Getting Started in Service

Getting Started in Service

Deciding to serve is an act that we celebrate, and, an easy choice. Deciding where to serve though, can be more difficult. If you’d like to get some guidance on some great places to help out, feel free to call my office at 718-499-1090, or email me at Lander [at] Council [dot] NYC [dot] gov.

Additionally, here are some organizations doing great work across New York City who would be happy to have extra volunteers:

  • American Red Cross in Greater New York, New York City's branch of the Red Cross, providing humanitarian aid on a local level.
  • Food Bank for New York City, which works to end hunger and increase access to affordable, nutritious food for low-income New Yorkers.
  • New York Cares, an organization that organizes and coordinates volunteers on projects throughout New York City.
  • NYC Service, Mayor Bloomberg's community service initiative, organizing volunteers on 38 projects that aim to tackle the city's most pressing problems.
  • Park Slope Civic Council organizes many events for the Park Slope community and visitors, including the Civic Sweep and Halloween Parade. Sign up to volunteer here and visit the Council's events calendar here.
  • Heights and Hills Community Council is looking for volunteers to meet with senior citizens in Brooklyn.
  • Park Slope Senior Center (718-832-3726), a day center for Park Slope's senior citizens, is looking for volunteers to help teach classes and serve lunch.
  • Prospect Park Volunteer Corps offers many exciting ways to help in one of the world's most beautiful parks.
  • New York Memory Center is a community based agency who provide services to older adults who want to stay active within their community.
  • Old First Respite Shelter has opportunities available for overnight volunteers and for volunteers to prepare meals.
  • Added Value provides volunteer opportunities to help in making a movement to make change through sustainable development in Red Hook.
  • Masbia Soup Kitchen is dedicated to providing hot, nourishing Kosher meals to anyone in need.
  • Carroll Gardens Association is a not-for-profit organization which develops affordable housing as well as providing youth services, tenant services, benefits assistance etc.
  • Brooklyn Food Coalition holds events and groups to empower community connections to drive healthy food changes in Brooklyn.
  • CHIPS is dedicated to helping the poor and the homeless as well as those in emergency situations by providing meals and temporary shelter.
  • Free Arts NYC is a non-profit organization dedicated to providing under-served children and families with a unique combination of educational arts and mentoring programs.
  • GallopNYC works with people in need of physical or mental support by providing therapeutic horseback riding.  They need volunteers to help lead horses and work with disabled riders.
  • Cobble Hill Association is dedicated to making the neighborhood of Cobble Hill a better place to live.
  • Friend of Carroll Park is a group of neighborhood residents committed to maintaining and improving Carroll Park.
  • The Friends of Douglass/Greene Park is a non-profit organization dedicated to working with the surrounding communities and organizations to revitalize Thomas Greene Park and to support ecological, recreational, educational and economic uses that increase the park’s attractiveness as a destination while respecting the character of the surrounding areas.
  • Old Stone House and Friends of Washington Park support the gardens and recreation spaces surrounding the house and are seeking volunteers interested in gardening and community based programming.
  • Friends of Greenwood Playground is a group of community members who organize and sponsor cross-cultural programming for children and adults in Windsor Terrace and Kensington. 
  • Friends of Brizzi Playground is a group of neighborhood residents committed to maintaining and improving Brizzi Playground.
  • friendsofdomepark [at] gmail [dot] com (Friends of Dome Playground) is a group of community members dedicated to caring for the recently renovated Dome Playground. 
  • Selfhelp Community Services, Inc., (718-633-1300), an organization that assists older adults, is looking for friendly visitors for Holocaust survivors in Brooklyn.

    Project Reach Youth needs tutors for pre-GED, GED, math, grammar, and writing courses - a great opportunity to help out individual children one at a time!

    Brooklyn Green Teens is a wonderful opportunity for teenagers to help protect, promote and learn about the environment.

    The Red Hook Boaters is a volunteer-only group dedicated to providing free kayaking to the Red Hook community in Brooklyn and helping them maintain the beauty of the shoreline at Valentino pier..

  • Big Apple Greeters is an organization dedicated to exposing unique and interesting neighborhoods to people visiting New York City from around the world. They are looking for people who want to share their love and knowledge of their communities with groups of one to six visitors. Foreign language skills are a plus! 


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