Service-Learning & Volunteering

Upcoming Volunteer Opportunities

Explore this regularly updated list of upcoming one-time volunteer opportunities! For more information or to sign up, please contact usm.community@maine.eduIf you'd like to request to have your service opportunity posted here, please submit our form!

To learn about long-term volunteer opportunities, visit our Community Partner Directory. 

Upcoming Events  |  Weekly Events  |  Ongoing Events  |  Advocacy & Activism 

*Check out our new Advocacy & Activism opportunities to see a variety of ways to be involved in social justice!*

 

Upcoming Events & New Opportunities: 

Help Teach Computer Science to Kids - Westbrook Middle School is looking for a volunteer intern to help teach computer science. They tend to do work on computer science topics on Wednesdays and would welcome an intern on any of the following time frames each Wednesday: between 7:45-11:30 AM or 12:25-1:25 PM. 

Volunteer with the Walking School Bus - The Walking School Bus is a volunteer run program that offers kids a safe and environmentally friendly option for school transportation. Monday - Friday trained walk leaders pick up students at established "bus stops" along the walking route and accompany them to school. Walk Leaders are required to fill out a volunteer form, go through a background check and attend a 30 minute orientation. The number of mornings a Walk Leader chooses to volunteer is up to them. The walk route generally takes approximately 30 minutes. Interested? Email Naila at wissan@portlandschools.org

The Maine Access Immigrant Network is looking for student interns for a variety of schedule-friendly positions. Are you passionate about building stronger intercultural connections in our community? Are you driven to guide New Mainers in gaining access to healthcare and educational resources? Do you want to help serve as a bridge and cultural broker for multilingual access to health and social services for immigrants, refugees, and asylees in our community? For more information, contact Sarah Lewis at sarah.lewis@main1.org

Looking for Math Tutors - Portland Housing Authority is looking for USM students to volunteer once a week for two hours for math tutoring for neighborhood children in grades K-7 at Front Street in Portland. Contact Mitch Mason at mitchell.mason@maine.edu for more information! 

Wayfinder Schools Looking for Support! Wayfinder Schools, an alternative high school which runs a residential program in New Gloucester and a home-based high school diploma program for teen parents in Camden, is looking for volunteers, tutors, and interns. They have a need for volunteers on Thursdays from 4-5:00 PM for math class, Mondays and Fridays from 8-9:00 AM for general academic support during morning study hall, and Monday and Thursdays from 8-9:00 PM for general academic support during evening study hall. There are also additional opportunities for mentoring, ELL support, and post-secondary planning. Classes begin the week of September 25th. Please contact Morgan at morganc@wayfinderschools.org for more information! 

Backpacks for Local Schools - Deering High School is in need of adult size backpacks for the upcoming school year. Hall Elementary Students also need child size backpacks and school supplies. Any donations would be greatly appreciated. For more information or to donate, please contact Tina Mikkelsen at mikket@portlandschools.org.

Support Immigrant & Refugee Children - The Center for Grieving Children's Intercultural Peer Support Program works to serve parents, children, and teens who have resettled in Portland from countries that experienced war, conflict, and natural disaster. The Intercultural Peer Support Program promotes healing from collective loss and encouraging resilience by increasing children’s coping skills, building positive peer relationships, and supporting the acquisition of English language skills. Volunteers need to be able to commit to 4 hours a week (on a Monday, Wednesday, or Friday afternoon) between October and May. The Center welcomes all interested volunteers and is particularly interested in volunteers who reflect the diversity of the children this program serves. Please contact Beth Quinlan at beth@cgcmaine.org or 207-775-5216 with questions or to sign up for a one hour volunteer orientation. 

Making Strides Against Breast Cancer - Join Making Strides of Greater Portland for the annual walk on Sunday, October 15, 2017. Registration begins at 9:00 AM, and the walk begins at 10:30 AM. It will be hosted at Fort Williams Park in Cape Elizabeth. Click here to learn more! 

 

Weekly Events:  

 Help Manage Cornelia's Closet - Cornelia’s Closet Thrift Store at the Westbrook Community Center (WCC) is full of clothing and decorative home goods and proceeds go toward the WCC’s various programs. Volunteers are needed on Wednesdays for shifts between 9:00 AM - 1:00 PM and will be responsible for greeting customers, sorting donations, working the cash register, keeping the store clean and organized, and creating displays. There is always a member of the management team in the building to contact by radio for questions and help. To learn more about this great opportunity, contact Deb Malley at dmalley@westbrook.me.us

 Volunteer with STRIVE on Friday Nights! STRIVE works with 11-24 year olds with developmental disabilities and seeks volunteers for their STRIVE Socials at their facility in South Portland from 6:00 - 9:00 PM every Friday. Volunteers hang out with STRIVE members and serve as responsible role models. For more information, contact Michelle Greenleaf at mgreenleaf@pslservices.org.

Volunteer with USM's Weekly Wellness Breakfast The Husky Hunger Initiative is a student group dedicated to fighting hunger and food insecurity within the USM Community, as well as to decreasing stigma around food-pantry use. They are looking for help in a variety of ways. Primarily, they need help with their free weekly breakfast held on Wednesday mornings in the Woodbury Campus Centers. They also need help with other events and activities, inventory, picking up donated items, fundraising, publicity, and members to attend their meetings on Monday afternoons to discuss the issue of hunger on campus. Please contact Kaitlyn Novak at kaitlyn.novak@maine.edu for more information. 

Preble Street serves warm, nutritious meals to 250-400 people, three times a day, every day of the year. They need volunteers to help prepare, serve, and clean up for three-hour shifts. For more information, visit their website or email volunteer@preblestreet.org

Saturday Clothing Closet in Gorham - The Orchard Church is looking for help sorting and organizing clothes on Saturday mornings for a free clothing closet that they have open on Wednesdays (6:30-8:00 PM) and Saturdays (9:30 AM - Noon). They are also accepting clothing donations of all sizes. Please contact Barbara Peters at 207-210-7417 if you have a group that is interested in helping with this project.


 

Ongoing Events: 

Be an Academic Mentor for Multicultural Students! Nurture young minds and break the cycle of poverty! Portland Housing Authority (PHA) knows young learners need support and guidance in order to develop their skills and build confidence for educational achievement. However, language barriers prevent many parents from being able to provide homework help at home. PHA study centers connect students with volunteers who donate two hours a week, providing the homework assistance and aspirational support that students need. PHA offers an orientation, frequent check-ins, and the support of two on-site coordinators to make the volunteer experience as smooth as possible. For more information, contact Azia Gilbert at vista.youth@porthouse.org.

Donate Blood at the American Red Cross! Did you know that someone needs a unit of blood every 2-3 seconds in the United States? Search for a blood drive or consider going to the Portland Donation Center at 524 Forest Avenue, Portland (only a half mile from USM!). They are open every day: 7:15 AM - 3:00 PM Friday through Monday, and 11:45 AM - 7:00 PM Tuesday through Thursday. Call 1-800-RED CROSS for more information, or visit their website to make an appointment. 

Be the Match! Someone is diagnosed with blood cancer every three minutes. Join the Be the Match registry, and your tissue type will be included in the search process for every patient in need. Click here to see a flyer with more information or visit their website

Donate to the Husky Hunger Initiative Food Pantry! Did you know that 25-30% of college students experience food insecurity? The Husky Hunger Initiative and The Well offer an on-campus food pantry, located in The Well in the Woodbury Campus Center. Find out more about their specific needs! Please contact Kathryn at kathryn.macdonald@maine.edu for more information!

Mentor New Mainers! The New Mainers Resource Center at Portland Adult Education works with new Mainer professionals seeking to enter the workforce. The Center seeks people to serve as mentors in different capacities with individuals or professional groups for six months at a time. For more information, contact Moey Burchenal at burchm@portlandschools.org.

Tutor Portland Adult Education Students - PAE is looking for community members to help their students achieve their goals and dreams! Tutors commit to six months of supporting students and reinforcing reading and writing. Other volunteers help students prepare for their citizenship test or assist in math. Classroom volunteers are also needed for 7-10 weeks to assist teachers with their lesson plans. Fill out their volunteer application and send it to Moey Burchenal at burchm@portlandschools.org if you are interested in volunteering! 

Give Your Amazon Box New Life! Amazon and Goodwill are working together to make donating easier for you. Using the Give Back Box® platform, a free shipping service, you can donate items you no longer need to Goodwill with ease. It's simple! First, take an empty Amazon (or other) box; fill it with clothing, accessories, and household goods you longer need; print your free shipping label from GiveBackBox.com; let UPS or the Postal Service (USPS) deliver your box of donations to the nearest participating Goodwill! When you donate to Goodwill through Give Back Box, you enable Goodwill to help people find work, strengthen their families, and enrich the local community. 

Help Refugee and Immigrant Children After School! The Intercultural Community Center in Westbrook is looking for volunteers to help support their students through the Power School Afterschool Program, which provides academic enrichment for children (grades 3-8) of immigrant and refugee families in the Greater Portland area. Volunteers help with homework as students gain English language fluency and comprehension skills. Power School is held Monday-Thursday 4:00 PM - 6:00 PM. Please contact Karen Collins at karencollins101@gmail.com or click here for more information. 

Volunteer with the Iris Network! The Iris Network is looking for volunteers to help adults in the Portland area with vision loss participate in recreational activities. Opportunities may include playing cards, BINGO, crafts, assisting with happy hours or holiday parties, driving for community outings, or sharing other talents. Volunteering takes place at Iris Network (189 Park Ave) in Portland as well as in the greater community. Please contact Diane Richard at 207-774-6273 or drichard@theiris.org for more information. 

Backpacks and Supplies for Students - Ocean Avenue Elementary has been designated as the elementary school for all children who are homeless and live in shelters. The school is in need of backpacks and school supplies for these children so they are prepared for school. For more information or to donate, please contact Sylvie Montello at montes@portlandschools.org. Hall Elementary School is also looking for backpages, school supplies, and packaged snacks for their students. Portland Arts & Technology High School (PATHS) is in need of donations for their food and clothing closet, particularly granola bars, fruit snacks, pretzels, and new men's socks and underwear. For more information or to donate, please contact Tina Mikkelsen at mikket@portlandschools.org

Starting Strong Reading Partners - Starting Strong is the early age component of Portland ConnectED, a cradle to career initiative whose goal is that all young people graduate from high school and successfully transition to their next step. With a focus on birth to age eight, Starting Strong’s top priority is to help children reach reading proficiency by the end of third grade. This program engages volunteers to work with first grade students who could benefit from extra reading support. Volunteers meet once or twice a week with their assigned first grader and practice literacy skills for 30 minutes. There are two sessions, October-January and February-May. For more information, please contact Sylvie Montello at montes@portlandschools.org

Lead a Girl Scout Troop! Girl Scout volunteers introduce girls to new experiences that show them they’re capable of more than they ever imagined. They serve as cheerleaders, guides, and mentors that show girls that anything is possible. Working in teams of at least two trained adults, Troop Leaders can choose when, where, and how often their troop meets. Troops can begin at any time of the year, and throughout the state. Visit the Girl Scouts of Maine website to get started! For more information, email info@gsmaine.org or call 1-888-922-4763.

VNA Home Health Hospice Legacy Project - Computer Skills Needed! The Legacy Project will create a free, special one-of- a-kind DVD for VNA Home Health Hospice patients which will be a cherished keepsake for their families. Computer savvy people (with Mac skills) are needed to volunteer in the hospice office at 50 Foden Road in South Portland and help put the material on DVDs. To learn more, contact Beth Simmons at simmonsb@emhs.org or 207-400-8852.

Help Students AIM HIGH! LearningWorks’ AIMS HIGH program places teams of dedicated AmeriCorps members in Southern Maine elementary schools to support student academic achievement and social and emotional learning through tutoring, mentoring, and extended learning, in and out of the classroom. AIMS HIGH members reflect community diversity and are invested in impacting students’ lives by engaging the entire community in the learning process. Members serve seven hours per week or up to full time service. For more information, contact Ethan Schechter at eschechter@learningworks.me or 207-517-3130.

Become a Volunteer Driver with the American Cancer Society - ACS's Road To Recovery program provides transportation to and from treatment for people with cancer who do not have a ride or are unable to drive themselves. For more information, contact Elisa Madore 207-462-6307 or elisa.madore@cancer.org

WinterKids has an immediate need for volunteers to help out with organizational projects at their office in Portland. WinterKids has both one-time and ongoing opportunities available. Contact Jessica at jgreen@winterkids.org for more information. 

Painting For A Purpose brings people together to create hand-painted whimsical art, hosts an annual auction to sell the art, and uses the proceeds to fund youth-led service learning grants for students in the Portland Public Schools. They celebrate the power of art to bring people together and the power of young people to change their schools and communities. You don’t have to be a great artist - just willing to learn! For more information, please contact Jane Ellis at 207-934-3616.

Parkside Neighborhood Center is an organization that exists to strengthen individuals and families by offering a variety of educational, employment, and cultural opportunities to children and families. They have countless ways to get involved with their efforts, such as their Night-Light After-School Program, which is offered for two hours every day after school for youth in 1st-5th grade. They also need help with the King-Parkside Collaborative (KPAC) Middle School Program, which is an afterschool program for 6th-7th grades on Wednesdays and Thursdays. Volunteers are needed every weekday between these two programs to help with individual tutoring/academic support, activities, snacks, and more from around 3:00-5:30 PM. Please contact Joe Kosnow at 553-5945, joseph.kosnow@opportunityalliance.org if interested. 


 

Advocacy & Activism: 

Newly added to CECD's Upcoming Volunteer Opportunities, Advocacy & Activism will show you a variety of opportunities to be involved in social justice efforts in your community! 

View: Events  |  Student Groups  |  Organizations  

 

Events 

 

Student Groups 

Huskies for Reproductive Health - HRH's main focus is sexual health and education and activism efforts to fight for reproductive health funding and other healthcare initiatives. They work alongside University Health and Counseling to provide sexual health services and expert sexual education, the QSA to raise awareness and address issues in the LGBTQ+ community, and a variety of other student groups and organizations. They have opportunities to be involved by planning projects and events at USM, as well as connections with outside organizations in the area. Please contact Emma Donnelly at emma.donnelly@maine.edu for more information. Check out their Facebook page to stay updated with their activism efforts! 

International Relations Association - The IRA is a group of students with a shared interest in the international community and the issues the world faces today. The IRA meets weekly to discuss and debate solutions to these issues. In addition, the IRA attends national and international model United Nations conferences, as well as assists in hosting USM’s high school conference, MeMUNC. The IRA is committed to giving back to the community, and hosts civil service projects in the greater Portland area. They meet weekly on Tuesdays at 5:00 - 6:00 PM in the Student Government Association office. For more information, contact the Executive Board at ira.usm@gmail.com

The Multicultural Center at USM works on efforts for diversity and inclusion within our community. They also engage in advocacy efforts and respond if there are any negative actions or attitudes towards cultural and national diversity. They work towards creating a more welcoming environment for people of all nationalities, ethnicities, and religions. Within the Center, there are various student groups that have special focuses for their work. Please contact Mariana Cruz at mariana.cruz@maine.edu for more information. 

Muskie Student Organization - The mission of the MSO is to build strong student community within the Muskie School, create opportunities for civic discourse on public policy issues, and advocate for students in policy-making and decision-making. Students discuss issues, identify solutions, organize events, and engage in public policy, health, and planning issues. For more information, please email Jamie McFaul at jamie.mcfaul@maine.edu.  

Queer Straight Alliance - The QSA meets weekly to work on efforts to make USM a more safe and welcoming environment for the LGBTQ+ community. They also work on advocacy initiatives, such as the fight for more gender neutral bathrooms on campus. They meet weekly on the Gorham campus. Please contact Molly Roberts at molly.a.roberts@maine.edu for more information! 

Students for #USMfuture - The mission of Students for #USMfuture is to organize and advocate for the students, faculty, and staff of USM. They work to foster a safe, respectful, and equitable campus for all students. They also work to ensure that USM is a high quality institution accessible to all students regardless of race, class, gender or any other part of their identity. USMfuture advocates for more state funding for Maine’s institutions of public higher education and towards the goal of free education for all. 

USM Socialists - The Portland branch of the International Socialist Organization, USM Socialists, works to build a socialist alternative in a world of poverty, oppression, and war. They participate in many different struggles for justice and liberation, while working toward a future socialist society, free of all exploitation and oppression, and built on the principles of solidarity and democracy. They meet weekly on Wednesdays at 7:00 PM in Payson Smith 205. Please email usm.socialists@gmail.com for more information. 

 

 

Community Organizations 

350 Maine - 350 Maine is a grassroots movement dedicated to solving the planetary climate crisis. They grow their power collectively to find real and lasting solutions, to end dependence on fossil fuels, and to build a healthy, sustainable life for people and the planet. To get involved with 350 Maine’s efforts to move towards a fossil-fuel free future, please visit their Facebook page or email info@350maine.org  

American Cancer Society- The ACS Cancer Action Network works to make ensure that leaders take real steps towards finishing the fight against cancer. As an ACS CAN volunteer, you will meet with legislators, plan events, encourage new membership, make phone calls, and more. Short-term and long-term opportunities are available nationwide and online. Click here to sign up! For more information, call 1-800-227-2345. 

Maine Citizens for Clean Elections - MCCE is a nonpartisan organization that works in the public interest to advocate for, increase public support for, defend and improve the Maine clean election act and related campaign finance law. Opportunities to get involved include internships, research and politics, outreach, advocacy, business research, and service-learning. For more information, call 207-831-6223 or email info@mainecleanelections.org

Maine Resists - Maine Resists is a centralized resource for upcoming protests and other political actions happening in Maine that support social and economic justice. Check out their calendar of events. Know about an event not listed? Submit it here. For more information, please contact info@maineresists.org

National Alliance on Mental Illness - NAMI is the nation’s largest grassroots mental health organization dedicated to building better lives for the millions of Americans affected by mental illness. They have a variety of advocacy opportunities, including securing funding for research, protecting people's access to treatment, and attaining mental health parity. To contact NAMI's local state office, call 207-622-5767 or email info@namimaine.org

Portland Racial Justice Congress - PRJC works on initiatives to create a more socially conscious, culturally vibrant, and racially just city. They are a group of students, activists, and concerned citizens who are promoting multiculturalism, social consciousness, and racial justice in the Greater Portland area. Please visit their website or email prjcmaine@gmail.com for more information.

Sexual Assault Response Services of Southern Maine - SARSSM offers a free and confidential advocacy to those affected by sexual violence in York and Cumberland counties. They offer a crisis and support line (1-800-313-9900), support groups, and SART advocates to work with victims. They have a variety of volunteer opportunities to be involved with. For more information or to submit a completed general application or a crisis and support line advocate application, please email infosars@sarsonline.org

Standing Up for Racial Justice - SURJ is a national network of groups and individuals organizing white people for racial justice. Through community organizing, mobilizing, and education, SURJ moves white people to act as part of a multi-racial majority for justice with passion and accountability. They provide a space to build relationships, skills, and political analysis to act for change. Visit their Facebook page or email greaterportlandsurj@gmail.com for more information.