Volunteering with Kids in Nashville Area


As the saying goes, “It is better to give than to receive.” There are many opportunities to give back for adults, but if you want to get your kids in on the action too, then we have rounded up a list for you!

I believe that it is important to start showing your kids at an early age, just what it means to give back, and what the true definition of community and kindness to others looks like. There is so much negativity in the world, so it is nice to spread goodness to those around us.

Volunteering with Kids in NashvilleVolunteering with Kids in the Nashville Area

Second Harvest Food Bank Family Night (6+)

Family Night takes place every Thursday from 5:30 – 8:00pm. This is mostly packing and re-packing boxes of food donations, but it’s a great opportunity to give back to the community. These food boxes are distributed throughout our area to senior citizens, schools, community agencies, and many others. Make sure to check their website and fill out the waiver for all youth under the age of 18.

Many of Second Harvest’s other programs are open to kids as well—just check the website for individual opportunities.

Salvation Army Red Kettle Bell Ringer (all ages)

This opportunity is a seasonal activity, but a great one to add to your list!
Put those tiny little hands to work doing something they already love to do anyway—ringing bells! You and your family can make some noise at red kettles around Davidson County and surrounding areas throughout the holiday season. The Salvation Army also allows young children to participate in their soup wagon program and to work at their Angel Tree mall booths in November.

Radnor Lake Volunteer Day (10+)

Radnor Lake holds Volunteer Days on one Friday per month (except November and December) from 8am-10am. Projects include exotic plant removal, mulching trails, and planting native vegetation. Registration is required, as this is limited to 40 volunteers. August is full, but there are openings for September, so sign up now to reserve your spot!

Volunteer at the Nashville Zoo (10+)

Family Team volunteers (children age 10 and up, accompanied by one or more guardians) help out at special events in a variety of different areas. ZooTeens (13-17) is a much more involved 9 week summer program that includes a fee for a uniform. If you have an animal-lover at home, this might be perfect.

Hands on Nashville’s Youth Volunteer Corps (13+)

The Hands on Nashville website is a fantastic way to see a bunch of volunteer opportunities at once, and it turns out they’ve got a whole section of their site geared toward the young ones. These events are for kids only—no adults allowed. They also have youth leadership opportunities for high school students. Check out the calendar here.

And if you’re just looking for a one-off event that includes the grown-ups, you can go to the homepage and search using the “Appropriate for:” filter. Volunteer Match is another good one, fyi.

Nashville Humane Society (12+)

The Nashville Humane Society offers a variety of opportunities for you to volunteer in every step of the rescue of their animals. These vary from administrative work, to walking dogs, cuddling kittens or helping out with laundry, and many more!

From the website: Young people (under the age of 13) are not permitted to serve as volunteers on shelter property but can serve through a variety of school and at-home activities that support the animals in our care. For more information, please click here for ways kids under 13 may help fulfill the mission of NHA.

Community Resource Center (13+)

Currently, the CRC needs assistance with building relief and hygiene kits. Volunteers will be sorting materials and compiling kits for distribution. The mission of the CRC is to serve the front lines of poverty, and by assisting in this mission, you will help serve over 8 local counties. Make sure and sign up online, as their are many available dates in August and September.

The United Way (1+ with adult)

The United Way is a great organization located throughout the US, and Nashville has a local chapter. They fight for people in the community, assisting with food, shelter and many other things that help individuals improve their quality of life. There are several opportunities throughout the year, for you to volunteer with your kids. Make sure and search for opportunities here.

Color A Smile (any age)

Looking for something you can do from home? Check our Color A Smile. They are a nonprofit organization that distributes cheerful drawings to senior citizens, our troops overseas, and anyone in need of a smile.  Every month they mail thousands of new drawings to all the people on our mailing list. Kids, teens, and adults can help color and help spread smiles. Check out the instructions online!

Ronald McDonald House Charities (must be accompanied by an adult if under 17)

Volunteers are the heart of the programs run by Ronald McDonald House Charities of Nashville. Caring and cheerful volunteers are often the first voices heard on the telephone and the first smiling faces seen at the door. Whether they are planning and coordinating an evening family activity, supplying and cooking a meal for the families, or committing to a volunteer shift each week or month, our volunteers make our House and Family Room more like home. Please apply online and check out the different opportunities available.

Tennessee Alliance for Kids

You can do this with your kids at home; fill a TAK PAK for a child in need. As children enter foster care, they are usually removed from their home quickly, without time to gather personal belongings. We hope to provide a sense of comfort and belonging through the gift of a TAK PAK. With your help, we can make sure every child — no matter their age — knows they are loved and they matter!

Did we miss a volunteering opportunity? Let us know in the comments!

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Heather Seay
I am a single mom to two beautiful girls, Madison and Ellie. I work from home for a software company based out of Austin, and also work as a Plunder Design jewelry stylist. I live in Murfreesboro, and love suburban life! I am active in my church, World Outreach, and love supporting my alma mater MTSU. You can find me in Nashville any given Sunday in the fall, cheering on my beloved Titans! I am a huge football enthusiast, and love sports in general. In my downtime, I enjoy binging on Gilmore Girls, which I have seen over a hundred times each- it's a lifestyle!


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