If you would like to volunteer outdoors or if you enjoy helping the environment, here are some great organizations to help! (If you are interested in learning more about any of these charities, feel free to explore their full pages.)
Trees for Houston
This charity plants, protects, and promotes trees throughout the greater Houston area.
Trees for Houston has at least two annual tree planting days, in November and December. If you would like to plan a tree planting in your own community, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org. If you would like to stay updated on all volunteer opportunities, click here to join the email list.
Habitat for Humanity
If you are 16 or older, you can help build homes for low-income Houstonians. You will even be working alongside the future homeowners, who contribute “sweat equity” and complete home maintenance and financial training to buy homes with zero interest mortgages. This volunteer opportunity is sure to provide plenty of outdoor physical activity, as well as a very fulfilling experience.
Galveston Bay Foundation
Volunteer with a nonprofit that works “to preserve and enhance Galveston Bay as a healthy and productive place for generations to come” though advocacy, conservation, education, and research.
All ages can help with the Abandoned Crab Trap Removal (February), the Armand Bayou Trash Bash (March), Marsh Mania marsh grass planting (April), or the Bay Day Festival (May), or assist in other ways. These are great ways to get your hands dirty and to enjoy the beach for a good cause.
Nature Discovery Center
If you are 13 or up, you can volunteer at a “unique and treasured education center and nature park,” located in Bellaire’s Russ Pitman Park, which “serves as an outdoor classroom for our nature science programming and also offers a nature play area.”
Be a counselors for camps held during the summer and during school breaks, work as an animal care assistant, special event assistant, or Discovery Room guide. If you are a Boy Scout, the Center welcomes Scout projects.
Descendants of Olivewood, Inc.
Volunteer at a nonprofit that is working to clean, beautify, and revitalize the 6-acre Olivewood Cemetery, Houston’s first incorporated African American cemetery, which had suffered decades of neglect.
All ages are welcome. Tasks include mowing grass, clearing weeds and brush, and planting flowers.
If you’re 15, you can volunteer at an affordable home away from home for transplant patients and their families who travel to the Texas Medical Center for their surgery. The facility includes a shared kitchen, family spaces, and gardens; it offers “a warm, loving, and home-like environment so guests can focus on what is truly important – getting well.”
If you would like to work outdoors, you can help by gardening. If not, there is plenty of work to be done preparing meals, playing games and doing art activities with guests, collecting kitchen supplies or other needed items, and helping to maintain their website.
Volunteer at a nonprofit that distributes 3.9 million pounds to food each year to food insecure seniors, children, and families who face the risk of going hungry every day. Its services include food pantries, community and educational gardens, senior home delivery routes, and a free breakfast program.
If you would like to work outside, 16-year old volunteers or those accompanied by a parent may work in the community gardens. Beginning and experienced Community Garden Team members work together to grow nutritious produce for the community, increase their gardening skills and support Target Hunger’s Food Pantries by offsetting the price of fresh produce.
Volunteers may also help with the food pantries and distribution center, educational food fairs, community gardens, special events, and administrative tasks.
Buffalo Bayou Partnership
This non-profit organization is revitalizing and transforming Buffalo Bayou, Houston’s most significant natural resource. Work includes addition of major destinations, landscaping, footpaths, water features, and pedestrian bridges in Buffalo Bayou Park.
This is a great way to volunteer outdoors, because groups or individual volunteers can help with gardening, invasive species removal. trash pickup, trail work, special events such as KBR Kids Day, or administrative tasks. There is a volunteer day on the third Saturday of each month.
Happy volunteering outdoors!
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