Start with a Short-Term Project. Hands On Greater Portland, a volunteer program of United Way of the Columbia-Willamette, connects thousands of volunteers to projects every year. There are short-term (2 hours maximum) and long-term opportunities with a variety of organizations. Start with the Volunteer with Your Kids page for their calendar of upcoming family-friendly projects.
Gather Supplies for Shelters. Spend a few hours collecting and distributing items needed for shelters that serve people experiencing houselessness. Organizations in need of supplies include: Portland Family Homeless Solutions, Blanchet House, JOIN, CityTeam, Portland Rescue Mission, and Transition Projects. Check their websites for their most urgent needs.
Get Outdoors. Plant trees, get rid of invasive weeds, and help maintain school, community and public gardens! Check out Zenger Farm, Portland Fruit Tree Project, Friends of Trees, City of Gresham, and Portland Parks and Recreation for outdoor, nature-based opportunities.
Give Books! Collect used children's books in your community or neighborhood to donate to kids in the area who may not have access to books at home or at a library. Children's Book Bank is a local organization that distributes books to local Head Start programs and other community organizations in need of books.
Do you know of additional family-friendly service opportunities that we should include here? Please let us know and we'll add it to the list.