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10 Places Kids Can Volunteer in San Diego

Family service can be fun as well as rewarding

By Jennifer Chung Klam

I Love a Clean San Diego

Good For: Kids, Teens, Families

This 50-year-old group combines service with the great outdoors at local beaches, canyons, and parks. I Love a Clean San Diego has a number of programs, from beach adoptions to huge, semiannual beach cleanup days.

San Diego Humane Society

Good For: Kids, Teens

Animal lovers 14 and up can volunteer to help care for and nurture furry friends. Kids of all ages can complete “Pawsitive Service” at home, making toys and enrichment materials for animals in SDHS’s care.

San Diego Food Bank

Good For: Kids, Teens, Families

Help the San Diego Food Bank feed 400,000 hungry San Diegans each month. Volunteers 6 and older can help with a variety of tasks such as inspecting, sorting, and packing food for distribution.

Tecolote Nature Center

Good For: Kids, Teens, Families

Each Saturday, the whole family can work with a park ranger to clean up the canyon. Pull weeds and invasive species, and dispose of trash.

Wild Willow Farm

Good For: Teens, Families

Teens will learn about sustainable farming and the food system as they help with chores. Young children can’t volunteer in the fields, but they can assist with feeding animals and composting.

Feeding America San Diego

Good For: Kids, Teens, Families

Volunteer as a family to help reclaim food pulled from grocery stores, repack bulk foods, sort and label, and help pack produce and staple items for delivery to children in need.

San Diego Children’s Discovery Museum

Good For: Teens

Teens can volunteer to work in almost every area of the museum. They’ll lead demonstrations and school workshops, assist with general operations, or serve as an information ambassador.

Surfrider Foundation

Good For: Kids

The Surfrider Foundation San Diego County Chapter and San Diego Coastkeeper coordinate beach cleanups three times a month. The foundation also needs volunteers for special events, such as surf competitions.

Father Joe’s Villages

Good For: Kids, Teens, Families

San Diego’s largest homeless services provider feeds and cares for nearly 2,000 people, from infants to seniors, every day. Volunteers can help with homework, special events, serving meals, and sorting mail.

Your local assisted living facility

Good For: Kids, Teens, Families

Give your local assisted living facility a call and schedule a time to stop by. Bring a board game, a care package, or a home-baked treat to share with a new friend.

10 Places Kids Can Volunteer in San Diego

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