In this difficult time of distance and separation, few things are as rewarding as finding a meaningful way to give back. As Tennesseans, we have a historic legacy of cooperative volunteerism to uphold; they don’t call us The Volunteer State for nothing! Having had the privilege of meeting and working with thousands of you through the years, we are confident the same bravery and warmth of heart runs through your veins as boldly as it did in those of our ancestors in 1812, 1846, and again during the conflict at the Alamo. 

Beyond the altruistic motivations that usually lead us to help others, volunteering has been empirically proven to give us a boost to both our mental and physical wellbeing! If you’re feeling down, lonely, or even simply bored, we encourage you to reach out to any of the following highly-recommended organizations. While many of them have had to reduce the number of staffers who can be on duty at any one time in order to maintain proper social distancing during the pandemic, they are also reporting fewer volunteers this year than during previous holiday seasons, and are therefore likely to be delighted to hear from you this December and into the new year.

Volunteering Across the Region

Gilda’s Club

Gilda’s Club offers free support to anyone who has been affected by a cancer diagnosis, whether directly, or through a diagnosis of a family member or friend. Their usual schedule includes evidence-based activities such as support groups, workshops, classes, lectures, and community resource recommendations. Although their current offerings have been curtailed due to COVID-19, volunteers are encouraged to reach out and learn more about opportunities to help. 

Harpeth River Conservancy

As one of the most endangered rivers in the United States, the Harpeth River, which cuts through 115 miles of Middle Tennessee, needs our help. During the winter months, volunteers, who are the backbone of the Conservancy, are asked to plant native seedlings, help with cleanup efforts, and represent their place of business through their volunteer efforts. 

Music City Animal Rescue

If you have a soft spot for animals in need, Music City Animal Rescue needs you! Serving abandoned, abused, and neglected animals throughout Middle Tennessee, MCAR needs foster homes for a wide variety of animals, as well as donations of supplies, and financial support. Every animal who is available for foster care through MCAR has been spayed or neutered and assessed by an experienced animal behaviorist. 

Volunteer Opportunities in Nashville

Nashville Rescue Mission

Nashville Rescue Mission is a Christ-centered organization dedicated to providing holistic aid to the most vulnerable members of our community. If you would like to serve the hungry, homeless, and hurting in Nashville according to the tenets of Christianity, volunteers for both the men’s and women’s programs are being accepted now!

Room in the Inn

While Room in the Inn has suspended their onsite volunteering until the CDC indicates it is safe to reopen, volunteers can still join them in their mission to serve the homeless population of Nashville. If you have sewing skills, consider creating face masks to protect our most vulnerable. If you like to cook or bake, meals and desserts are always in high demand! Finally, there is a need for travel size toiletry items and care packages: socks, warm hats and gloves, and non-perishable snacks are excellent items to include. 

Hands On Nashville 

Hands On Nashville connects thousands of volunteers to more than 300 various volunteering opportunities each month. Check the calendar linked above, select the month you’re interested in, and you’ll be presented with an extensive list of options near you. 

Rebuilding Together Nashville

With a mission of helping elderly, disabled, and low-income individuals by gathering volunteers to repair and enhance their housing in order to allow them to remain living safely in their homes, Rebuilding Together encourages interested volunteers to sign up today. When an opportunity arises to get out into the community and get busy rebuilding, RTN will contact you and request your help.

NeedLink Nashville

NeedLink Nashville is the stop-gap between at-risk families, senior citizens, and community members with disabilities and homelessness or living without basic utility services. Currently in its 109th year of operation, NeedLink has a robust system that serves these vulnerable members of society when they are most in need.

Giving Back in Franklin

GraceWorks Ministries Inc.

Since 1995, GraceWorks Ministries has worked to serve the underprivileged members of Franklin’s community through offerings of food, clothing, and financial aid. As a Christ-centered organization, GraceWorks strives to represent the love, care, and generosity of spirit that has made Him a beacon of hope throughout the centuries. They are currently experiencing a severe volunteer gap, so please consider lending them your time.

Mt. Juliet Volunteers Needed

Community Service Officers

If you have an interest in keeping things running smoothly in Mt. Juliet, consider volunteering as a Community Service Officer. These civilian officers are tasked with neighborhood watch, children's safety seat installation guidance, crime prevention, and other roles that foster community wellness.

Thank you for your interest in serving your community through volunteering. We commend your sense of community! We believe that by pulling together, especially as we continue to face the COVID-19 pandemic head-on, we can ensure that our community emerges stronger than ever before.

Did the team at Parks mention your most cherished volunteer opportunity? If we did not, please consider commenting below with its name, a link to a volunteer page, and a short message about why this charity is near and dear to your heart. Thank you for visiting Parks! As 2020 draws to a close, we wish you a safe and happy holiday season and look forward to serving you in the new year. 

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