May 2015 - Twin Cities Family Volunteer Opportunities



May 2015 - Twin Cities 


Buckthorn Blast  

Great River Greening


Date/Time: Saturday, May 16, 8:30am - 12:30pm


Location: Katharine Abbott Park, 1000 Lincolntown Ave, Mahtomedi  


Be a part of the effort to restore a metro area gem! Join volunteers in removing buckthorn and other woody invasives to help restore our native landscape and secure the legacy of Minnesota land and waters. Help us complete the buckthorn removal at the park. Volunteers will be doing a mix of cutting and stacking.  


Ages: Families are welcome to volunteer


Time Commitment: Four hours 


Contact: Jen Kader at 651.665.9500 ext. 11, Registration is available online



Trout Brook Nature Sanctuary Planting  

Great River Greening


Date/Time: Saturday, May 30, 8:30am - 12:30pm


Location: Trout Brook Nature Sanctuary, 169 E Jenks Ave, Saint Paul  


Plant trees, shrubs, and grasses along the brook as we continue the transformation of this neglected former railroad site into a 42-acre nature sanctuary! Once completed, Trout Brook Nature Sanctuary will provide prairie, savanna, maple-basswood forest, wetlands, recreational trails, and stormwater management-all right in the heart of the city!  


Ages: Families are welcome to volunteer


Time Commitment: Four hours 


Contact: Jen Kader at 651.665.9500 ext. 11, Registration is available online



Garlic Mustard Pulls  

Three Rivers Park District


Date/Time: Friday, May 8 or Saturday, May 9, 9am - noon, Silverwood Park; Friday, May 22 or Saturday, May 23, 9am - noon, Hyland Lake Park Reserve


Location: Silverwood Park, 2500 County Rd E, St Anthony; Hyland Lake Park Reserve, 10145 Bush Lake Road, Bloomington  


Help preserve forests and woodlands by harvesting garlic mustard. Once established, this invasive non-native plant prevents the regeneration of native plant species. Take some of your harvest home for cooking; although invasive here, other cultures (mostly European and western Asian) have used it as a cooking herb for centuries. Volunteers help increase the amount of area we can cover to keep this aggressive invader at bay, and volunteers can further assist in early detection and eradication by sharing their new knowledge of what garlic mustard is and the impact it has on our environment. Your help is extremely important to this battle on invasive species!


Ages: Volunteers must be eight or older; and youth ages 8-14 must be accompanied by an adult. A permission form must be submitted for minors before participating these service events.


Time Commitment: Three hours 


Contact: Advance registration is required; online registration preferred 



St Louis Park Arbor Day Planting  

Tree Trust & The City of St Louis Park


Date/Time: Saturday, May 9, 9am - noon


Location: Bass Lake Preserve, 3535 Monterey Drive, St. Louis Park, meet at the tennis courts  


Come lend a hand and give back to the earth. Join with your community to plant a ceremonial tree then break out into teams to plant lots more trees and other native plants in Bass Lake Preserve. The City of St. Louis Park is implementing a huge dredging and vegetative renovation to Bass Lake Preserve and your volunteer time and effort will help us transform this wonderful asset.   


Ages: All ages are welcome to participate; children must be accompanied by an adult.


Time Commitment: Three hours 


Contact: For more information and to sign up, please contact 



Spring Into Service  

Community Thread


Date/Time: Saturday, May 16, 9am - noon


Location: Sites are located throughout the St. Croix Valley; volunteer picnic to follow at Community Thread, 2300 W Orleans Street, Stillwater  


Spring into Service helps local nonprofit organizations that work to strengthen our community every day. By volunteering to beautify and spring clean at these organizations, volunteers help those who support this community. This family-friendly volunteer activity engages 100-300 volunteers annually, assisting with a variety of projects to help nonprofits better serve the St. Croix Valley.  


Ages: The minimum age to volunteer is eight.


Time Commitment: Three hours 


Contact: Paige Stein, 651.439.7434, Register online.






Date/Time: Flexible, whenever is convenient for your family or group


Location: Location will be determined between you and Bridging  


Through the effective reuse of donated items, Bridging improves lives by providing quality furniture and household goods to those transitioning out of homelessness and poverty. Bridging serves over 80 households each week who are given a sense of dignity and stability as they rebuild their lives. Attaching door hangers is a simple yet very effective way to spread the word about Bridging. You simply walk through a predetermined neighborhood and attach door hangers to doors. You and Bridging will together determine where your group would like to canvass and we provide the door hangers and Bridging volunteer nametags. There is no doorbell ringing involved! Bridging provides the door hangers and you provide the volunteers.    


Ages: Everyone can participate    


Time Commitment: No set time commitment, it can be a few hours or spread out over a few days...whatever works best for you.


Contact: Bridging-Roseville, Wendy, 651.319.9295 or;
Bridging-Bloomington, Dave Rannow, 952.460.3750 or 



Minnehaha Creek Clean-Up   

City of St Louis Park


Date/Time: Saturday, May 2, 9-11am. (Rain Date is Sunday, May 3)


Location: Izaak Walton Creekside Park, 7341 Oxford St, St. Louis Park  


Join the Parks and Recreation Advisory Commission of St. Louis Park for the 9th Annual Minnehaha Creek Clean-Up. Gloves, waders, clean-up tools, and disposal bags will be provided. Dress for the weather and wear comfortable work clothes. Just show up - no registration is needed.  


Ages: Families with children ages five and up, with adult supervision


Time Commitment: Two hours 


Contact: Jim Vaughn, 952.924.2699 or with questions. If the weather is questionable, call the weather line at 952.924.2567 



Family Summer Camp Volunteers  

True Friends - Camp Courage  


Date/Time: June-August


Location: Camp Courage in Maple Lake, MN or Camp Courage North in Lake George, MN   


Families of up to seven members (two of whom are adults 18 years+) assist during camp depending on their skill set (including, but not limited to: cabin support, kitchen support, housekeeping, or program design). Volunteers directly support True Friends' mission: "Provide life-changing experiences that enhance independence and self-esteem for children and adults with disabilities."  


Ages: Families with children five and older are welcome to volunteer - adults must provide supervision for those under 18 years.


Time Commitment: One week; food and housing provided at no charge; various weeks June-August.


Contact: Conor McGrath or 952.852.0113 



Lunch Making Brigade  

Our Saviour's Housing


Date/Time: Flexible - can be done on your own time!


Location: South Minneapolis, contact for address  


Our Emergency Shelter is home to 40 adults every night of the year, but we are closed during the day. You can help make sure that residents stay fed and healthy even while they're away from the shelter by making simple meat and cheese sandwiches. Individuals and groups can make as many lunches as they are able; up to 200. You can either make full lunches including snacks in a brown lunch bag, just the sandwiches, or just the snacks. Lunches can be made at your own location and dropped off at our shelter, or we can schedule a time for you to make lunches at our shelter.   


Ages: All ages are welcome to participate


Time Commitment: Varies


Contact: Rachel Kennedy - Volunteer Coordinator,, 612.872.4193 x2



Host families for international students  

Academic Year in America


Date/Time: Ongoing


Location: Your home and community  


The local chapter of Academic Year in America is seeking families to host incoming international exchange students. This is a fantastic opportunity for families who wish to enrich their families' culture, to build memories and friendships, and to showcase their culture and values.   


Ages: Families of all shapes and sizes are welcome.


Time Commitment: Families can choose to host a student for six weeks, for a semester, or for an academic year.


Contact: Emily at






Date/Time: Two Thursdays every month from 5:45 until 8 pm


Location: 2nd and 4th Thursday in Roseville  


Ongoing childcare attendants are needed in Roseville two to four Thursday evenings each month. Volunteers will create and lead activities as well as provide supervision to children ages infant to eight years old while mothers attend career advancement workshop. This is a great opportunity for parent/child volunteer teams! We are looking for volunteers to make at least a six-month commitment; longer commitments are welcome.


Ages: Parent/Child Teams with children over 12 years old; Sibling Teams if both siblings are over 14 years old


Time Commitment: Six months, some flexibility permitted


Contact: Samantha Sleeman at



Caring Cooks  



Date/Time: Two Thursdays every month. The meal must be ready to serve at 6pm.


Location: 1st and 3rd Thursday in North Minneapolis  


Meal service volunteers are needed at our evening client workshops. This is a great opportunity for small groups or families! We are looking for volunteers to provide a meal for about 15 workshop participants. Volunteers can either: 

  • Prepare and serve meal that has already been planned;
  • Plan, purchase ingredients, and prepare meal for one our programs that host evening workshops and activities. There is a kitchen available on-site for volunteer use;
  • Bring store/restaurant bought food and serve participants;
  • Prepare a freezable meal ahead of time and drop it off for one of our programs to utilize.

Ages: This is a great family opportunity. Children must be able to help parents in the kitchen and follow directions.


Time Commitment: Meal must be ready to serve at 6pm, so please plan accordingly. The average time commitment is one and one-half to two and one-half hours. This meal service opportunity can be one-time or ongoing.


Contact: Samantha Sleeman at



Grow The Garden  

Senior Community Services HOME Program


Date/Time: Flexible


Location: Exact location TBD in suburban Hennepin County or Minneapolis, depends where the senior lives.  


Enjoy the great outdoors and get your hands dirty! You and your family can help seniors maintain their gardens throughout the growing season.  


Ages: Family teams welcome, youth must be age seven or older and supervised by an adult.  


Time Commitment: Assist one-time or adopt a garden for the season.


Contact: Jeanne, Volunteer Coordinator, or 952.767.7894. We reserve dates on a first come, first served basis and request at least a two-week advance notice due to scheduling logistics.



Help Feed Hungry Kids   

Neighbors, Inc.


Date/Time: Various weekday breakfast and lunchtime shifts in June, July or August


Location: Henry Sibley High School, 1897 Delaware Ave, West St Paul; Garlough Environmental Magnet School, 1740 Charlton Street, West St Paul; Kaposia Education Center, 1225 1st Avenue S, South St Paul; Moreland Elementary School, 217 W. Moreland Ave W. St. Paul     


Good nutrition is necessary for students to perform better in school. Volunteers are needed to serve breakfasts and lunches to students attending summer school. Volunteers serve meals to students and encourage students to take milk and other required food items; minimal food preparation is sometimes required with supervision from school kitchen staff. This is a perfect service opportunity for churches, workplaces, community groups, families, and individuals looking for fun opportunities to help their community.    


Ages: Minimum age is 5. Volunteers ages 5-13 years old need to be accompanied by an adult.  


Time Commitment: Between two to three hours per shift


Contact: Jenna at 651.306.2143 or To register online: go to, click on the One-Time Volunteer Activity Schedule link and select your shift.  


Foster a Pet  

Your Local Animal Shelter Organizations


Date/Time: Ongoing



Fostering a pet is one of the most rewarding experiences your family can have. When you foster a pet you: 

  • Free up a spot so the shelter or rescue can take in another pet.
  • Give your foster pet the time he or she needs to be ready for adoption.
  • Help the shelter or rescue learn more about the pet so he or she can end up in the best home possible.
  • Socialize the pet to a home environment.

Visit the DGT™ project page for reflection ideas, book suggestions, and ways to take this project further.   


Ages: Fostering a pet is a great family opportunity. Your local animal shelter organizations will let you know if they have any specific age requirements.


Time Commitment: Varies


Contact: Check Petfinder's list of Animal Welfare groups by state to find a rescue group or shelter near you.




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This list was compiled by Doing Good Together™ (
 When calling to volunteer for any of the opportunities listed above, please let the coordinator know you found it through this listing. You are encouraged to ask any questions you may have of the sponsoring organization before committing to a project.
Disclaimer: This list is provided as a service to families. Inclusion of organizations in this listing does not imply affiliation, endorsement or quality assurance on the part of Doing Good Together.™ Doing Good Together™ bears no responsibility whatsoever for the activities and actions of the listed organizations. 

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