Volunteer and mission opportunities
We are all called to serve God in many ways, with many gifts. Serving one another with our time, energy and talents is a vital ministry, whether in local communities, around the nation or across the globe. The UCC's volunteer ministry opportunities offer ways to serve all over the United States. The UCC and DOC (Disciples of Christ) joint global ministries provide opportunities to do mission all over the globe. Below is more information on each of these important ministries, as well as info on some opportunities of special interest to young adults.
Global Ministries Global Mission Interns
Volunteer Ministries for Young Adults
The Global Ministries website is a wonderful resource for those interested in getting involved in mission work, whether through mission trips or by supporting missionaries' work from home. The site has information about both short-term (a few weeks or months) and long-term (a few years) mission opportunities grounded both in work and in educational experiences. The site also highlights opportunities specifically for youth, young adults, seminarians and other special groups.
UCC Volunteer Ministries provides a wide variety of opportunities to serve. Short-term projects can be as short as two weeks, while long-term service for a year or more is also available. Some summer programs are also available, ideal for students. Service opportunities exist all over the country and in Puerto Rico, and the minimum age and skills required vary greatly. Check out the website for more info, including the Partners in Service booklet of volunteer opportunities and an application form.
While applications can be accepted at any time, please bear in mind the deadlines for service:
April 1 for summer opportunities
May 1 for long-term placements beginning in September
September 1for long-term placements beginning in January
Applications received after these dates may be considered for the following year.
Below are just a few of the opportunities offered in the Partners in Service booklet.
Heifer Project International Learning and Livestock Center, Perryville, Arkansas
A hands-on campus for education about world hunger and solutions through animal agriculture in its outdoor "living classroom," offering opportunities to volunteer in the following areas: general education, livestock, horticulture, distribution, sales, maintenance, hosting, receptionist, and greetings. Volunteers must be at least 18. Long term, short term, and summer opportunities available.
Open Door Community, Atlanta, Georgia
A residential Christian community in the Catholic worker tradition, serving the homeless, poor and prisoners. Volunteers are needed to serve as resident advisors who work and live with community members and participate in a prison ministry at Central Georgia Prison. www.opendoorcommunity.orgVolunteers must be at least 20. Long term, short term, and summer opportunities available.
The Night Ministry, Chicago, Illinois
Responding to the needs of people on the nighttime streets of Chicago, including homeless and runaway youth, working poor adults, and children who need safe shelter. Volunteers are needed to serve in the Outreach and Health Ministries, the youth shelter, and with clerical and administrative office tasks. www.thenightministry.orgVolunteers must be at least 21. Only long term opportunities available.
Emmaus Homes and Emmaus Homes, Inc., St. Charles and Marthasville, Missouri
Dedicated to providing quality, long-term residential care for men and women who are developmentally disabled. Volunteers are sought to coordinate and assist with group activities, assist in recreation and residential services, serve as companions to residents, and assist with maintenance projects. Volunteers must be at least 18. Long term and short term opportunities available.
Old First Reformed UCC, Philadelphia, PA
A historic downtown church with an extensive outreach ministry that includes a homeless shelter that operates in the church November through May. A volunteer is needed to serve as liaison between the church and shelter, to make the schedules, work with the volunteers, help with special programs, and supervise the maintenance of kitchen and shelter space. Summer volunteers are needed to run a day camp for neighborhood children and coordinate a youth-employment program. A long-term volunteer is needed to serve as outreach worker and caretaker for the church property, to manage weekly food and clothing distributions and to direct a work camp program. Volunteers must be at least 18. Long term and summer opportunities available.
Plymouth House of Healing, Seattle, WA
A transitional home located on North Beacon Hill. It seeks resident companions to spend a year living in community with formerly homeless people who struggle with mental illness. Being a companion here is an opportunity to provide friendship and support. Volunteers must be at least 21. Long-term, short-term, and summer opportunities available.