August 2017 - Silicon Valley Family Volunteer Opportunities

August 2017 Silicon Valley Family Volunteer Opportunities

August 2017  - Silicon Valley 
Hellyer Park Weeding Party
Keep Coyote Creek Beautiful
Date/Time: Weekly, every Saturday through August (5th, 12th, 19th and 26th) from 9 -11am
Location: Hellyer Park Visitor Center, 985 Hellyer Avenue, San Jose

Come to the Helleyer Park Weeding Party to clean up your park while meeting new people. We have all the tools; we just need you. These events are a great way to meet new people and put some sweat equity back into your park. And you get some time outdoors, which is good for your health! We'll be working in three zones: Velodrome, Dog Park, and east side of Cottonwood Lake. No special skills are required. Please wear long pants, a long sleeve shirt, and bring a water bottle and sunscreen. Work gloves and necessary tools are provided. Refreshments will be available following the event. This event is sponsored by Santa Clara County Parks and Keep Coyote Creek Beautiful.
Ages: All ages are welcome. Volunteers ages 15 and under must be accompanied by a parent or guardian throughout the event. Volunteers age 16-17 may participate without parent/guardian supervision but only if they present a completed volunteer application, including a parent or guardian's signature. Application forms are available at the event, but the parent or guardian must be present to sign.
Time Commitment: Two hours
Contact: Deb Kramer,, 408.372.7053. Registration is available online.
Delivery Volunteers for Families with Critically Ill Children
There With Care of the Bay Area
Date/Time: Times and dates are flexible for volunteering. Upcoming orientations are Monday, August 14 from 6 to 7:30pm and Tuesday, August 25 from 10 to 11:30am
Location: There With Care of the Bay Area, 3475 Edison Way, Suite H, Menlo Park

There With Care provides a wide range of thoughtful and fundamental services to children and families during the critical phases of a medical crisis. They serve families referred by medical agencies by building a network of services and people who ease the burden of life's day-to-day obligations with compassion and care. You can help care for the families of critically ill children in your community by delivering groceries and other needed items to them. Volunteers must attend a one-time mandatory 90-minute training before heading out with grocery and supply deliveries from our pantry in Menlo Park to families on the Peninsula, Lucile Packard Children's Hospital, and Ronald McDonald House. Please bring your children of all ages to help you volunteer!
Ages: Primary volunteer must be at least 18 years old with a drivers license, background check and orientation for drivers meeting with families, but please bring your children!
Time Commitment: Flexible, orientation required. Register for orientation online.
Contact: Jennifer Thurlow, 650.268.8557,
Restore Local Ecosystems
Grassroots Ecology

Date/Time: Various ongoing events around the South Bay

Location: Multiple locations in Palo Alto, Cupertino and Los Altos including Foothills Park, Pearson-Arastadero Preserve, Redwood Grove Nature Preserve, McClellan Ranch and San Franscisquito Creek.

Grassroots Ecology leverages the power of community volunteers to create healthy ecosystems across Silicon Valley, from the foothills to San Francisco Bay. We restore native plants to open spaces and neighborhoods, steward creeks and watersheds, and provide nature education in the classroom and in the field. Monthly volunteer projects involve planting native plants, removing invasive plants and sheet mulching. This is a also a great opportunity to do a bit of wildlife watching and learn about our local native habitat. Please bring a reusable water bottle and dress for outdoor work (sturdy shoes and long pants recommended). We provide gloves and tools.

Ages: Volunteers of all ages are welcome; minors under 18 require a parent to approve the online waiver when registering for this event, and children under 12 require an accompanying adult unless prior approval is obtained from the workday supervisor.

Time Commitment: Two and one-half hours

Contact: Each event has a different supervisor. Please contact the supervisor listed on the event page. Registration is available online. If you cannot attend, please notify the Grassroots Coordinator listed on the event page so that your place will be available for another volunteer. If you have additional questions about Grassroots Ecology you can contact Jeremy Merckling,, 650.419.9880.
Relay For Life Menlo Park 2017
American Cancer Society
Date/Time: Saturday and Sunday, August 12-13, 11am - 9am
Location: Burgess Park, 701 Laurel Street, Menlo Park

Family volunteer opportunities at local Relay for Life events can include, but are not limited to: Luminaria set up, trash pick up, track signs & general signage, set up/tear down, registration, and staffing the Fight Back Tent. Families are also welcome and encouraged to sign up to participate in the Relay For Life. If you are interested in walking as a family or with a team, check out your local Relay For Life event sign up page.

Ages: There are volunteer opportunities for all ages
Time Commitment: Varies depending on event, but Relay For Life is flexible for you!
Contact: Alicia Ruiz,, 408.688.0114
Backpacks for Success Festival: Family and Children
Date/Time: Saturday, August 12, 10am - 1pm and 12:30 - 3:30pm
Location: 1297 North 13th St., San Jose

Cityteam San Jose invites you to volunteer for our Backpack Distribution Festival to be held on Saturday, August 12th for local children in need. We need hardworking and compassionate volunteers who strongly believe that education is a great step towards a brighter future. We anticipate distributing 500 backpacks at this event. Volunteers are invited to help with game booths, food distribution, set up, break down, prize store, cleaning, and security.
Ages: Volunteers must be at least nine years old. An adult must accompany children under 14.
Time Commitment: Three hours
Contact: Erin Campos,, 408.232.5620. Please register for this event on the Cityteam Volunteer Projects Calendar. Registering a minor is the same as registering an adult. To register a minor, you will need to create an account for them in addition and agree to the volunteer terms on their behalf.  
Sunday Friends' Programs for Very Low-Income Families
Sunday Friends
Date/Time: Sundays between 10:30am and 5:30pm. Also, there are some after-school shifts on weekdays at our special store.
  • Santee Elementary, 1313 Audubon Dr., San Jose, on the 2nd Sunday of every month
  • Meadows Elementary, 1250 Taper Ln., San Jose, on the 3rd Sunday of every month
  • Lowell Elementary, 625 South 7th St., San Jose, on the 4th Sunday of every month. In November and December this will be on the 1st Sunday of the month 
  • Sunday Friends special store, 730 Story Rd. Ste. 3, San Jose, open weekdays from 4 - 7pm
Volunteers are needed to work directly with children, and maybe also their parents, to facilitate service and learning projects, including: craft gift making, healthy food preparation, letter and essay writing, hands-on science projects, math and other learning games, computer education, English as a Second Language classes, reading and book report writing, exercise class, parents' classes and more. Because children and parents earn tickets for their participation, redeemable for basic necessities in our special stores, you might also assist with the banking, store setup or shopping.

Ages: Families, teens, adults, and groups are all welcome. An adult must accompany children under age 14.
Time Commitment: No predetermined number of hours, but if you sign up to come to a program, you are expected to come.
Contact: Volunteers should begin by completing the New Volunteer Registration process. Please register to volunteer a couple of weeks in advance of the date. Contact Lilly,, or, with questions or call 408.217.9587
Veggielution's Youth Garden
Date/Time: Every Saturday, 10am - 12:30pm
Location: 647 S. King Road, San Jose; located in the back of Emma Prusch Park

Come join the Veggielution team for weekly Youth Garden Activities. Every Saturday your whole family can enjoy gardening, crafting, and learning together in the Youth Garden. Participating in our Youth Garden activities is a great way to spend time with your children while exploring the garden, learning about the exciting processes of the natural world - not to mention making new friends. This is a unique opportunity to get your hands dirty and become better stewards of the environment as a family. Veggielution volunteer activities encourage exploration and play-based learning for the whole family.
Ages: Families with children ages three and up are welcome to volunteer. Families visiting the Youth Garden should have a 2:1 child to adult ratio for ages 3-6, and a 3:1 ratio for ages 7 and up.
Time Commitment: Two and one-half hours
Contact: Emily Martinez,, 408.753.6705. Registration is available online.

Summertime Nursery Volunteers
Our City Forest
Date/Time: Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays, 9am - noon, through Saturday September 2
Location: 1000 Spring St. San Jose

Come join us at our Community Nursery! The nursery will happily accept volunteers for all of August. Tasks will vary depending on project demands, but there is always plenty to do. Volunteers must wear pants and closed toed shoes that are sturdy. They must also bring a reusable water bottle and a hat or sunblock.

Ages: All ages are welcome, children under 12 must have a Parent or Guardian present. All minors must provide a parental consent form.
Time Commitment: Three hours
Contact:, 408.998.7337 x119 (the best way to contact Our City Forest is via email or to visit the nursery) To sign up to volunteer please email

Help the TCV Foodbank
Tri-City Volunteers
Date/Time: Monday through Friday, 8am - 4pm
Location:  37350 Joseph St., Fremont

Volunteers are essential to Tri-City Volunteers food bank's daily grocery cart preparation and distribution. We need approximately 40 warehouse volunteers a day to ensure that as many as 350 client families per day receive adequate nutrition. Volunteers also help us sort and hang donated clothing and attractively merchandise our boutique thrift store, which provides very low-cost items of struggling families: babies clothes are 10 for $1.00, children's clothes are 5 for $1.00 and the majority of adult clothing is marked at $0.50 or $2.00. Community volunteers are the heart of our agency. Not only do volunteers work directly with low and very-low income families, they bring to life our vision of a community united together to ensure that every child and adult in our area is not just free from hunger, but can access pathways to financial stability and self-sufficiency. While volunteers assist families in Tri-City Volunteers food bank and thrift store, they are also mentoring and deeply connecting with others. That is the real strength of our work.

Ages: Families with children ten and older are welcome to volunteer.
Time Commitment: Minimum of two hours
Contact: To learn more and to sign up for volunteer orientation, contact Gloria Lara,, 510.793.4583.
Stewardship Day - Fremont
Don Edwards National Wildlife Refuge
Date/Time: Saturday August 26, 9:30am - noon
Location: 2 Marshlands Road, Fremont. Meet in the parking lot at the Visitor Center. Driving an additional 2.5 miles may be required since the project may be at a different location.
If you are interested in improving the refuge for visitors and for wildlife alike, join us at the Visitor Center for a community service project. We will do either a trash cleanup or a planting/weeding project. Dress appropriately for the task and for the weather. We will have gloves to lend and will provide the tools. Please bring your own water bottle.

Ages: All ages are welcome; an adult must accompany children under the age of 16.
Time Commitment: Two and one-half hours
Contact: Paul Mueller,, 510.792.0222 ext. 361. 

Family Volunteering Opportunities with SCS
Sunnyvale Community Services (SCS)
Date/Time: Flexible
Location: 725 Kifer Rd., Sunnyvale

Sunnyvale Community Services works to prevent homelessness and hunger by providing emergency services to our neighbors in need. Exposing children to the concept of giving back is very important to many families and to SCS.  We encourage and appreciate the following family activities, which are very helpful to SCS and can stimulate great conversation and discovery for you and your children. See our wish list page for specific donation needs. Feel free to bring your children with you when you donate items to SCS.
  • Monthly family shopping trips to purchase items specifically for donation to SCS.
  • Establish a relationship with a local retailer to pick up damaged food, cleaning products, toilet paper, or other staple household items on a regular basis.
  • Collect hotel/motel toiletries while traveling or on vacation. We distribute hygiene kits of toothpaste, shampoo, soaps, lotions, and disposable razors to low-income and homeless clients.
  • Buy new books for low-income children. Feel free to wrap them and include a personal note (first names only please).
  • Buy new socks and or gloves for the homeless. Feel free to wrap them and include a personal note (first names only please).
  • Purchase and assemble plastic utensil packets - 2 forks, 2 knives, 2 spoons, and 2 paper napkins, all sealed together in a sandwich size plastic ziploc bag.
  • Make scarves in the wintertime by cutting a yard or two of fleece into 6 inch wide strips, then cut fringe at the ends.
  • Arrange with us to pick up a bale or two of brown bags to be doubled at home - we use 7000 double bags every month so need a constant supply!
Ages: Everyone is welcome to participate
Time Commitment: Varies
Contact: Carolyn Alexander,, 408.738.4298
Creative for A Cause
Doing Good Together
Date/Time: Flexible
Location: Your home or community

Visit the Doing Good Together Creative for a Cause Project Page for a variety of ideas for nurturing creativity and compassion in your children. When we can understand how someone else is feeling and how they might experience life differently, we can search for innovative ways to help. Creativity in its many forms will inspire children to approach problem solving in new ways, which will help them navigate the many roads to kindness in our complex society. Your family can choose a project or projects that inspire you and apply your creativity to an act of kindness

Ages: Everyone can participate
Time Commitment: Varies, depending on project

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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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