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Volunteer from home, earn service hours
Students in grades 7–12: Give back to your community and help others without leaving home. You'll earn volunteer hours, too! This program is completely flexible: no library card required; no application or training; volunteer when it fits your schedule; no minimum or maximum hours. Do what you can, when you can! And you'll make a positive difference in the world.
How do I start?
- Select an organization from the "volunteer activities," listed below.
- Follow the directions on the organization's website to complete volunteer work.
- Choose one organization (project) or a few to receive as many volunteer hours as you need.
How do I earn hours?
- For each activity that you complete, fill out and submit the Teen Volunteering: Online Service Projects form.
- Take a photo of your finished volunteer project (e.g. drawing, coloring project, letter, card, etc.) and upload it to the form. No selfies required.
- If you do not submit a photo or complete the form, you will not receive credit for the activity you submitted.
- Submit one form per activity: no limit on the number of submissions.
- Submit forms no later than Friday, April 30, 2021.
- Once the teen volunteer program ends on April 30th, hours will be totaled for all volunteers who complete the program.
- Certificates include your name, hours that you volunteered, and the volunteer coordinator's signature.
- Certificates will be emailed in mid-May to all who successfully completed the program and submitted the required forms.
Service Hour Verification
- Volunteer hours can only be verified after certificates are emailed after the program ends in April.
- After certificates are emailed, the volunteer or school representative can email the form or link to the volunteer coordinator at firstname.lastname@example.org to have hours verified.
Will the online volunteer program be held again?
- The online volunteer program will begin a new session in June 2021.
By the People
Help the Library of Congress make documents searchable in their catalog. You'll assist in transcribing original items, many of which have never been transcribed before. Anyone can transcribe and an account is not needed. (Earn 2 volunteer hours; can be done multiple times.)
Cards for Hospitalized Kids
Brighten a child's day! Create as many cards as you like. Visit the website for details and instructions. (Earn 1 volunteer hour; can be done multiple times.)
Color a Smile
Print out these pages and get coloring: finished pages are sent to senior citizens and troops overseas. Follow the instructions on the website for mailing your finished pages. (Earn 1 volunteer hour; can be done multiple times.)
Love for Our Elders
Make someone's day a little brighter! Hand-write letters to residents in senior facilities. (Earn 1 volunteer hour; can be done multiple times.)
National Archives: Citizen Archivist
Register for a free account and pick a mission to tag and transcribe. Your tagging and transcribing will make these records more accessible in the National Archives Catalog. (Earn 2 volunteer hours, can be done multiple times.)
Write letters (digitally or handwritten) to children in orphanages from all around the world and help make a positive impact. (Earn 1 volunteer hour; can be done multiple times).
Smithsonian Digital Volunteers: Transcription Center
Learn to transcribe historical documents and biodiversity data to make these records more accessible. (Earn 2 volunteer hours; can be done multiple times.)
Students Rebuild: Changemaker Challenge
Students Rebuild knows students are facing a number of challenges every day: remote learning, a global pandemic, and more. They invite students to make awards for changemakers in their community who help to make a difference. Register to participate. For each award shared with Students Rebuild, the Bezos Family Foundation will make a $5 donation to programs and organizations supporting changemakers, youth and educators around the world. (Earn 1 volunteer hour; can be done multiple times).
Add your experience to the social and historical record of this unprecedented time of upheaval. Click on the "Share" link on the website to write about your experience in one of these categories: I am here; I am helping; I am okay; I am not okay. (Earn 2 volunteer hours; can be done multiple times.)
Zooniverse provides research opportunities in a variety of topics including the sciences, humanities, and more in an attempt to "unlock and contribute to new discoveries." Volunteer opportunities include transcribing historical documents or helping scientists spot things in space. Register for a free account to choose your project. Please note: the equivalent of 20-30 classifications would be equal to the volunteering requirement of 2 hours. (Earn 2 volunteer hours; can be done multiple times.)
Online Service Projects Form
Teen Volunteer Coordinator
Thank you, past volunteers!
Fall's program, by the numbers...
- 80 volunteers in grades 7–12
- 682 activities
- 1,081 total volunteer hours