Here are several ways to make a difference in the lives of those affected by Hurricane Harvey. Everything on this list can be done by volunteers under the age of 18. Please check to make sure the needs are current. We will add more ideas as we learn about them.
HELP DISPLACED ANIMALS AT HOUSTON PETS ALIVE SHELTER
Pets Alive’s shelter takes in pets affected by Hurricane Harvey, and is looking for donations and volunteers. Volunteers are needed to walk dogs and care for cats, foster pets, adopt pets, and help with pet transportation. Minors may volunteer, but must be supervised by an adult.
Learn more about how you can help, and view a complete list of needed donations by visiting the Houston Pets Alive website here.
VOLUNTEER OR DONATE AT ST. LUKE’S METHODIST CHURCH
St. Luke’s Methodist Church is currently accepting volunteers and donations to help those affected by Harvey.
Volunteers are needed to muck houses by moving furniture and ripping out affected flooring/sheet rock, do laundry for displaced church members, volunteer at the operations center, check on church members in specific zip codes, host displaced church members, or cook and deliver food for volunteers.
VOLUNTEER AT NORTHWEST ASSISTANCE MINISTRIES (NAM)
Northwest Assistance Ministries (NAM) welcomes volunteers between 9 a.m. and 3 p.m. to assist with moving and unloading drop-off donations, sorting donations and staging areas for donation items, and delivering meals and groceries to seniors and disabled adults in our community (9 a.m. to 12 p.m.).
To volunteer you must be 18 years old unless accompanied by an adult and have a photo ID. Contact Courtney Frost-Tadlock at 281-885-4604 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org for more info. To sign up for volunteering, click here. To learn more about NAM, click here.
VOLUNTEER AT THE HARVEY HOUSTON DAY CAMP
Congregation El Emanuel is hosting a camp for children whose families suffered damage through Monday, 9/2. Shifts are from 7am-1pm and 1-6. Walk-in volunteers are welcome.
The camp is also a partnership with URJ Greene Family Camp, the Evelyn Rubenstein Jewish Community Center of Houston and Union for Reform Judaism.
For more information, visit their Facebook page here or email Emily Caulfield at email@example.com.
HELP REPAIR DAMAGED HOMES WITH CROSSPOINT CHURCH
Crosspoint Church, in Bellaire, is sending teams of volunteers to help local residents with flood-damaged homes.
Visit their website for ongoing updates on the daily volunteer schedule, supply donation needs, and information on how to help by clicking here.
VOLUNTEER AT UNDIES FOR EVERYONE
Undies for Everyone collects and distributes underwear to low-income Houston and Dallas students by delivering them directly to the students or giving them to nurses within low-income schools when a student has an accident. This enhances students’ self-esteem, dignity, hygiene, and success in the classroom.
Many of those who have been displaced by Hurricane Harvey still need clean underwear. To help sort and distribute underwear, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org or call (713) 338-9676. For more information about Undies for Everyone, visit their website by clicking here.
Address: 1700 Bissonnet Street, Houston, TX 77005
VOLUNTEER AT THE HOUSTON FOOD BANK
The Houston Food Bank is working extra-hard to cope with all of the needs arising from Hurricane Harvey, and it needs lots of help sorting and packaging food. Teens and younger kids are welcome. You should register for a shift before you come; the sign-up is here.
SORT BOOKS FOR BOOKS BETWEEN KIDS
Books Between Kids serves Houston’s at-risk children by providing them with books to build their own home libraries. After Hurricane Harvey, many children and families have lost their home libraries to the floods, so Books Between Kids is working to bring more books to these children.
Volunteers can help sort books at the Books Between Kids warehouse, and they are also encouraged to bring gently used children’s books and supplies to the warehouse.
Children accompanied by parents or guardians are welcome. Sign up to volunteer by clicking here. Volunteers must also fill out this form to confirm that they are willing to volunteer by clicking here.
Email email@example.com or call 832-831-1402 for more information. Warehouse Address: 9947 Harwin Drive, Suite B, Houston 77036.
SERVE THE HOMELESS AT THE BEACON
The Beacon serves Houston’s homeless by providing meals, showers, laundry, counseling, and other services. Volunteers are needed to help serve meals, do laundry, and greet clients.
The Beacon needs volunteers most on weekdays, especially on Tuesdays and Wednesdays, and after 2 PM. If you can, please sign up and help at
The shelter also welcomes donations of non-perishable healthy snacks, such as granola bars and individual packages of nuts, small containers of personal hygiene products, and clothing, especially new socks and underwear, and new or gently used clothing.
Please contact the Beacon’s Volunteer Coordinator, Ron Marshall, at firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
VOLUNTEER AT NRG CENTER
NRG Center has been transformed into a major shelter for those displaced by Hurricane Harvey. BakerRipley, a nonprofit community development organization, is leading this effort.
Volunteers aged 16 and up can help by sorting donations of clothing and toiletries, assisting with client intake, caring for children in the “Kids’ Zone,” handing out snacks, caring for evacuees’ pets, and keeping the facilities clean and organized. General donations are no longer needed.
VOLUNTEER AT LAKEWOOD CHURCH
Lakewood has opened its doors as a shelter, and is inviting volunteers to help set-up, organize, and sort donations. They have received many volunteers already, so it is best to volunteer in the early morning and in the night, when help is most scarce and most needed. Donations are no longer needed due to the community’s positive response.
Address: 3700 Southwest Fwy, Houston, TX 77027.
HELP REPAIR HOMES IN HOUSTON’S NORTH SIDE
Avenue CDC (Community Development Corporation) is a nonprofit which seeks to build affordable homes and strengthen communities.
They have identified homes and apartments in the Greater Northside that will need some love and care after Hurricane Harvey.
PREPARE OR DELIVER MEALS FOR KIDS MEALS
Kids Meals is a nonprofit that works to end childhood hunger by delivering free, fresh, healthy meals, year-round Monday through Friday, to the doorsteps of hungry preschool-aged children.
These children rely on the daily service of Kids Meals, and many have gone without during the hurricane. If you would like to help prepare lunches or volunteer, sign up by clicking here.
Volunteers are also welcome to make and deliver their own lunch packs filled with non-perishable healthy foods to 330 Garden Oaks Blvd, 77018. Donations of small water bottles, ziplocks, healthy snacks and juice boxes are appreciated.
HELP AT WEST UNIVERSITY CHURCH OF CHRIST
West University Church of Christ needs donations and volunteers to help repair homes of those affected by Hurricane Harvey. Check their Facebook page for more current updates about when and where to volunteer by clicking here. Donations are being mobilized to folks living in low-income impacted neighborhoods.
Needed Donations: cleaning supplies, cases of drinks that don’t need refrigeration, non-perishable food items, baby supplies, hygiene products/toiletries, bedding, towels, new, packaged socks and underwear, and first aid kits.
Address: 3407 Bissonnet Street, Houston, TX 77005 | 713-666-3535.
DONATE PET SUPPLIES TO SHELTERS
The nonprofit shelter Friends for Life is organizing pet-related donations for animals affected by Hurricane Harvey, and has set up local dropoffs in neighborhoods like Montrose and the Heights. Learn more specific information by clicking here.
Also, if you used bags of kitty litter as sand bags to protect your home from flooding, consider donating them to a nearby non-profit animal shelter, such as Friends for Life, the Houston SPCA, or Citizens for Animal Protection (CAP).
CAP would also appreciate donations of animal crates, paper towels & bowls, food, towels, and blankets. Please drop donations at CAP Shelter between 10 am and 5 pm. Read more about CAP by clicking here.
VOLUNTEER AT THE HOUSTON COMMUNITY TOOLBANK
The Houston Toolbank is a nonprofit tool lending program that lends high-quality tools to volunteers from other nonprofits and disaster recovery groups.
Many people and crisis groups rely on the Toolbank after a natural disaster like Hurricane Harvey, because there is so much clean-up to be done, requiring plenty of tools. The Toolbank also assembles disaster relief readiness kits, so volunteers will have plenty to do.
The Toolbank is closed as of Tuesday, 8/29, due to road closures, but they have expressed a need for volunteers later in the week and going forward. Check their Facebook page for frequent updates by clicking here.
DONATE SUPPLIES TO THE NEHEMIAH CENTER
VIEW AN INTERACTIVE MAP OF HOUSTON’S SHELTERS
For detailed, up-to-date information about how to help during Harvey, you can browse an crowdsourced, interactive map showing which shelters near you are in need of specific resources and volunteers by clicking here.
DO YOU HAVE ANY OTHER VOLUNTEERING IDEAS?
Please email me at email@example.com if you know any other ways that Houstonians, particularly teens, can volunteer to help victims of Hurricane Harvey.