COVID-19 | Boston Cares

Updated 4.6.20

Boston Cares, and our partners, are closely monitoring the coronavirus and following the information and recommendations being released by the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), the City of Boston, and the State of Massachusetts . The health and safety of our staff, community partners, and corporate partners continues to be our priority. This page will be regularly updated with our response.

We continue to work with our partners to assess and fill their needs – whether they’re the same needs as before managed a little differently, or a newly emerging needs. Daily, our team is working to change the way we do things to make it possible for volunteers to engage.


If you are not yet a Boston Cares member, we welcome you to join us by attending a virtual New Volunteer Orientation. Please note that most COVID-19 related projects do not require an orientation, but participating will provide volunteers with an overview of our programs and prepare you to volunteer in other opportunities after we return to normal operations.


Ready to volunteer? The list below focuses on opportunities that are either COVID-19 related, or seeing an increase in need as they respond to the crisis. Additional opportunities are still available on our Calendar as well.

Volunteer Opportunities:


We are proud to parter with the City of Boston, BPS, YMCA of Greater Boston, and the Greater Boston Food Bank to provide a platform for volunteer recruitment and management around COVID-19 response. Opportunities will be updated as they become available and volunteers will be connected with each agency when signing up. Please click the options below for opportunities to support the community during this public health crisis. 


The City of Boston & Boston Public Schools: Distributing free breakfast and lunch during school closures and delivering food to families in need.


YMCA of Greater Boston: Distributing free breakfast and lunch at YMCAs and other sites around the city.


The American Red Cross of Massachusetts: 

East End House Food Pantry: 

Friday Night Supper Program

Fourth Presbyterian Church Food Pantry:


***Please note: We are asking you not  to volunteer if you are feeling unwell or have a fever, if you have knowingly been exposed to COVID-19, or if you have been ill/had a fever within the last 48 hours.  All projects will provide volutneers with appropriate space for social distancing and protection. Be sure to read our safety requirements for volunteers.


If you’re already a Boston Cares member, thank you for being a volunteer. Please keep in mind that the opportunities you see in the coming weeks may be a little different – you may not have a Volunteer Leader, you may be asked to make a commitment to a regular schedule, or you may be referred directly to our nonprofit partners. Whatever the case, we’re certain that your services are needed and our partners are making adjustments and plans to ensure the safety of all volunteers and community members.

We will share updates as things evolve, but in the meantime, thanks for doing your part to ensure the safety and well-being of you and the Greater Boston Community. If you would like to support our work with a financial contribution you can do so below.  Your financial support during this time allows us to maintain our operations, continue to provide volunteers to our partners who need them, develop new ways to support our community, and prepare to return to our regular programming. 


4/6/2020 Update

Our Internal Plan:

This kind of pandemic planning is new for everyone and we are lucky to have the support of our fellow Points of Light Global Network Affiliates to learn from what others are doing across the globe to deal with the crisis. Below you can find our team’s internal plan for handling the COVID-19 pandemic. To date, we have:

  • Established open assessment and communication lines among senior staff for decision making and information sharing to staff and stakeholders.
  • Closed the office through May 4, 2020 in response to Governor Baker's non-essential business closures with Boston Cares' staff supporting the COVID-19 crisis remotely.
  • Addressed the needs for staff to work from homeby equipping our team with the tools and resources to do so.


Our Community Partner Plan:

We are working on contingency plans with all of our partners to keep the community’s best interest first. We will:

  • Default to our nonprofit partners judgement on their ability to stay open and support service members or volunteers during this crisis. Please note that if a regularly occurring project is not currently appearing our Calendar, the project has been cancelled by the nonprofit partner and we will re-post at the partner’s request.
  • Ask volunteers (or volunteers of family members) that have been exposed to COVID-19 to follow advice of public health officials to self-quarantine and NOT volunteer with us for at least 14-days.
  • Listen carefully to our nonprofit and school partners and promoting their urgent needs on our calendar and via our social media.
  • Work with partners that are seeing an increase in need to identify safe ways for volunteers to support the community and exploring opportunities for virtual support. Please stay tuned for more information as we work through these new situations.


Our Corporate Partner Plan:

  • We have effectively postponed all corporate events thorugh May 4, 2020. We are working with each of our partners individually to adjust project plans as needed.
  • Offering new ways for current and new corporate partners to engage with Boston Cares and the local community virtually, more information on opportunities can be found here.
  • For new partners looking to engage this year, please contact us soon so we can be sure to schedule your date later this year before our calendar fills as we except to see many of our spring projects shift to dates into the summer/fall. We are using this time to establish new partnerships and project plans – please reach out to Kacey Sanfilippo to set up a call at or 617-422-0913.


If you have additional questions or concerns, please reach out to us at and check back here as we will keep this page updated with any changes.