Youth Volunteering: VolunTEENS

Are you a middle or high school student interested in volunteering? Or do you need service hours for school? We make it easy for you to get involved! Check out our VolunTEENS listing of student opportunities, apply online, read our tips for volunteering, log your hours with us, share your volunteer experiences with us and more!

To apply online, click the link above to our new volunteer opportunity system. All opportunities will require that you have a volunteer account created with Volunteer Kalamazoo in order to register (You can do this by clicking here or by logging in if you already have a volunteer account with us.) Search for the opportunity of your choice by keyword (title of the opportunity) or by organization. You can then click “Express Interest” to sign up for that opportunity.
Once you register for the opportunity of your choice, you will receive a confirmation email with contact information for the opportunity coordinator. Expect to be contacted by the organization(s) within 2-3 weeks, sometimes longer depending upon the needs of the organization(s).

What is VolunTEENS?

VolunTEENS is a year-round volunteer program designed for middle and high school students who want to help in their communities by volunteering.

The VolunTEENS Program can:

  • Give you work experience for job applications.
  • Help you stand out on college and scholarship applications.
  • Fulfill school or other service requirements.
  • Allow you to help others.
  • Help you explore future careers while learning new skills.
  • Expose you to new people and experiences.
  • Be Fun!

How Can I Volunteer?
Before you volunteer for a nonprofit organization, there are a few things you need to know about volunteering. First of all, the definition for volunteer is “one who offers himself or herself to provide a service of his or her own free will.”

In other words, a volunteer is someone who signs up with an organization to do a certain project or activity for others in the community, FOR FREE. Although you will not be paid for what you do, most people find that they get many other benefits from volunteering, such as the ones listed above, plus they are helping nonprofit organizations and people, animals or children that need the help.  Click here for some more tips about getting the most out of your volunteer experience.

Getting Started:
Follow the steps below and you’ll be on your way!
1. Read the information here and talk with your parents or guardians about your interest in volunteering.
2. Decide how many hours you can commit to volunteering and talk about how you’ll get to your volunteer job(s). Make sure you have transportation before you sign up for the VolunTEENS Program. Opportunities that are on or near the bus line are marked with bus icon.
3. Opportunities are filled on a first come, first served basis so sign up early to have the best chance of getting the job(s) that you want.
4. Sign-up online at: vk.volunteerkalamazoo.org (see instructions below), OR

Print and mail an application to:
Volunteer Kalamazoo
3901 Emerald Dr, Kalamazoo MI 49001, OR
Fax it to 269.382.8362

Next Steps:
5. To sign up for volunteer opportunities on the website, visit www.volunteerkalamazoo.org and click on “Get Involved.” All opportunities will require that you have a volunteer account created with Volunteer Kalamazoo in order to register. Search for the opportunity of your choice by keyword (title of the opportunity) or by organization. You can then click “Express Interest” to sign up for that opportunity.
6. Once you register for the opportunity of your choice, you will receive a confirmation email with contact information for the opportunity coordinator. Expect to be contacted by the organization(s) within 2-3 weeks, sometimes longer depending upon the needs of the organization(s).
7. Remember that there may be other requirements before beginning your volunteer job, such as an application, interview, background check and/or training.
8. Use the Student Activity Report (or other school form, if applicable) to record and verify your hours and submit them to Volunteer Kalamazoo (available online) OR report your own hours online. We will track them in our database, to be retrieved when needed for college, scholarship or Michigan Student Service Award applications.
9. Enjoy your volunteer experience!
10. Contact the organization hosting the opportunity you signed up for directly if you do not hear from them within 2-3 weeks. You can also contact Volunteer Kalamazoo to follow up on your behalf and/or if you have any questions. We’re here to help!

Ready to get started?
It’s easy to get started with the VolunTEENS program with Volunteer Kalamazoo! Once you have chosen opportunities from the 2014 VolunTEENS listing,  print out the application form and return it to the Volunteer Center at 3901 Emerald Dr. Ste. A, Kalamazoo, MI 49001 or APPLY ONLINE.

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