Almost every week there's a different volunteer opportunity on or off campus.
From working with Kids Against Hunger to packaging boxes of food to creating blankets for babies at local hospitals or performing service at the House of Hope, there's no shortage of ways to get involved and make a positive impact on the community. In fact, each student club or organization performs two service projects each year. Campus Ministry also offers a wide variety of service opportunities throughout the year. If you are from a local non-profit agency who has volunteer opportunities available, please fill out the following volunteer request form and we will post the information up on this website for faculty, staff, and students. Thank You!
**Track Your Volunteer Hours**
Once you have finished a volunteer project, please fill out one of our volunteer tracking forms below so that we can keep track of all the service being done in the Cedar Rapids community by our faculty, staff, and students.
*Highlighted Service Opportunities*
Come learn about global hunger and help raise funds to feed those in hunger during Mount Mercy University's 30 Hour Famine event! On October 16-17th, students will gather to discuss and reflect on global hunger. The event will also include a Kids Against Hunger Meal Packing event on Saturday. A $35 donation is recommended to help feed one child for a month. To register, please visit the following link. For more information, contact Marisa Moon at email@example.com or Isaiah Corbin at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Join Mount Mercy University's Sleep Out For The Homeless Team on November 7th at Vets Memorial Stadium. The event is meant to help raise awareness and money while benefiting the homeless in our community. Registration is $10 and you can sign-up for Mount Mercy's team at the following link! For more information, please contact Isaiah Corbin at email@example.com.
It is that time of the year! Come help serve tables for the Catherine McAuley Center at their 19th Annual Catherine's Tea on October 11th from 12:30-3:30. No serving experience is required. Please contact Isaiah Corbin at firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
The Vietnam Faculty Series is looking for volunteers for their upcoming exhibit. The gallery space will be open for longer periods of times so faculty, staff, and students are needed to serve as docents by welcoming people to the exhibit. Shifts will begin on Wednesday, October 7th and run through Sunday, October 25th. To sign-up, visit the following link or contact Kristy Raine at email@example.com for more information.
Join us for our annual Halloween on the Hill. Halloween on the Hill partners with local organizations to provide children in our local community a safe and fun environment where they can eat pizza, play crafts and games, and go trick-or-treating! To volunteer, visit here. For more information, contact Isaiah Corbin at firstname.lastname@example.org
The Young Parents Network is looking for volunteers for its Ready to Read program at Taylor and Hoover Elementary. The evenings will consist of a meal, instruction, and reading time. Help is needed with childcare and supervision. Hoover Elementary will meet from 5:30-7:30 on October 5th and November 2nd and Taylor Elementary will meet from 3:30-5:30 on October 13th and November 10th. For more information, please contact Crystal Hall at email@example.com.
Care Drop is an organization for people who need support and help taking care of their loved ones. They will be doing a cleanup day on Saturday, October 3rd from 9:00-1:00 PM. To join, meet at the Geometric Building's 1st Floor. For more information, contact Trevor Carlton at firstname.lastname@example.org or register here.
Catholic Charities is looking for students who would be interested in helping watch and entertain children while their parents take part in English classes. The class will take place on Wednesday nights from 7:00-8:30 PM.. For more information, contact Agnes Kress at email@example.com.
Community Outreach and Educational Opportunities
- The Boys and Girls Club is looking for after-school volunteers from 4:00-6:00 PM. Everyone Monday-Thursday is "Power Hour" in which youth members are involved in educational activities such as homework, reading, educational games, and STEM activities. Friday is "Friday Fee Day," a day of mostly games and fun. Locations are at Taylor Elementary, Hoover Elementary, and Olivet Neighborhood Mission. For more information, please contact Jenny Emerson at firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Gigi's Playhouse in Cedar Rapids is looking for volunteers to help out at their Down Syndrome Achievement Center. At their playhouse, they have many programs including tutoring, gross motor, socialization, and family mentoring. All of the programs are always free to their families, and Gigi's Playhouse depends on volunteers to help that happen. For more information on how to volunteer, please contact Sherrie Duval at email@example.com or by phone at (319) 360-2711. Information can also be found at http://gigisplayhouse.org/cedar-rapids/.
- Catholic Charities of the Archdiocese of Dubuque in Cedar Rapids is in need of volunteers for its jail & prison ministries, resource advocates, and refugee resettlement team. The opportunities are diverse and endless. For more information about how to get involved, visit their website or contact Agnes Kress at firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Young Parents Network is in need of volunteers for their Prenatal and Parenting Group Meetings. The group is for pregnant and parenting families under the age of 27 with children under 5 years of age. The program offers weekly group meetings on Thursday night (5:30-7:00), and they are looking for volunteers to help provide on-site childcare. For more information please contact Mallory Landuyt at email@example.com.
- The Henry Davison Youth Center provides a safe place for children to go after school, and provides meals so that they do not go home hungry. The Center is looking for volunteers as well as possible Board members. Center volunteers would help with children who attend the after school (and summer) program, help with meal prep and distribution, and daily office duties. For more information, please visit their website or contact Sandy Sublett at firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Garfield Elementary is looking for volunteers on a daily, weekly, and monthly basis. There are a diverse number of activities that you can help with including helping in the classroom, reading to students, listening to students read, cafeteria helper, and more! If you are interested, please contact Barb Hart by phone at (319) 558-2175 or by email at email@example.com.
- Girls on the Run is a transformational physical activity based positive youth development program for girls in 3rd-8th grade. They teach life skills through dynamic, interactive lessons and running games. The program culminates with girls being physically and emotionally prepared to complete a celebratory 5k running event. They are in need of volunteer coaches at Kenwood and Wright Elementary. Coaches commit to 10-20 practices over the course of the 10-week session with the seasons beginning in September and mid-February. For more information, please contact Hailee Sandberg at firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Iowa Legal Aid provides free, high quality legal education, advice, and representation to lower income and elderly Iowans with civic legal problems that most dramatically affect Iowa's poor and vulnerable population. They are in need of volunteer receptionists. If you are interested, please contact Iowa Legal aid at email@example.com.
- HADSA's mission is to provide education, support, and advocacy to those individuals, their friends, families, professionals, in the eastern Iowa that are blessed by Down syndrome. They need volunteers in a variety of ways to help build and create a capacity to fulfill their mission. For more information, please visit their website at www.HADSA.org.
- Kids on Course is a nonprofit program of the Zach Johnson Foundation, in cooperation with the Cedar Rapids Community District. They provide tutoring, enrichment, parent engagement strategies, and health supports to put students on course to graduate college. Each child reaches his or her academic and individual potential through creative and inventive opportunities that connect students and families to the community, school, and higher learning. For more information about how to get involved, please contact Luke Reynolds at Lreynolds@kidsoncoursecr.com.
- Horizons is looking for volunteers to help with their Meals on Wheels program in Cedar Rapids. Volunteers are needed to help with the food line and the delivery of meals between 8:00 AM and 2:30 PM every day of the week. If you are interested, please contact Sherita Jenkins at SJenkins@horizonsfamily.org or at (319) 398-3943 x 1012.
- Care Initiatives Hospice is looking for caring, compassionate people to become hospice volunteers. As a hospice volunteer, you may hold a hand, listen to memorier and stories, read a story, share a special talent, give a hug, touch a heart, and change a life. Volunteers are matched with a patient and the volunteer determines thier own schedule. Volunteers will be visiting someone in thier own private residence or a nursing facility. Training will be provided. For more information, please contact Sarah Walters at (319) 390-4161 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Taylor Elementary is looking for volunteers on a daily, weekly, and monthly basis. There are a diverse number of opportunities including helping in the classroom, reading and listening to students, assisting in the cafeteria and more! For more information, please contact Joanna Green at JGreen@cr.k12.ia.us.
- Theatre Cedar Rapids is always looking for volunteers to usher at their productions. Theatre Cedar Rapids always has productions taking place, and there are available opportunies to usher for the show. If you usher, you get to see the show for free and you help make attending the show better for the audience. Please visit their website if you would like to sign-up to usher. There are limited opportunities available but there will be a new season starting in September with Into the Woods.
- Feed Iowa First in collaboration with other agencies has a volunteer opportunity available. Volunteer would serve as a Produce Advocate and would display fresh produce at local food pantries and provide nutritional education while interacting with clients. The volunteer would have to set up/take down the farmer’s market stall, weigh and record pounds of produce before and after shift, provide referrals to appropriate clients (training provided), and actively engage clients on produce nutrition, facts and healthy eating habits. Time Required to Volunteer: 2-3 hours per week. Various times and locations available. Volunteer Qualifications: need own transportation with proof of insurance and must be able to lift 30 lbs. Volunteer Skills Needed: Creativity, cultural awareness, organization and presentation skills, teamwork, and verbal communication skills.Training is provided prior to start. Benefits to the Volunteer: Obtain experience working with non-profits, interact with people from various backgrounds, freedom to use marketing skills and creativity to promote healthy eating habits, and do something rewarding while helping out local families. Contact: Samantha Wittrock at email@example.com for more information if interested in getting invovled. Feed Iowa First is a local non-profit agency in Cedar Rapids and you can learn more about the organization at their Facebook page or at their website.
- The Willis Dady Emergency Shelter- Homeless Shelter is in need of Overnight Volunteers! The overnight shift would start at 10 PM and end at 6 AM. Your job would be to answer the phone and be at the shelter in case of the rare emergency. During these hours, the volunteer can watch tv, work, sleep, etc. Overnight volunteers must be at least 18 years of age, though a child may volunteer with a parent. Contact Joseph Sorensen at the Willis Dady Emergency Shelter at (319) 362-7555 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org to get more information and to volunteer.
- Families Helping Families is looking for a volunteer to manage bookkeeping processes for their organization. The commitment is 6-8 hours per month. Bookkeeping experience is required. To learn more and sign up click here.
- PUSH-CR is also in need of crews of two to three people, once or twice per month, to pick up items from peoples' homes and/or hotels and them to our PUSH storage location on 2nd Avenue SE, close to downtown. This would be a four hour shift, once or twice per month and a Four Oaks, AHNI, or Jane Boyd employee would drive the box truck.
- The Blue Zones Project Cedar Rapids is in need of volunteers. You can visit this link to get more information and get signed up to be involved. This is a great way to get involved in a community effort.
- For those interested in volunteer with Cedar Valley Habitat for Humanity, please visit their online signup form to get signed up to volunteer and learn about volunteer opportunities. If groups are looking for larger group opportunities, please email Timothy Salis at email@example.com.
- HACAP Food Reservoir is looking for volunteers who would be willing to come in and help with the sorting and packaging of food. Volunteers are welcome to contact the HACAP Food Reservoir to set up a time to come volunteer based on their schedule. Please contact the HACAP Food Reservoir through Greg Goodell at firstname.lastname@example.org or by calling 319-739-0593.
- The Arc of East Central Iowa is always looking for volunteers to help with office tasks and their upcoming special events throughout the year. Contact Lexi Coberly at LCoberly@arceci.org if you want to find out more information.
- Garnett Place is in need of student volunteers to spend time with residents. There are many different opportunities including serving snacks and beverages during weekly Happy Hour, playing games after supper, watching movies, leading craft activities, calling out BINGO, or playing cards. For more information, please contact Erin Troll at email@example.com.
- DeMolay is an organization dedicated to preparing young men to lead successful, happy, and productive lives. DeMolay opens doors for young men aged 12 to 21 by developing civic awareness, personal responsibility, and leadership skills. The Cedar Rapids Chapter meets on the third floor of the Cedar Rapids Scottish Rite on the 1st and 3rd Thursday of each month with other activities on the 2nd and 4th Thursday. They are currently looking for young leaders who are willing to help guide and mentor members and also participate in activities. For more information, please contact Kyle Martin at iasmc@firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Mentorship Connection has a minimum of 1 year commitment and requires at least four hours of one on one time per month with additional contacts by phone, email, etc. on a weekly basis. No limit on amount of volunteers needed for this opportunity. The mission of The Arc's Mentorship Connection program is to provide opportunities for community members to be matched in one-to-one friendships with individuals who have an intellectual and/or developmental disability. This gives people with disabilities the opportunity to form relationships and spend time out in the community that they would likely not get in any other way. It is an invaluable experience for both the mentor (community member) and the mentee (person with I/DD).
- Children of Promise is a nonprofit organization that works with youth ages 6-17 who have parent (s) who are currently involved with the judicial system or are incarcerated. They are seeking mentors who are 18+ years of age to mentor youth enrolled in their program. Mentors are asked to volunteer for four hours a month, or an hour a week, over the course of one year with their mentee or little. These interactions are always based on having fun and being a great role model for these young people. For more information on how to get involved, please contact Jenny Evans at email@example.com.
- Young Parents Network is in need of volunteers for their prenatal class. The class is for pregnant and parenting families under the age of 27 with children under 5 years of age. The program offers weekly group meetings on Thursday night, and they are looking for volunteers to help provide on-site childcare. For more information, please contact Crystal Hall at firstname.lastname@example.org or by calling (319) 364-8909.
- The Iowa Department on Aging is seeking volunteers for their Volunteer Ombudsman Program (VOP). The volunteer will spend a minimum of three hours per month in unannounced and varied visits to residents in long-term care facilities. They will observe, listen, and interact with residents to identify their concerns. The program will help aid and empower residents in resolving those concerns. For more information, please contact Cairn Reisch at email@example.com or by calling (515) 725-3340.
- The Ronald McDonald House Charities of Eastern Iowa is looking for weekly volunteers for their family room at St. Luke's Hospital in Cedar Rapids. Volunteers are needed to perform duties such as cleaning, doing laundry, preparing rooms for families, preparing family meals, and other general office tasks. To get involved, contact Jenny Bosking at firstname.lastname@example.org or visit www.rmhc-eiwi.org.
Additional Resources for Volunteer Opportunities
If you are interested in finding more volunteer opportunities that are availble, please visit the Volunteer Now database provided by the United Way of East Central Iowa. You can find opportunities based on your interests and can receive all the information required to sign-up and get involved. If you do not live in the area covered by the United Way of East Central Iowa, check out your hometown area United Way Agency for opportunities.