Opportunity Details

Civic & Community

Age Minimum (with Adult): 13+, Minimum Age:13+

New Volunteer Orientation: Downtown Boston

Boston Cares is a flexible volunteer agency that connects individuals with volunteer opportunities throughout Greater Boston. To become a Boston Cares member and begin signing up for projects online, you must attend a brief, one-time New Volunteer Orientation. Every orientation covers the same material, so feel free to sign up for the session that best fits your schedule.

COVID-19 UPDATE effective 3/16/2020:
In response to the ongoing coronavirus concerns, effective March 16, 2020, Boston Cares will move our New Volunteer Orientations to live virtual sessions until social distancing recommendations are lifted by local officials.  Sessions listed below will be web-based - please ignore any referene to physical location while we update our systems. A link for a live webinar will be emailed to registered participants prior to the scheduled sessions. While video capabilities are not required for participation, we do encourage it for the opportunity to connect with your fellow volunteers – something we all need as we practice social distancing during this time!
We are currently seeing a number of our nonprofit partners pause their volunteer projects in response to COVID-19, while others are expressing an increase in need due to larger volunteer groups cancelling.  We are working through this with all of our partners and keeping available projects up to date on our website.  We encourage you to get oriented as a Boston Cares volunteer now so you can be ready to help where needed. 

While we do offer an online tracking system through which volunteers can review and print out their own service record, Boston Cares staff, nonprofit partners and volunteer project leaders are unable to personally sign off on your hours. Individuals who have completed a New Volunteer Orientation have access to approximately 200 service projects each month, ranging from 1 to 6 hours. Our web-based system allows volunteers to register online for projects in advance and also to track and print out their volunteering history. This is an honor system and all volunteers are expected to accurately record their volunteer service.
Orientations take place several times each month including evening, lunch and weekend sessions. Each session runs for approximately one-hour and is designed to accomplish several goals:
  • Introduce new volunteers to Boston Cares, including our mission, programs and history
  • Introduce new volunteers to each other
  • Review the website, including how to sign-up for projects
Please note that Boston Cares collects a one-time registration fee from all new members. The fee helps us cover a small portion of the costs associated with providing programs to our volunteers, and supporting volunteer management for our agency partners. The fee can be paid online prior to your orientation at http://bit.ly/bcnvo.

Registration fees are transferable and non-refundable. If you pre-pay your registration fee and are unable to attend, we can apply that fee to a future orientation date for you or someone else.

Boston Cares registration fee structure:
  • $30 for individuals
  • $20 for students, seniors, veterans, and unemployed
  • Fee waived for active duty military personnel, active AmeriCorps volunteers, and Middle & High Schoolers
We do not want to this to be a burden for those wishing to volunteer so if the registration fee is a source of stress or concern, please contact volunteers@bostoncares.org.

Court Ordered Service: if you are doing court-ordered service, you may be able to complete your hours through Boston Cares. Please contact the Trial Court Community Service Program to confirm your elligibility.

Youth-friendly, 13+. All youth may register and attend orientations on their own. All volunteers under 18 years old must bring a Permission Form signed by a parent or guardian to give to the Project Leader. Please email volunteers@bostoncares.org or call 617-422-0910 x209 if you have any questions.

What Boston Cares members have to say about the New Volunteer Orientation:
"Attending the orientation helped me realize that there is far more to Boston Cares than a bunch of (really cool) volunteering opportunities. This orientation only confirmed for me that I made the right choice in pursuing my interests in volunteering through this particular organization. I look forward to all of the events that I plan on attending!" -Chrissy Henry
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