"The Y's volunteer program is crucial to fulfilling our mission by building relationships within the community, and gets the word out about our unique support for young adults. It also helps to provide a better representation of the community surrounding the Y, and promotes social responsibility. The impact of the volunteer program in the community is evident through the volunteers becoming more aware of the realities surrounding young adults exiting the foster care system, and/or experiencing homelessness." -Glenn, Y volunteer
Work With Us As a Student Intern
Internship: Make a difference in the lives of young people while completing your internship. Opportunities in counseling, social work, fundraising, administration, education and more. Limited availability.
Cook and Serve a Meal
Housing Community Meal: Cook a community meal or provide gift basket for young adults living in Y housing programs. Various evenings and locations.
Offer Coaching for Job Readiness or Careers
Mentor: A mentor provides informational interviews, coaching and other support to youth and young adults (ages 15-25) who may have experienced foster care, the juvenile justice system, and/or homelessness. Work with a young adult to support career goals through various activities and discussions. Short and long-term opportunities available. Full position description here.
Build Capacity for a Stronger Y
Research: Research best practices (or community resources) for housing and independent living support. Organize existing resources on an ongoing basis on YMCA Sharepoint site.
Legislative Specialist: Research legislator positions on issues affecting Y communities, such as affordable housing, funding for mental health services, healthy living initiatives and more. Assist with legislator engagement and education.
Administrative and Business Support: Help with reference checks for youth moving into housing, administrative tasks, data entry, filing, reception, event planning, pulling credit reports, and other essential projects supporting direct services.
Second Language Interpreter: Assist young adult participants with limited English proficiency at life skills classes or in housing. Potentially translate materials and/or help conduct outreach to underserved groups. Volunteers should be proficient in a second language and/or experienced translators. Volunteers will be placed on a list to call as needed.
Community Support Campaign: Be a campaigner during our annual fundraising campaign. Volunteers engage colleagues, businesses, friends, family or others in the mission of the YMCA and help raise money to support needed programs for youth.
Board of Managers: Provide leadership for the YMCA. Responsibilities include oversight of the strategic plan and budget, visioning and fundraising. Additional opportunities available for specific committees without Board service.
Organize a Gift Drive
Donation Drive: The young adults served by the YMCA often need various good and supplies that community members like you can help to supply. Organize a drive in your church, school, neighborhood or office for one or more of the items listed below. Ask for a toolkit you can use to set up your own community drive.
Teach a Skill
Drop-In Center Teacher: Volunteer to teach a specific skill--Microsoft Excel, how to buy a car, resume writing, etc.--in a small group, drop-in class, or 1:1.
Assist Youth in Moving
Moving Support: Many young adults do not have a car or a truck and do not have family to help them make the transition from foster care/homelessness into housing. Volunteers are needed to assist individuals with moving. A truck may not be necessary in all cases. A volunteer will be placed on a list of people to call when help is needed. YMCA staff will coordinate logistics.
Support a Special Event
Signature Events: Volunteer to serve meals, set-up/take-down and other helpful services at our annual holiday events (November/December), Back-to-School BBQ, or our annual spring Independent Living Conference