Lend a Helping Hand: It’s National Volunteer Month!

Feeling inspired to make a difference in your community? Take the first step towards meaningful volunteering today!

By Ashley Guidry, Communications Associate

“As you grow older, you will discover that you have two hands — one for helping yourself, and the other for helping others.” – Audrey Hepburn

Volunteerism has a rich history in the United States dating back to the 1700s when organized volunteer groups emerged during major events like the Revolutionary War and the Women’s March. Now, thanks to the Internet and the creation of volunteer management software, it’s easier than ever to share your time and passion for your favorite causes.

If you’re passionate about food insecurity, homelessness, or empowering underserved communities, there’s a volunteer opportunity waiting for you, whether it’s in-person or virtual. Legacy Community Health deeply values community service. As we honor Volunteer Week in Houston, here are a few groups where you can showcase your volunteering spirit!

  • AmeriCorps has been a beacon of hope to underserved communities across the nation since the 1990s. At Legacy, our AmeriCorps members channel their time and skills into supporting those in need. Individuals contemplating joining our team can follow the application instructions here and embark on a journey of service.
  • Young Leaders of Legacy (YLOL) is a group for young professionals who work to raise awareness about Legacy Community Health and build their professional careers. YLOL offers volunteer opportunities and collaborates with Legacy’s Little Readers program to organize their warehouse once a month. To learn more about how you can join YLOL email them at ylol@legacycommunityhealth.org.
  • Bread of Life follows the spirit of providing food and shelter to change the lives of fellow Houstonians. Founded in 1992, this group has been dedicated to Houston communities for years. It is in partnership with Beyonce’s BeyGOOD charity foundation and Tina Knowles-Lawson to conduct anti-hunger initiatives and disaster relief efforts. Legacy has also attended its Back-to-School events to educate the community about our services.
  • Houston Food Bank (HFB) provides food to underserved communities. This past year, HFB had about 111,029 volunteer visits and is always looking for new members to dedicate their time. Volunteers can help in their East Branch warehouse, meal-prep in Keegan’s Kitchen or even provide food at special events. Legacy has a long-standing partnership with HFB and collaborates on many projects, from volunteering in their warehouses to HFB staff teaching nutrition classes at our facilities.
  • Houston Area Women’s Center (HAWC) has saved many families from domestic violence since 1977. HAWC are also strong advocates against sexual assault and transforming the lives of survivors. With a volunteer base of up to 1,000 people, they are continuously looking for individuals or groups to join their cause. Those interested in helping can create supply kits for survivors, assist with onsite administrative duties, or participate in events hosted by HAWC. More information on how to apply can be found on their website.
  • Interfaith Ministries for Greater Houston (IMGH) stands as one of the city’s oldest interfaith service organizations, dedicated to uniting diverse groups. Annually, up to 4,000 volunteers lend a hand in helping refugees and homebound seniors. Those eager to help will undergo an orientation and, depending on the role, may need to do a background check. IMGH also collaborates with Meals on Wheels along with a program called Animeals. More available opportunities are listed on their site here.
  • March of Dimes (MoD) got their start in 1938 and has since expanded its presence across the country. Their mission is to bridge the health equity gap and aid mothers of color. Healthy moms lead to strong babies and Legacy are strong supporters of their cause. MoD has both virtual and at-home volunteering options depending on your location. Join us in making a difference by participating in their upcoming March for Babies marathon event on Sunday, May 5th, 2024. Donate to Legacy’s team and show your support!
  • The Montrose Center has served as a community hub working to empower LGBTQ Houstonians since 1978. The endless support of volunteers is integral to the Center’s continued success. Those interested in aiding them have several options from working with seniors in their Seniors Preparing for Rainbow Years (SPRY) program, mentoring adolescents in their Hatch Youth program, or contributing to their educational workshops. Regardless of age, there’s an opportunity for everyone to make a difference – all it takes is filling out an application here.
  • SIRE Therapeutic Horsemanship had its start in 1983 and it currently resides in two locations, Spring and Fulshear, TX. They provide a community where horses help individuals with disabilities from children to seniors. Volunteers can assist inside and outside the riding arena. The minimum volunteer age is 14 and no horse experience is required for certain volunteer positions. If you love working with horses and aiding individuals with disabilities, this opportunity is perfect for you!
  • Star of Hope works tirelessly to end homelessness among men, women and children. New volunteers are welcome and may apply here.

At its core, volunteering is about lending a helpful hand while fostering a sense of compassion for your community. Whether you connect with the organizations above or visit Volunteer Houston’s calendar for additional options, remember that your time and effort can truly change lives.

Interested in volunteering with Legacy? Reach out to our Program Development Director, Debra Costello at dcostello@legacycommunityhealth.org.