater economic self-sufficiency and more rewarding participation in the community through programs that nurture and strengthen families, protect children, and enable individuals with disabilities to achieve their full potential.

Volunteer needs and skills: Tutoring children in an after school setting, assisting at a child care center, adult literacy tutoring, adult computer tutoring, engaging children at a family center, helping in a recreation program for developmentally disabled adults, urban gardening, clerical, data entry, marketing research, fundraising, junior board, board level subcommittees on programming, volunteerism, marketing, fundraising, and board positions.

Minimum age: Varies

Time commitment: Varies from a single day to 3 months

Family volunteer opportunities: Depends upon age of children

High school community service: Yes

Brooklyn Children’s Museum

145 Brooklyn Avenue, Brooklyn, NY 11213

Contact: Alex Domeck

718-735-4400, X104, adomeck@brooklynkids.org

Mission: To actively engage children in educational and entertaining experiences through innovation and excellence in exhibitions, programs and use of its collections. We encourage children to develop an understanding of and respect for themselves, others and the world around them through exploration of culture, arts, science, and the environment.

Volunteer needs and skills: Visitor services, birthday parties, education.

Minimum age: 18

Time commitment: 8 hours a week minimum

Family volunteer opportunities: Yes

High school community service: Yes

Brooklyn Community Pride Center

1360 Fulton Street, Ground Floor Brooklyn, NY 11216

Contact: Mona Lewis, program director, mlewis@lgbtbrooklyn.org

347-889-7719, info@lgbtbrooklyn.org

Mission: To provide a safe, common space offering physical and mental health services, social support, recreational and cultural programming, as well as being a hub of information for lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender individuals and families in Brooklyn.

Volunteer needs and skills: Reception, program facilitators, operating and event support

Minimum age: 18

Time commitment: Negotiable

Family volunteer opportunities: Yes

High school community service: Yes

Brooklyn Conservancy of Music

58 7th Avenue, Brooklyn, NY 11217

Contact: Pete Robbins

718-622-3300, probbins@bqem.org

Mission: The Conservatory’s mission is to promote individual and community growth through music.

Volunteer needs and skills: We have periodic needs for administrative task work, support at special events, staffing for concerts, and some specialized needs including sound engineering, video and audio recording, and transportation of equipment to outside venues for concerts.

Minimum age: 15

Time commitment: Varies/flexible: most opportunities are two to three hours in length (for concerts), on an as-needed basis.

Family volunteer opportunities: No

High school community service: No

Brooklyn Economic Development Corporation

Kingsborough Community College, 2001 Oriental Blvd, Rm T-4162, Brooklyn, NY 11235

Contact: Joan Bartolomeo

718-368-6790, jgb@bedc.org

Mission: BEDC seeks to create and expand economic opportunities throughout Brooklyn by implementing business and neighborhood development and planning activities to support and create sustainable jobs, industries, and communities.

Volunteer needs and skills: Helping to conduct surveys, providing pro bono expertise, assisting with/at fundraising events

Minimum age: 18

Time commitment: 1 to 3 hours/week

Family volunteer opportunities: No

High school community service: No

Brooklyn for Peace

388 Atlantic Avenue, Second Floor, Brooklyn, NY 11217

Contact Melissa Corbette

718-624-5921, bfp@brooklynpeace.org

Mission: We seek to inform ourselves and our community about issues of war and peace and to enable ourselves to respond effectively.

Volunteer needs and skills: Posting flyers in neighborhoods announcing events, distributing flyers at subway stops, staff tables on weekends (especially at festivals); phone calls. For office volunteer, computer skills, etc.

Minimum age: 14; in office must be at least a HS junior

Time commitment: In office, 4-8 hours/week

Family volunteer opportunities: Yes

High school community service: Yes

Brooklyn Pride

P.O. Box 150508, Brooklyn, NY 11215

Contact: Perri Litton, volunteer coordinator

718-928-3320, info@brooklynpride.org

Mission: To produce Pride and community events that commemorate, educate, promote, and celebrate the spirit of the Stonewall Riots. This is a year-round endeavor, culminating with a Pride Fun Run, Multicultural Festival, Parade, and Pride after Party.

Volunteer needs and skills: They welcome everyone as a volunteer; all they ask is that they come with respect for the LGBT community. They are always looking for individuals to help with fundraising efforts, setup for the day of events, research, and much more.

Minimum age: 18 without parental involvement

Time commitment: from March to June, 20 hours a month; from July to February, 5 to 10 hours a month.

Family volunteer opportunities: Yes

High school community service: No

Brooklyn Public Library

10 Grand Army Plaza, Brooklyn, NY 11238

Contact: Noel Keeler, 718-230-2406

718-230-2406, volunteer@brooklynpubliclibrary.org

Mission: It is the mission of the Brooklyn Public Library (BPL) to ensure the preservation and transmission of society’s knowledge, history and culture, and to provide the people of Brooklyn with free and open access to information for education, recreation, and reference.

Volunteer needs and skills: Excellent communication skills; responsive to supervision; ability to get along with a diverse group of people; promote the use of library resources by referring patrons to specialists at the library

Minimum age: 14

Time commitment: 12 weeks to 6 months, depending on assignment

Family volunteer opportunities: No

High school community service: Yes

Brooklyn South CERT (Community Emergency Response Team)

1419 Dorchester Avenue, Brooklyn, NY 11226

Contact: Glenn Wolin, 917-348-1704 or 718-284-5761

Mission: To supplement New York City’s first responders during and after a disaster. To inform our neighbors about the need for personal disaster preparedness and the appropriate steps to take.

Volunteer needs and skills: There is a place for almost everyone on our team

Minimum age: 18

Time commitment: 10 three-hour training sessions and then active participation on our team (approximately 3-6 hours per month)

Family volunteer opportunities: Yes

High school community service: No

Brooklyn Watercolor Society

186 Carlton Avenue, Brooklyn, NY 11205

Contact: Albert Massini

718-797-4189, albertmassimi@verizon.net, info@bws.org

Mission: To spread knowledge and cultivate an interest in the traditional watercolor medium. To promote watercolor through lectures, art films, demonstrations, workshops, and exhibitions for the benefit of the public

Volunteer needs and skills: Computer skills, archivist, promotion

Minimum age: 18

Time commitment: Up to the volunteer

Family volunteer opportunities: Yes

High school community service placement: No

CAMBA

1720 Church Avenue, Brooklyn, NY 11226

Contact: info@camba.org, (718) 287-2600

Mission: CAMBA is a non-profit agency that provides services that connect people with opportunities to enhance their quality of life.

Volunteer needs and skills: Assist with our annual food drive (handing out flyers and assist with receiving donated food); computer skills (data entry), communication skills; Social worker (social services, engaging in conversation with participants and forwarding them to the correct department and following up); Maintenance worker (assist in cleaning and painting); Food Pantry Assistance (walking participants through the pantry on service days, bagging, restocking shelves, breaking down boxes, receiving deliveries); Stockroom worker.

Volunteer minimum age: 18

Volunteer time commitment: 10am-2pm, at least once a week, for 3 months

Family volunteer opportunities: No

High school community service placement: No

Friends of Carroll Park

President Street and Smith Street

carrollparkbrooklyn@gmail.com

Mission: This non profit organization is dedicated to improving the park for everyone. Founded in 1975, Friends of Carroll Park is an all-volunteer group that makes our park and neighborhood a better place.

Volunteer opportunities: Including but not limited to help with: gardening, fundraising, special events, promotions, kids concerts, web design, and social media. You can also stop by the garden and see what’s happening!

Volunteer minimum age: N/A anyone is welcome

Time commitment: As little or as much as desired

Family volunteer opportunities: Yes

High school community service: Yes, but must be part of supervised group

Center for Anti-violence Education

327 7th Street, 2nd Floor, Brooklyn, NY 11215

Contact: 718-499-1775, CAEINFO@CAENY.ORG

Mission: The Center for Anti-violence Education (CAE) offers self-defense, violence prevention, and martial arts classes for children, teens, women, LGBTQ+ individuals, and other communities especially affected by violence. Classes are offered on a sliding-fee scale with free spaces available for survivors of domestic violence, sexual assault, and childhood abuse. CAE’s programs are designed to develop participants’ skills, knowledge and awareness to enable them to heal from, prevent, and counter violence. We do this work to actively create a peaceful, just, and equitable world.

Volunteer need and skills: Help with outreach for classes and events, and to participate in and/or staff our annual spring fundraiser, the Punch-a-Thon. These would include distributing flyers about upcoming classes in Park Slope and surrounding neighborhoods, compiling mailings for program outreach, assisting with the Punch-a-thon.

Minimum age: 16

Time commitment: Varies

Family volunteer opportunities: Yes

High school community service placement: Yes

Center for Family Life in Sunset Park

443 39th Street, Brooklyn, NY 11232

Contact: 718.438.9500

Mission: The mission of the Center for Family Life is to promote positive outcomes for children and families in Sunset Park through the provision of a comprehensive range of neighborhood-based social services. We partner with the community to provide access to resources and opportunities for personal growth and the development of interpersonal relationships that sustain and nurture families, support youth to develop into confident, capable adults and enrich the quality of life for neighborhood residents

Volunteer needs and skills: The Center is seeking volunteers for the computer lab at our employment program. Volunteers would have good computer skills and be able to teach basic skills and help participants search using the internet.

Volunteer minimum age: 18

Time commitment: 2 hours/week

Family volunteer opportunities: No

High school community service placement: Possible

Children of Promise, NYC

54 MacDonough Street, Brooklyn, NY 11216

718-483-9290, info@cpnyc.org

Mission: Children of Promise, NYC (CPNYC) is a Brooklyn-based organization committed to embracing and empowering children of incarcerated parents to break the cycle of intergeneration involvement in the criminal system. CPNYC’s mission is to provide children of prisoners with the guidance, support and the opportunities necessary to effectively develop leadership skills, form positive social relationships and enhance academic performance.

Volunteer needs and skills: As a volunteer, you will make a substantial impact on our work. From assisting children with their homework to developing a mentorship with a child to providing individualized tutoring, CPNYC offers volunteer opportunities 6 days a week, Monday through Saturday.

Minimum age: 17

Time commitment: Varies/flexible

Family volunteer opportunities: No

High school community service: Yes

CHIPS Park Slope

200 4th Avenue (between Sackett and Degraw)

Contact: 718-237-2962

Mission: Founded in 1972, Park Slope Christian Help, Inc. (CHIPS) is a non-profit charity organization dedicated to help the poor, the needy, the homeless, as well as those in emergency situations. The CHIPS facility includes a thriving soup kitchen that serves 200 guests daily and a women’s shelter that provides temporary housing, medical, and social services for mothers and newborns.

Volunteer needs and opportunities: Volunteers are needed from 9 am to 3 pm, Monday to Saturday.

Minimum age: 16

Time commitment: TBD

Family volunteer opportunities: Yes

High school community service: Yes

Circuit Productions, Inc.

635 Carroll Street, Suite #2, Brooklyn, NY 11215

Contact: Susan Goldbetter

718-638-4878, susangoldbetter@gmail.com

Mission: We back and manage senior and emerging artists in the area and tap jazz and world music & dance. Our mission is to inspire, entertain, and educate underserved audiences in NYC through performances, classes, workshops, and in-school & OST arts education programs.

Volunteer needs and skills: The volunteer should be available to attend occasional live events to distribute flyers or surveys on CPI; have skills or interest in any of the following: Photography, graphics or design; marketing skills; fundraising & development; great communication (phone or outreach work); computer skills

Minimum age: 25

Time commitment: As needed, at least 8 hours monthly

Family volunteer opportunities: No

High school community service: No

Congregation Beth Elohim

274 Garfield Place, Brooklyn, NY 11215

718-768-3814, info@cbebk.org

Mission: Congregation Beth Elohim is a preeminent Brooklyn institution, a spiritual, cultural, and intellectual center for Jewish revitalization, fostering community, and extending our congregational values of justice, education, and inspiration throughout the neighborhoods where we live and beyond.

Volunteer needs and skills: tutoring, food preparation, greening projects, childcare, and much more

Minimum age: 14

Time commitment: Varies with volunteer opportunity

Family volunteer opportunities: Yes

High school community service: Yes

Connection Works

Contact: 917-273-7875, connectionworksinc@gmail.com

Mission: Connection Works is an artist-run non-profit organization (501c3) that engages the Brooklyn community with world-class jazz performances and educational events. Our programs promote and facilitate new work by established and up-and-coming artists alike. We provide a forum that supports the astonishing number of brilliant artists in our borough. We at Connection Works believe in and support the practice of creativity as a means to nourish the mind, body, and spirit.

Volunteer needs and skills: Distribute flyers and posters, printing, general help at events including set-up, tear-down, selling CDs, updating the website, grant writing, website postings.

Minimum age: 15

Time commitment: No specific requirements, just trustworthy

Family volunteer opportunities: No

High school community service: Yes

Falconworks Artists Group

PO Box 310283, Brooklyn, NY 11231

Contact: 718-395-3218, info@falconworkstheater.org

Mission: Social change through theater.

Volunteer needs and skills: Theater skills including acting, directing, stage management, tech, etc.; fundraising; general office work.

Minimum age: 18

Time commitment: Varies – 1 day to a regular schedule

Family volunteer opportunity: Yes

High school community service: Yes

Families First

250 Baltic Street, Brooklyn, NY 11201

Contact: Paula Heitman

718-237-1862, beth.winson@familiesfirstbrooklyn.org

Mission: To support and enrich the lives of Brooklyn families.

Volunteer needs and skills: Marketing, web design and development, graphic design, grant research, grant writing, technology support, and office support.

Minimum age: 14

Time commitment: 5 hours+

Family volunteer opportunities: No

High school community service: Yes

The Family Center

493 Nostrand Avenue Brooklyn, NY 11216

718-230-1379

Mission: The Family Center works to strengthen families affected by illness, crisis, or loss to create a more secure present and future for children by providing comprehensive legal and social services, education, and research. Our work is fueled by the belief that every child deserves an answer to the question: Who will take care of me?

Volunteer needs and skills: The Family Center is looking for adult volunteers for a junior board volunteering opportunity called the Leadership Council. The Leadership Council (LC) develops initiatives that empower our clients and annually organize and host several major fundraising events, such as toy drive and the Harvest Ball. Members and participants serve as Family Center advocates to their corporate employers, who may be interested in supporting our programming.

Minimum age: 21

Time commitment: 4 months

Family volunteer opportunities: No

High school community service placement: No

Fifth Avenue Committee

621 DeGraw Street, Brooklyn 11217

Contact: 718-237-2017

Mission: FAC is a community development corporation whose mission is to advance social and economic justice by building vibrant, diverse communities whose residents and workers have genuine opportunities to achieve their goals, as well as the power to shape the community’s future. FAC develops and manages affordable housing and community facilities, creates employment opportunities, organizes residents and workers, and offers student-centered adult education, offers re-entry support for the formerly incarcerated, and combat displacement caused by gentrification.

Volunteer needs and skills: FAC seeks volunteers to assist with programmatic and administrative support. Volunteers should possess strong writing, math, verbal, organizational, and interpersonal communication skills. They should also be enthusiastic about FAC’s mission, have interest or experience in working in a non-profit organization, be comfortable working with individuals of diverse backgrounds.

Minimum age: 18

Time commitment: Varies

Family volunteer opportunities: No

High school community service: Yes, on a selective basis

Flatbush Reformed Church Soup Kitchen

890 Flatbush Avenue Brooklyn, NY 11226

Contact: Reverend Cheri Kroon

revkroon@flatbushchurch.org

Mission: We are called to care for one another, we are called to make sure that our neighbor does not go hungry. So in response to the need in Flatbush, we serve two free, hot lunches every week; one on Wednesday and another on Saturday. Both meals are served in our Church House which is located behind the sanctuary and adjacent to the cemetery.

Volunteer needs and skills: No specific knowledge or experience working in a kitchen is required, just a willingness to work with others in putting together a good meal. Come in between 9 and 10 am on a Wednesday or Saturday and join us. See what the experience is like here.

Minimum age: Teens, younger kids welcome with adult supervision

Time commitment: Drop in on any Wednesday or Saturday

Family volunteer opportunities: Yes

Groups from schools, organizations of all kinds and faith communities are welcome as well!

High school community service: No

Free Arts NYC

1431 Broadway, 7th floor, New York, NY 10018

Contact: 212-974-9092, info@freeartsnyc.org

Mission: Free Arts provides under-served children and families with a unique combination of educational arts and mentoring programs that help them to foster the self-confidence and resilency needed to realize their fullest potential.

Volunteer needs and skills: No arts or education background required; just the desire to be a positive adult role model. Bi-lingual and afternoon available volunteers are a high priority. You can volunteer with them in the Bronx, Manhattan, and Brooklyn.

Minimum age: 14-18 with an adult, 18 otherwise

Time commitment: Varies, single day to weekly (2.5 hours)

Family volunteer opportunities: Children ages 14-18 can volunteer at Art Prep parties if accompanied by an adult.

High school community service: No

The Gallery Players

199 14th Street, Brooklyn, NY 11215

718-595-0547, info@galleryplayers.com

Mission: To provide the Brooklyn community with professional quality theater at an affordable cost, to nurture and support theater artists, and to cultivate an appreciation of theater in future generations.

Volunteer needs and skills: Show ushers; volunteers for building set – no experience needed.

Minimum age: 14

Time commitment: Flexible

Family volunteer opportunities: Yes

High school community service: Yes

Good Shepherd Services

305 7th Avenue, 9th Floor, New York, NY 10001

Contact: 212-243-7070

Mission: We envision a New York City where children grow up in thriving neighborhoods, and all individuals and families can build on their strengths to realize their fullest potential. Guided by social and racial justice, Good Shepherd Services partners and grows with communities so that all NYC children, youth, and families succeed and thrive.

Volunteer needs and skills: Can volunteer in Brooklyn. Mentoring to provide positive guidance and skills-building to adolescent boys and girls who reside in our group residences, supportive housing program, or foster homes. Corporate volunteering opportunities.

Volunteer minimum age: 18

Volunteer time commitment: Varies

Family volunteer opportunities: No

High school community service: No

GrowNYC

PO Box 2327, New York NY 10272

212-788-7900, sign-up via website form is required

Mission: GrowNYC is a hands-on non-profit which improves New York City’s quality of life through environmental programs that transform communities block by block and empower all New Yorkers to secure a clean and healthy environment for future generations. Over the past 40 years we’ve worked to become more engaged with New York City and its citizens. Whether it’s operating the world-famous Union Square Greenmarket, building a new community garden, teaching young people about the environment, or improving recycling awareness, if you’re a New Yorker, GrowNYC is working near you!

Volunteer opportunity: GrowNYC has several types of volunteer opportunities often based at your local greenmarket including public outreach, cooking demonstrations, food scrap collection, garden maintenance, event recycling, and translation. Prospective volunteers must first register in order to sign up for activities.

Minimum volunteer age: 18

Family volunteer opportunities: No

High school community service: No

College community service: Yes

Heights & Hills

81 Willoughby Street, Suite 302, Brooklyn, NY 11201

Contact: 718-596-8789, volunteer@heightsandhills.org

Mission: To help older Brooklynites to be independent and safe for as long as possible through advocacy and the provision of programs and services that support and empower the elderly and their families.

Volunteer needs and skills: Board members – with leadership, management, strategic vision skills. Community organizers for Community Empowerment for Aging in Place project.

Minimum age: Adults

Time commitment: Variable

Family volunteer opportunities: No

High school community service: No

Henry Street Settlement Senior Companion Program

265 Henry Street, New York, NY, 10002

Contact: Rachel Hughes, Program Director

Phone: 212.473.1474 ext. 1336 Email: rhughes@henrystreet.org

Mission: Engage retired individuals aged 55+ in service that meets pressing community needs.

Volunteer needs and skills: Volunteers provide companionship and assistance with daily tasks for seniors who are homebound or isolated.

Volunteer minimum age: 55

Volunteer time commitment: 10-40 hours per week

Family volunteer opportunities: No

High school community service: No

The HOPE Program

One Smith Street, Brooklyn, NY 11201

Contact: 347.773.4623

Mission: To empower individuals living in poverty to achieve economic self-sufficiency and to inform practices and policy by sharing our research and solutions.

Volunteer needs and skills: Our volunteer opportunities include tutoring students who are preparing to take the GED exam; participating in mock interviews and reviewing resumes; providing one-on-one assistance in our computer lab to program participants looking for jobs; and providing supportive services to HOPE staff during our ongoing classes and orientation sessions for new students.

Volunteer minimum age: 21

Volunteer time commitment: 3-5 hours per week

Family volunteer opportunities: No

High school community service: No

The Humane Society of the United States

306 East 59th Street, New York, NY 10022

Contact: Sandra DeFeo, (212) 752-4842 ext. 233, sandra.hsny@verizon.net

Mission: The nation’s largest animal protection organization – backed by 11 million Americans, or one of every 28. For more than half a century, the HSUS has been fighting for the protection of all animals through advocacy, education and hands-on programs. Celebrating animals and confronting cruelty.

Volunteer needs and skills: Volunteers are currently needed to help with public outreach efforts for our ongoing animal protection campaigns and Pets for Life NYC pet surrender prevention program. Staff our hotlines to connect New Yorkers with resources to keep their pets, help recruit or provide foster homes, and more.

Minimum age: 18

Time commitment: Varies, a minimum of 15 hours per month

Family volunteer opportunities: Yes

High school community service: No

Imani House

76A Fifth Avenue, Brooklyn, NY 11217

Contact: (718) 638-2059 or (718) 638-2165, imani@imanihouse.org

Mission: To assist low-income youth, families, and immigrants to create viable neighborhoods where residents are decision makers who take responsibility for the improvement of their lives and communities.

Volunteer needs and skills: Tutoring, GED, ESL, Adult Literacy

Minimum age: 21

Time commitment: 2 hours a week

Family volunteer opportunities: No

High school community service placement: Yes

iMentor

199 Water St., 8th Floor, New York, NY 10038

Contact: Ask for a member of the volunteer team, 212-461-4330, info@imentor.org

Mission: To improve the lives of young people from underserved communities in NYC through innovative, technology-based approaches to youth mentoring and education. iMentor uses mentoring to bridge the divide between NYC’s diverse communities so that mentees are better equipped with the skills and resources critical for personal, academic, and career success.

Volunteer needs and skills: Comfort with the internet and basic computer skills.

Minimum age: 21

Time commitment: 6 hours per month

Family volunteer opportunities: No

High school community service: No

Jewish Community Council of Greater Coney Island / Friendly Visiting

3001 West 37th Street, Brooklyn, NY 11224

Contact: 718-449-5000, info@jccgci.org

Mission: Our mission is to connect homebound seniors by connecting them with friendly, warm, and committed volunteer visitors who can provide them with companionship for an hour or two each week. Friendly visits bring some sunshine into the otherwise bleak world of homebound seniors as well as allowing the senior to maintain important social contacts.

Volunteer needs and skills: Looking for someone caring, friendly, and responsible who is interested in visiting homebound seniors.

Minimum age: 16

Time commitment: 1 hour per week

Family volunteer opportunities: Yes

High school community service: No

Kings County District Attorney

350 Jay Street, Brooklyn, NY 11201

Contact: Michelle Desir

718-250-2678, desirm@brooklynda.org

Mission: The Kings County District Attorney is the chief law enforcement agency of Brooklyn and has a variety of crime prevention programs and initiatives. The goal of various community-based and mentorship intervention programs is to promote rehabilitation and the reduction of recidivism among Brooklyn’s court-involved and at-risk youth.

Minimum age: 25, high school internships also available for 16+

Time commitment: Variable

Family volunteer opportunities: No

High school community service placement: Yes

The LAMP (Learning About Multimedia Project)

110 W. 34th Street, Suite 807, New York, NY 10001

Contact: 212-947-5267, info@thelampnyc.org

Mission: Critically engaged media makers and users are key to a thriving 21st-century world. The LAMP works to achieve this by empowering youth, parents, and educators throughout New York City with hands-on training and media fluency designed to build community, responsibility, and activism across the media landscape. There is also a monthly newsletter of volunteer opportunities. People can join that mailing list by visiting here.

Volunteer needs and skills: Skills in graphic/web design, podcasting, blogging, digital media, archiving. Duties: assisting in workshops; facilitators for workshops, blogging, podcasting, fundraising.

Minimum age: 18

Time commitment: Varies with duties

Family volunteer opportunities: No

High school community service: No

Legal Information for Families Today (LIFT)

32 Court Street, Suite 1203, Bklyn, NY 11201

Contact: (646) 613-9633, volunteer@LIFTonline.org.

Mission: To enhance access to justice for children and families by providing legal information, community education, and compassionate guidance, while promoting system-wide reform of the courts and public agencies.

Volunteer needs and skills: Volunteer opportunities with LIFT include financial literacy workshop facilitators, mentoring, helping families in the NYC Family Courts, answering legal questions on LIFT’s hotline, language translation, helping on LIFT’s website, assisting with legal education workshops, and helping New Yorkers access justice in Brooklyn Criminal Court.

Minimum age: 21

Time commitment: 3 months

Family volunteer opportunity: No

High school community service placement: No

Lesbian Herstory Archives

484 14th Street, Brooklyn, NY 11215

Contact: Leave a message and a coordinator will get back to you

718-768-3953

Mission: To gather, preserve and share with the community all aspects of Lesbian history and culture; to serve as a cultural center for the Lesbian community.

Volunteer needs and skills: A range of skills, interests, and activities are represented in our volunteers. Archival and library skills and experiences are not necessary.

Minimum age: Teenagers and up

Time commitment: Individualized

Family volunteer opportunities: No

High school community service: Case by case

Little Essentials

15 Warren Street, New York, NY 10007

Contact: 646-850-3611, info@littleessentials.org

Mission: This is a community-based organization, founded by Park Slope resident Sandie Trombert, that helps keep families together by providing free baby and toddler (to age 4) clothing, gear, toys, and other essential items to Brooklyn families living in poverty. Little Essentials helps keep children safe (in cribs, cars seats, and clothing); lifts the spirits and provides hope to their parents; takes care of our environment by reusing items that are only briefly used.

Minimum age: 12 with parent supervision

Time commitment: A few hours per month

Family volunteer opportunities: Yes

High school community service: Yes

Mark Morris Dance Group

3 Lafayette Avenue, Brooklyn, NY 11217

718-624-8400

Mission: Mark Morris Dance Group’s mission is to develop, promote, and sustain dance, music, and opera productions by Mark Morris and serve as a cultural resource to engage and enrich the community.

Volunteer needs and skills: An interest in dance and/or music; basic computer skills (MS Word, Excel, etc.) are often required.

Volunteer minimum age: 18

Time commitment: TBD

Family volunteer opportunities: No

High school community service placement: Yes, but case by case

Neighbors Helping Neighbors

621 DeGraw Street, Brooklyn, NY 11217

Contact: 718-237-2017

Mission: To empower low- and moderate-income Brooklyn residents to secure quality housing and build financial assets.

Volunteer needs and skills: Spanish speaking if possible. Interest in community organizing, working with low-income tenants regarding affordable housing policy, community events, tenant meetings regarding building outreach, and advocacy.

Minimum age: 19/or through special school-based programs

Time commitment: Minimum 6 hours per week, though flexible

Family volunteer opportunities: No

High school community service: Yes

New York City Children’s Theater

340 East 46th Street, New York, NY 10017

Contact: 212-573-8791 x2, nhogsett@nycchildrenstheater.org

Mission: To promote children’s literacy and social development through professional theater productions and arts-in-education programs.

Volunteer needs and skills: Social media, IT, ushering, front of house staff, production assistant, knowledge of and passion for children’s theater and arts education.

Minimum Age: 18

Time commitment: Varies

Family volunteer opportunities: Yes

High school community service placement: Yes

New York Methodist Hospital

506 6th Street, Brooklyn, NY 11215

Contact: Mimi Makovitzky, 718-780-5397

718-780-5399, mim9012@nyp.org

Mission: The mission of New York Methodist Hospital, a member of the New York Presbyterian Health system, is to serve the health care needs of our community.

Minimum age: 16

Time commitment: 8 hours/week, 2X/week, minimum of 6 months

Family volunteer opportunities: No

High school community service placement: Yes

Old Stone House of Brooklyn

336 3rd Street, PO Box 150613, Brooklyn, NY 11215

Contact: 718.768.3195, info@theoldstonehouse.org

Mission: To celebrate the rich history of the Old Stone House and its role in the Battle of Brooklyn in August 1776, and the ensuing history of America, as well as being a strong cultural resource

Volunteer needs and skills: Park care, garden and tree pit maintenance, summer event volunteers, gallery docents.

Minimum age: 15; younger with adult accompaniment

Time commitment: Flexible

Family volunteer opportunities: Yes

High school community service placement: Yes

Park Slope Civic Council

123 Seventh Avenue, Brooklyn, NY 11215

Contact: outreach@parkslopeciviccouncil.org

Mission: To advocate on behalf of the Park Slope neighborhood.

Volunteer needs and skills: Community outreach and organizing, computer skills.

Minimum age: None

Time commitment: Discretionary

Family volunteer opportunities: Yes

High school community service: Yes

Park Slope Fifth Avenue Business Improvement District

343 Fifth Street (Ground Floor Gallery), Brooklyn, New York 11215

Contact: 718-551-5545, 718-369-2008

Mission: The BID’s principal aim lies in promoting and maintaining this bustling commercial avenue — with a special emphasis on sanitation services, economic development programs, business assistance initiatives, and community service. The BID represents a formal organization made up of property owners and commercial tenants who are dedicated to promoting business development and improving the area’s quality of life. We deliver supplemental services such as sanitation and maintenance, public safety and visitor services, marketing and promotional programs, capital improvements, and beautification of the area.

Volunteer needs and skills: Beautification aficionados, street-furniture designers, event planners, place-makers, flower planters, carpenters, musicians, folks with a penchant for rolling up their sleeves, etc.

Minimum age: 18

Time commitment: Negotiable

Family volunteer opportunities: Yes

High school community service placement: Yes

Park Slope Volunteer Ambulance Corps

478 Bergen Street, Brooklyn, NY 11217

117 14th Street, Brooklyn, New York, New York 11215

Contact: 718.398.4500 or inquiries@psvac.org

Mission: Park slope Volunteer Ambulance Corps (PSVAC) is a volunteer emergency medical services organization. We provide basic life support to residents, workers, and visitors to the Park Slope area, regardless of the ability to pay. PSVAC also serves the community with job placement services and ambulance standbys at events.

Volunteer needs and skills: We are looking for members who are NYC Certified EMTs, however it is not a requirement to join.

Minimum age: 18 for dispatchers and attendants, 21 for drivers

Time commitment: Two eight-hour shifts per month, during the evenings

Family volunteer opportunities: No

High school community service placement: No

Partnership for Parks

95 Prospect Park West, Brooklyn, NY 11215

Contact: (212) 360-2789 or volunteer@cityparksfoundation.org

Mission: PFP is an innovative joint program of City Parks Foundation and the NYC Department of Parks & Recreation. PFP strengthens park groups, celebrates volunteers, accesses resources, connects people and government.

Volunteer needs and skills: Park stewardship, advocacy, and programming.

Minimum age: Grade-school

Time commitment: Decided by volunteer

Volunteer opportunities: Yes

High school community service: Yes

Police Athletic League (PAL)

34 1/2 East 12th Street, New York, NY 10003

Contact: 1-800-725-4543

Mission: Applying early learning and youth development strategies with an emphasis on prevention and intervention programs, PAL inspires and supports NYC youth challenged by the highest risk factors to overcome obstacles and realize their full individual potential as productive members of society. PAL offers a host of after school programs for children and teens, juvenile justice and reentry services, summer day camps, recreational programs, pre-school programs, and citywide youth contests.

Volunteer needs and skills: While PAL is a private, non-profit corporation, its civilian workforce and 1,600 volunteers facilitate more positive interactions between children, families, and the community than any other youth agency in the country.

Minimum age: 14

Time commitment: Case-by-case basis

Family volunteer opportunities: Yes

High school/college community service: Yes

Prospect Farm

1194 Prospect Avenue, Windsor Terrace

Contact: 1-800-725-4543, prospectfarmbk@gmail.com

Mission: Prospect Farm is a community group in Windsor Terrace, Brooklyn that is working together to grow food in a formerly vacant lot, with the mission of creating a Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) Farm that can serve our community. We are slowly creating healthy soil through our community composting project and farm without chemical fertilizers, pesticides or herbicides. Membership is open to all who want to improve and farm the land and sustain ties with local residents, businesses and organizations. We support the Brooklyn Food Coalition and other initiatives for food sovereignty and food justice.

Volunteer opportunities: Anyone can volunteer an hour, day or more to Prospect Farm with no commitment. Activities include planting, weeding, watering, composting, harvesting as well as assistance with social media, and working with members of the community.

Minimum age: Any age welcome

Time commitment: Up to you!

Family volunteer opportunities: Yes

High school community service: Yes

Prospect Hill Senior Services Center

283 Prospect Avenue, Brooklyn, NY 11215

Contact: Carla Zecca or Crystal Cooper

718-499-9574, info@phssonline.org

Mission: To keep our senior citizens a viable part of our community.

Volunteer needs and skills: Just have to like people.

Minimum age: 16

Time commitment: Any

Family volunteer opportunities: Yes

High school community service: Yes

Prospect Park Volunteer Corps

95 Prospect Park West, Brooklyn, NY 11215

Contact: 718) 965-8951, info@prospectpark.org

Mission: In partnership with City of New York and the community, the Prospect Park Alliance restores, develops, and operates Prospect Park for the enjoyment of all by caring for the natural environment, preserving historic design, and serving the public through facilities and programs.

Volunteer needs and skills: Outdoor gardeners, maintenance help – no experience necessary; administrative and creative skills

Minimum age: 14 or with supervision

Time commitment: No minimum

Family volunteer opportunities: Yes

High school community service: Yes

Prospect Park Zoo

450 Flatbush Avenue, Brooklyn, NY 11225

Contact: Debbie Dieneman Kein, Volunteer Coordinator

718-399-7339, ext 325, ddieneman@wcs.org

Mission: To save wildlife and wildlands through careful science, international conservation education, and the management of the world’s largest system of urban wildlife parks.

Volunteer needs and skills: Interest in animals, outgoing and personable, comfortable both indoors and outdoors. Volunteers educate the public about animals. Opportunities include zoo docents, discovery guides and discovery center volunteers.

Minimum age: 14

Time commitment: 1 shift (half day) per week

Family volunteer opportunities: Yes, we have had parent/child pairs, but only over 14

High school community service placement: Yes

RAICES

460 Atlantic Avenue, Brooklyn, N.Y. 11217

Contact: 718.643.0232

Mission: The Spanish Speaking Elderly Council – RAICES shall respond to the unmet needs of Hispanic, black, and low-income families and shall seek to improve the quality of life through advocacy and the direct provision of targeted services with work across the generations and a particular emphasis on the needs of older adults.

Volunteer needs and skills: Help serving food to seniors; painting teacher; computer teacher; exercise trainer; clerical helper; ESL teacher; art and crafts teacher; dance teacher; Spanish teacher.

Minimum age: 18

Time commitment: At least 1 hour per week

Family volunteer opportunities: Yes

High school community service: Yes

Red Hook Community Justice Center

88 Visitation Place, Brooklyn, NY 11212

Contact: Ericka Tapia

718-923-8261, shmartin@courts.state.ny.us

Mission: To bring the court and the community together to solve local problems, including drugs, youth delinquency, family dysfunction, landlord-tenant disputes and quality-of-life concerns.

Volunteer needs and skills: AmeriCorps: H.S. diploma or equivalency, 17-64. Members are placed in various criminal justice sites.

Minimum age: 17 with diploma

Time commitment: Varies

Family volunteer opportunities: Yes

High school community service: Yes

Red Hook Initiative

767 Hicks Street, Brooklyn, NY 11231

Contact: 718-858-6782, info@rhicenter.org

Mission: RHI works to confront and affect the consequences of intergenerational poverty by providing services in education, employment, health, and community development. We believe that social change starts within individuals.

Volunteer needs and skills: Tutors, outreach workers, tech-savvy folks.

Minimum age: 20

Time commitment: Varies – some weekly; some one-time

Family volunteer opportunities: Yes

High school community service: No

Safe Horizon

2 Lafayette Street, 3rd floor, New York, NY 10007

Contact: 212-577-7700, apply on their webpage

Mission: To provide support, prevent violence, and promote justice for victims of crime and abuse, their families and communities.

Volunteer needs and skills: Program Assistant: Core responsibilities: data entry, photocopying, and filing; preparation of newsletters; prepare mailings; online research; answer phones and intercom; greet clients as they arrive. Childcare Volunteer: Core responsibilities: greet clients; supervise playroom/waiting area; entertain and comfort children from 6 weeks of age and up; creatively engage children in age-appropriate games and activities.

Minimum age: 18

Time commitment: 4 hours per week for at least 6 months

Family volunteer opportunities: No

High school community service: No

School News Nationwide

490 East 28th Street, Brooklyn, NY 11226

Contact: Bill Tinglin, 718-753-9920, info@tourfortolerance.org

Mission: To educate, influence, and empower our youth through education.

Volunteer needs and skills: Interested in journalism, willing to work with children. Familiarity with video equipment and computer programs.

Minimum age: 15

Time commitment: Varies

Family volunteer opportunities: No

High school community service: Yes

Sean Casey Animal Rescue

153 East 3rd Street (between Ft Hamilton Pkwy and Caton Ave)

Contact: volunteer@nyanimalrescue.org

Mission: The purpose of this endeavor is to aid unfortunate animals in the interest of a higher quality of life. We take in rescued, confiscated, neglected, injured, ill, unmanageable, or otherwise unwanted animals from private owners, zoos, shelters, and other public organizations. These animals are cared for, and/or rehabilitated to the best of our ability and means until which time they can be found healthy, happy homes – whether it be through adoption to qualified candidates or legally released into habitats suitable to the specific species in conjunction with licensed wildlife rehabilitators.

Volunteer needs: Everything from walking dogs to socializing cats to keeping enclosures clean and comfortable. Must wear sturdy clothing you don’t mind getting dirty.

Minimum age: Under 18 must be accompanied by a parent on the first visit

Time commitment: Variable

Family volunteer opportunities: Yes

High school community service: Yes

St. Francis Xavier Youth Program

225 6th Avenue, Brooklyn, NY 11215

Contact: John Piccard, President

888-739-1047, john@sfxys.com

Mission: To make sports and activities safe and positive by providing programs and services that add value to young minds. We provide recreational and competitive youth sports for all children. Through sports we teach teamwork & sportsmanship. We provide children positive instruction. Our volunteer coaches are well trained in their roles and responsibilities. Our team parents are encouraged to participate and are utilized as coaches, assistants, and board members.

Volunteer needs and skills: We offer organized sports in coed baseball & girls softball for 5- to 17-year-olds, T-ball for 4-year-olds, soccer for 4- to 8-year-olds, golf for 7- to 10-year-olds, NFL flag football for 9- to 17-year-olds. Coaches seminars are offered to help organize the coach & their team, and offer best practices to enable the coach to grow as an instructor and mentor. Volunteers are also required to attend a child abuse prevention seminar or verify they have completed a related course for child safety.

Minimum age: 18

Time commitment: Seasonal; times will vary based on the sport

Family volunteer opportunities: Yes

High school community service: Yes

Starting Artists

211 Smith Street, Brooklyn, NY 11201

Contact: Lacey Upton, lacey@startingartists.org

Mission: Starting Artists (SA) benefits under-served middle and high school youth through hands-on training in the arts and entrepreneurship. SA’s free after-school classes in media arts and business prepare and inspire teenagers to create arts-based enterprises. The SA motto is “Get inspired. Get creative. Get to work!”

Volunteer needs and skills: SA is always seeking creative teens and adults who are excited about supporting young people and embrace the value of community arts. Volunteers donate their skills in the following areas: Programs/administration, development/fundraising, grant writing and research, marketing, outreach, facilities/renovation, teaching/mentoring and artists guest speakers.

Minimum age: 16

Time commitment: Flexible

Family volunteer opportunities: Yes

High school community service placement: Yes

Youth Service Opportunities Project

15 Rutherford Place, New York, NY 10003

Contact: (212) 598-0973, YSOP@YSOP.ORG

Mission: YSOP offers opportunities for groups of students with adults to participate in service-learning programs working directly with homeless and hungry people. YSOP does not just place volunteers in community service. We offer a comprehensive program with orientation, service, reflection and meals.

Volunteer needs and skills: Willingness to serve and interest in homelessness and hunger.

Minimum age: 12 with adult

Time commitment: Varies

Family volunteer opportunities: Yes

High school community service: Yes

This post was originally posted June 10, 2013 and was last updated on March 4, 2020.

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