Volunteer Opportunities

While HYPE offers a host of volunteer opportunities through our Community Involvement Committee and annual events, there are also many other opportunities to get involved in the community.

Making a House a Home

Journey Home's Making a House a Home program connects those who have recently experienced homelessness with furniture once they have moved into housing. Our volunteers help to deliver the furniture and household items to clients in need. We meet at our warehouse, load up a box truck, and caravan out to 2-3 client’s homes. Our goal is to make sure that everyone has a table to eat at, a chair to sit in, and a bed to sleep on!

They need your help! Volunteer times vary on both Saturday and Sundays. Contact Alison Scharr to sign up!

HYPE Cup teams can earn 1 extra point for volunteering. Eligible dates are Saturday and Sundays 10:00-1:00pm starting 9/1/18 through 12/31/2018. To volunteer contact Alison Scharr and be sure to tell her you are with HYPE Cup.

Arts and Crafts Night

The Chrysalis Center is in need of volunteers to help with their Arts and Craft nights. They are in need of two to three volunteers to host Arts and Crafts Night at their supportive housing in Hartford. They ask the volunteers to plan a craft, bring supplies and come for one hour to host the event. These are families in need and they are trying to create a sense of community and share how easy it can be to interact as a family. The dates they need help from 5:00-6:00pm are:

Tuesday, December 4th
Tuesday, January 8th
Tuesday, February 5th
Tuesday, March 5th
Tuesday, April 2nd

Contact Ellyn Laramie to volunteer!

HYPE Cup teams can earn 1 extra point for volunteering. To volunteer contact Ellyn Laramie and be sure to tell her you are with HYPE Cup.

Emerging Leaders Society Beyond the Bell

OE United Way Emerging Leaders SocietyThe Emerging Leaders Society (ELS) is running Beyond the Bell again this year. This is an after school experience for students participating in programs at Alfred E. Burr Community School in Hartford. ELS members design and facilitate activities related to Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM), programming in partnership with Microsoft. STEM activities will include two components, a plugged and unplugged activity. “Unplugged” activities do not involve the use of computers or other electronics.  

A team of ELS members meet to plan the unplugged activities in advance of the scheduled volunteer dates. To participate in planning meetings, please contact Rebekah Castagno.

12/13/2018 (F) @ Burr, 4:45pm-6:00pm
1/10/2019 (F) @ Burr, 4:45pm-6:00pm
2/8/2019 (F) @ Burr, 4:45pm-6:00pm
3/8/2019 (F) @ Burr, 4:45pm-5:45pm
5/10/2019 (F) @ Burr, 4:45pm-6:00pm

HYPE Cup teams can earn 1 extra point for volunteering. To volunteer contact Rebekah

Holiday Light Fantasia

Holiday Light Fantasia is a Hartford tradition and the largest event Channel 3 Kids Camp presents each year, bringing in thousands of visitors and important financial support. Channel 3 Kids Camp staff are joined by sponsors, supporters and volunteers like you to help staff the show itself from November 23rd through January 1st, 2019.

Volunteers will help with ticketing and show operations which includes assisting staff, sponsors, and the Kids Camp Board of Directors at the gate during the show. Approximately 6 – 10 people are needed per night to successfully operate the show.  Activities include: ticketing, directing traffic, and handing out programs. The event is open 7 days a week.

HYPE Cup teams can earn 1 extra point for volunteering. To volunteer contact Jana Tierney and be sure to tell her you are with HYPE Cup.

Winterfest Data Collection

Winterfest is seeking assistance in collecting data on people who come to skate in Bushnell Park. They  are seeking volunteers that will ask skaters their zip code and age (within a range). This data is needed for grants that we receive to operate the rink.

Shifts are 2.5 hours. Volunteers needed on the following dates:

Sunday, December 9,  10:45 a.m. - 1:00 p.m.
Sunday, December 9, 12:45 p.m. - 3:15 p.m.
Sunday, December 9, 3:00 p.m. - 5:30 p.m.
Sunday, December 9, 5:15 p.m. - 8:00 p.m.

HYPE Cup teams can earn 1 extra point for volunteering for each shift. To volunteer email Jackie Mandyck and tell her you are with HYPE Cup.

Santa's Workshop at Winterfest

Winterfest is seeking assistance in staffing Santa's Workshop. Dates and times are below:

Saturday, December 1, 2018, 11:45 a.m. - 3:30 p.m.
Sunday, December 2, 2018, 11:45 a.m. - 3:30 p.m.

Saturday, December 8, 2018, 11:45 a.m. - 3:30 p.m.
Sunday, December 9, 2018, 11:45 a.m. - 3:30 p.m.

Saturday, December 15, 2018, 11:45 a.m. - 3:30 p.m.
Sunday, December 16, 2018, 11:45 a.m. - 3:30 p.m.

Saturday, December 22, 2018, 11:45 a.m. - 3:30 p.m.
Sunday, December 23, 2018, 11:45 a.m. - 3:30 p.m.

HYPE Cup teams can earn 1 extra point for volunteering for each shift. To volunteer email Jackie Mandyck and tell her you are with HYPE Cup.

Winterfest Santa Letters

Last year Santa and his helpers wrote over 770 letters to children who visited the Carousel and got their pictures taken. Each letter is handwritten and specifically written to answer a child’s question or let them know how wonderful it was to see them. Santa is looking for some helpers to assist in the letter writing task this year. They will be gathering on the below dates from 12:00pm-1:00p.m. at the MetroHartford Alliance at 31 Pratt Street.

You can bring your lunch and help Santa answer all of these amazing letters to children…and some to adults too! Come help us spread the magic of the holiday season.

Monday, December 3rd
Monday, December 10th
Monday, December 17th

Must be able to print
Must be able to address a letter and put a stamp on the envelope Creativity is a bonus

HYPE Cup teams can earn 1 extra point for volunteering for each shift. To volunteer email Jackie Mandyck and tell her you are with HYPE Cup.

Home is Where the Heart is Gala

Journey Home is seeking volunteers to assist with our Annual Home is Where the Heart is Gala on February 8th from 6:00-10:00pm at City Place in Hartford.  Volunteers are needed to assist with check-in and check-out, gloating ticket sales, Spin the Bottle, floating Silent Auction assistance, and auction item running.  Volunteers are typically assigned to rotating, hour-long shifts and every attempt is made to ensure each volunteer has an hour break throughout the night to enjoy themselves.  Volunteers are required to attend a training in advance of the event which will be held Wednesday, February 6th at 5:30pm to be trained on the GiveSmart fundraising platform. Dinner will be provided.

To volunteer, please contact Amanda Gordon by January 18th. Volunteers who wish to assist at the Gala but are unable to attend the required training should reach out to Amanda as soon as possible to arrange for an alternative training

HYPE Cup teams can earn 1 extra point for attending the required training and 1 extra point for volunteering at the Home is Where the Heart is Gala. To volunteer email Amanda Gordon and tell her you are with HYPE Cup.

On Going Volunteer Opportunities

Be a Volunteer Literacy Tutor

Literacy VolunteersAs a volunteer tutor, you can work directly with speakers of other languages in our ESOL program or you can provide Basic Literacy instruction to native English-speakers who have to overcome many challenges in order to learn English. If computers are your thing, become a computer lab assistant and assist students with our educational software and with basic computer skills. If those positions don’t fit your needs, consider lending your talents to special project committees like communications, fundraising, and special events. For more information, visit the Literacy Volunteers of Greater Hartford website.

Become a Hands on Hartford Volunteer

Hands on HartfordEver wonder how you could make a difference in the lives of others? When you sign up to volunteer with Hands on Hartford, you are joining a group of 2,000 individuals who get hands on and make a difference in our community. You can find opportunities that fit your schedule and interests. Have questions? Visit the Hands on Hartford website.

Become a Mandell JCC Ambassador

JCC Mandell of Greater HartfordBecome a "Mandell JCC Ambassador" and share your talents, your experience, and your energy to help make our JCC community a better place. Our JCC Ambassadors benefit from a deeper engagement in the Center while our members and staff benefit from the good will and services that our Ambassadors provide. For more information visit the Mandell JCC website.

Center for Latino Progress

indexAre you available on Saturday mornings (or some weekday evenings)?  Do you want to make a difference in the lives of Hartford teens and young adults? The Center for Latino Progress - CPRF is increasing their weekly homework help and studying group this spring starting in early March. Just 2 hours of your time, either weekly or just once or twice a month can make a big difference. Homework help and studying is done one-on-one at the 95 Park Street Center for Latino Progress offices and classrooms, just one flat mile from Downtown.

Recurring opportunity's are available on Saturdays between 9am-1pm. Each week they send out a mentor request (with time slots and subjects).  Mentors respond by email (or text message) and meet to work one-on-one on Saturday for homework help / studying session with a student on a specific subject, one they are comfortable with. Some of the pairings are recurring, so you may be meeting with the same student each week, but you don’t have to be available every Saturday to sign up. Students range from 8th grade and up to freshman in college. For more information or to sign up, email Tony Cherolis with your contact information and subjects you are most comfortable with.

Coventry Farm

Creative Living Community of Connecticut (CLCC) has an opportunity at the site of their brand new farm in Coventry! They are need of volunteers to organize a time to come out and help them with the clean up. They desperately need help with planting, clearing, small repairs and the myriad of other tasks that revolve around farm life! The farm will be used for vocational training and housing for individuals with disabilities. Volunteering is by appointment only. If you are able to help out contact Alex Koenigsberg.

HYPE Cup teams can earn 1 extra point for their team for every 4 hour shift volunteered (up to 5 points). To volunteer contact Kate Arildsen, and be sure to tell her you are with HYPE Cup.

Creative Living

Go help Creative Living Community of Connecticut (CLCC) by working alongside people with developmental disabilities in their greenhouse program! Tasks may include seeding micro greens, harvesting the greens, and packaging the product for delivery to restaurants and farmer’s markets.

Hours are weekdays from 9am to 1pm and the greenhouse is located at the Tolland Agricultural Center at 30 Hyde Avenue in Vernon, CT. For more information or to volunteer, contact Alexis Vatteroni. 

HYPE Cup teams can earn 1 extra point for their team for every 4 hour shift volunteered (up to 5 points). To volunteer contact Kate Arildsen, and be sure to tell her you are with HYPE Cup.


Freshplace is not a typical food pantry. It offers those in need fresh fruit, vegetables, dairy and meats in addition to staple items. It allows patrons to choose their own foods to meet their individual health, cultural and family needs. Freshplace also provides case management and referral services to help client’s access services that can provide assistance to help them become more self-sufficient. Freshplace is a resource, revitalizing Hartford’s Upper Albany and Asylum Hill neighborhoods and creating a center for community involvement. Volunteer opportunities include:

  • Local grocery store pick-up’s: Tuesday, Wednesday and Friday morning’s all in West Hartford
  • Volunteer in Freshplace: Tuesday and Thursday 10-2pm and Saturday from 9-1 pm
  • Help unload and re-package our weekly food donation from Foodshare on Friday’s from 9-1pm.  This is a great opportunity to volunteer as a team, if this is something you are interested in.
  • Freshplace’s Saturday hours also are a great opportunity to come as a small group, call in advance to reserve.

Freshplace is open Tuesday and Thursdays 10:00am-2:00pm, Fridays 9:00am-11:00am, and Saturdays 9:00am-1:00pm,. Volunteers can staff half of a shift, which is a two-hour block, or a whole shift, which is a four-hour block. You can volunteer as part of an ongoing commitment or as a one-time volunteer. For more information and to sign-up as a volunteer, please contact Jonathan Mitchell at Chrysalis Center by emailing Jmitchell@chrysaliscenterct.org.

HYPE Cup teams can earn 1 extra point for their team for every 4 hour shift volunteered (up to 5 points). To volunteer contact Ellyn Laramie, and be sure to tell her you are with HYPE Cup.

Girl Scouts of Connecticut

Girl ScoutsGirl Scouts of Connecticut is the largest girl-led organization serving girls and women in Connecticut. Since the formation of the first Connecticut troop in 1912, Girl Scouts has been committed to building girls of courage, confidence, and character who make the world a better place. With 32,000 girls and 15,000 adult volunteers, the chances to have fun, explore new things, and make new friends never ceases. They want to ensure every girl, who desires to become a Girl Scout, is given an opportunity to do so. They have girls all throughout the state looking forward to joining a troop, but can’t because they don’t have enough volunteers.

They are actively seeking new volunteer leaders to help support these girls during their Girl Scouting experience. Were you a Girl Scout growing up and ready to volunteer as a troop leader now? Do you want to fulfill your own longing to become a Girl Scout? Reach out to to become a volunteer leader! Email for more information.

Greater Hartford Arts Council - Business Volunteers for the Arts

The Business Volunteers for the Arts program aims to pair business professionals with nonprofits in the region to work together on projects, build capacity in the organizations, and provide professionals with a great opportunity to give back with real impact. Each Business Volunteers for the Arts project takes about 3 to 6 months and they range in needs. The project they are currently seeking a volunteer for is a marketing project for Southington Community Cultural Arts.

A volunteer consultant will guide Southington Community Cultural Arts through the process of writing a strategic marketing plan, which defines communications goals, objects, target markets, creative strategies, and the most effective communication vehicles for an organization. Marketing includes all written, spoken, and electronic communication with audiences, and it broadens the reach, impact, and support base for the organization. The volunteer can work with the organization to provide expert inquiry that probes and challenges current organizational assumptions. For more information, contact Community Programs Manager Amanda Roy.

Riverfront Recapture

The success of Riverfront Recapture depends on having dedicated volunteers who fill a number of critical roles, from maintaining landscapes to assisting at their festivals. With four Riverfront parks in two towns, there's always many ways to lend a hand. Volunteer with Riverfront and spend more time in the Riverfront Parks. To register as a group or an individual, or to learn more about volunteering contact Margie, Volunteer Coordinator, by email or at 860.713.3131 x 305.

Junior Achievement of Southwest New England

Junior Achievement offers opportunities for business and community volunteers to facilitate activities in local schools.   JA programs teach students in kindergarten through high school the basics of financial literacy, workforce readiness and entrepreneurship.  Essentially, JA prepares young people for future success and volunteers become role models and mentors for the students we serve.  Volunteering opportunities are fun and are available in several formats: 1. JA in a Day – spend 4.5 hours in an elementary school; 2. Weekly – visit a classroom, during the school day, once a week for five to seven weeks (45 minutes each visit) or 3. Afterschool – visit a classroom, after school, once a week for five to seven weeks (45 minutes each visit).  Recruitment is ongoing. For more information, visit the Volunteer section of the JA website and/or contact Jeremy Race at jrace@jaconn.org.

Volunteer as a Cultural Navigator

Make a difference in the world of immigrants! Hartford Public Library seeks volunteer Cultural Navigators to guide new arrival immigrants as they make the transition to living in Hartford. Volunteers and new arrivals will meet weekly at the downtown Hartford Public Library over a 12-week period. For further information, please click here or contact Intercultural Liaison Nancy Caddigan at 860-695-6316 or ncaddigan@hplct.org.

Volunteer at Hartford Hospital

There are over 200 volunteer positions available at Hartford Hospital. Most of the opportunities are during the weekday, with some options open at night and on weekends. Volunteers staff the information desk, help with Art for Healing, become patient representatives and more. For more information visit the Hartford Hospital website.

Volunteer for Reach & Rise Mentoring Program

YMCAThe YMCA of Greater Hartford offers a mentor program to the youth at the Wilson-Gray YMCA Youth and Family Center. The Reach & Rise Mentoring program is a national mentoring program of Y-USA that matches children ages 6-17 with a caring adult from the Greater Hartford community. Many of these youth lack positive role models and are in communities challenged by social issues such as poverty, crime, truancy, and sub-standard housing. Through this program, the Y recruits, trains, and connects adult volunteer mentors with youth to provide direct one-on-one mentoring that will create healthy, safe and meaningful relationships. Recruitment is ongoing. For more information, visit the Volunteer section of the YMCA website.