Maybe you have some extra time on your hands, or maybe you’re just in the giving spirit. All we know is there are more than enough great causes in Austin to give your time to.
Whether you’re an animal lover, an artsy type, a natural mentor, or a healthcare enthusiast — there’s a nearby volunteer opportunity for you. Here are 32 ways to get involved in Austin.
If you want to help your neighbors in need
Central Texas Food Bank | From assembling food packages, cooking meals, and distributing food at mobile pantries, there’s a wide range of ways you can contribute to providing meals for food-insecure Texans. (Pro tip: If you have a green thumb, you can also volunteer to assist in the nonprofit’s garden.)
Meals on Wheels Central Texas | This organization dedicated to serving hearty meals to 5,000+ older adults in the area is in need of meal delivery drivers.
Community First! Village | This 51-acre community provides affordable, permanent housing for people exiting chronic homelessness. Support the community by lending a hand at onsite events such as farmers markets and public movie nights.
The Other Ones Foundation | Work a shift at this nonprofit’s Free Store providing no-cost necessities for people experiencing homelessness, or put together a welcome kit for people moving into transitional shelters.
LifeWorks | This nonprofit provides assistance to youth + young adults experiencing homelessness. Donate to the efforts or host a gift card drive to benefit those in need.
Caritas of Austin | Put together hygiene care kits and snack care kits for people experiencing homelessness in Austin. (You can also serve lunch in the community kitchen, help with deliveries + pick-ups, and help staff members with administrative duties.)
If you’re passionate about supporting local minority groups
Casa Marianella | This nonprofit providing shelter + services for displaced immigrants needs help in the form of driving residents to appointments, delivering food, helping fill out job applications, and sorting donations.
Refugee Services of Texas | Help set up apartments for arriving refugee families, lead cultural orientations, teach English language classes, or provide childcare, job finding + legal services.
Austin Justice Coalition | Help this Black-led organization serve people impacted by gentrification, segregation, and systematic discrimination.
Out Youth | Help organize community events — like the annual Youth Prom or PRIDE Parade — with this organization providing support for LGBTQIA+ youth in Central Texas.
PFLAG Austin | Volunteering at this support group organization for LGBTQIA+ Austinites can be as simple as setting up chairs for a meeting or as intensive as helping with social media management.
If you’re an animal lover
Austin Animal Center | This shelter takes in more than 11,000 animals each year. Help show them some love by connecting dogs + cats with potential adopters, taking pets outside for enrichment, or pitching in at community events. (Pro tip: Have space, but no time? Consider fostering a dog or cat in need of some extra care.)
Austin Pets Alive! | There are several ways to help dogs and cats at this shelter, ranging from direct care of animals to promoting events + pulling shifts at an APA! Thrift location.
Austin Humane Society | Host an adoption events, participate in outreach, or help socialize pets at this 70-year-old shelter.
Austin Wildlife Rescue | This haven for wildlife in need of rescue + rehabilitation is looking for volunteers to clean cages and dishes, wash laundry, and feed animals.
Austin Farm Sanctuary | Volunteer your skills in construction, marketing, or technology at this rehabilitation center, or just pitch in to help complete daily chores. (Pro tip: You can also sponsor a rescued farm animal here.)
The Dog Alliance | This organization provides service animals to veterans, children in need, and older adults. Support their mission by raising a future service dog in your home, participating in clean-ups, or lending your photography skills.
If you want to be there for abuse victims
SAFE Alliance | Gather supplies for children, drop off meals for survivors, or pitch in to deliver meals or work at events.
Hope Alliance | This resource center and emergency shelter for families impacted by violence is in need of volunteers to help with administrative duties, work directly with survivors, or assist in the organization’s strategic goals.
The City of Austin Victim Services Volunteer Program | This Austin program has been providing counseling to Austinites for more than 40 years. After undergoing training, help out by responding to house calls for people in crises.
Center for Child Protection | Either work directly with children and families affected by abuse, or support them indirectly by researching grant opportunities, organizing + collecting donations, and assisting with administrative tasks.
Arrow Child & Family Ministries | Help collect supplies for children, mentor youth, or donate a professional service to this organization dedicated to serving children affected by trauma.
For the handy individuals
Austin Habitat for Humanity | This nonprofit builds + repairs homes almost entirely through volunteer labor. Sign up to work in one of the organization’s ReStore locations or to lend a hand at a construction site.
Austin Free-Net | Help ensure access to technology + the internet in Central Texas by volunteering your tech skills.
Foundation Communities | At this nonprofit dedicated to providing affordable housing, volunteers with special skills in financial wellness and navigating the healthcare system are welcome.
Central Texas Trail Tamers | Ensure sustainable hiking trails around Central Texas by registering to help dig, weed, and clear brush at an upcoming trail rehabilitation project.
Engineers Without Borders - Greater Austin Chapter | If you have an engineering background, help out with projects in Tanzania, Puerto Rico and Austin dedicated to providing clean drinking water, electricity + sanitation services.
For the outdoorsy types
Austin Parks Foundation | Kids and adults alike can pitch in to care for Austin’s parks — last year, volunteers put in more than 20,200 hours of work.
Keep Austin Beautiful | Keep Austin’s parks and green spaces clean and in tip-top shape by helping out at one of this organization’s many cleanups around the city.
The Trail Foundation | Put your gardening skills to the test by helping out with weeding, planting, and ecological restoration in downtown Austin along the Ann and Roy Butler Hike-and-Bike Trail.
Colorado River Alliance | Keep our lakes + shorelines clean while helping educate others about the importance of conserving water and protecting the Colorado River watershed.
Hill Country Conservancy | Sign up via email to be notified about upcoming volunteer opportunities such as trail cleanups.