Image for spinner

Youth Volunteering

Boston Cares offers National Days of Service events such as MLK Day of Service.  and some age-friendly Calendar projects for volunteers under 18. The overall minimum age for all Boston Cares programs is 5 years old. Please note that each of our agency partners in the Calendar Program determine the age restrictions for their projects, based on their policies and the appropriateness of the project for young volunteers. Boston Cares does not have the ability to allow volunteers younger than the listed age requirements to register for a project.

All Boston Cares project pages will have two age minimums listed for the specific project, one for volunteers attending alone and one for volunteers if they have an adult chaperone. These ages may be the same for some projects or different, depending on the partner agency. Tip: when looking for a project on the Calendar, use the “Basic Search and Search Options” function on top of the Calendar page to filter for projects that accept youth.


Boston Cares Youth Policies

Note: All volunteers under 18 must bring a signed youth waiver to each project they attend. 

Volunteers 12 and Under:

  • Can attend a volunteer opportunity if accompanied by a Parent/ Guardian (who is a Boston Cares member) and meets the age requirements stated in the volunteer opportunity
  • Parent/Guardian must email to register youth for the volunteer opportunity
  • Must bring a signed youth waiver to the volunteer opportunity

Volunteers 13 - 17: 

  • Can create a Boston Cares account and register for volunteer opportunities on the Boston Cares website
  • Can attend a volunteer opportunity alone if age requirements of volunteer opportunity allow
  • Can attend opportunities with non-parental/ guardian chaperon (who is a Boston Cares member) if age requirements of volunteer opportunity allow
  • Must bring a signed youth waiver to the volunteer opportunity


Tracking Your Service Hours for School

Boston Cares offers an easy way to track and print your service hours through your account! Each time you volunteer through a Boston Cares project, the trained Volunteer Leader or partner staff member will mark attendance so that your hours appear on your account page. You can also “self-report” the service hours you do outside of Boston Cares to track all your hours in one place.

For questions or to request a letter saying how many hours you’ve recorded, please email


Service Awards

The President’s Volunteer Service Award and Boston Cares Service Champions Award are great ways for youth volunteers to work towards service hour goals and build their resume. Check out the Volunteer Service Award page for more info. Note: If a volunteer ages into a new age group during the course of the service year, Boston Cares will consider them a part of the category they were for the majority of the year.