From LGBTQ + programs to nonprofits that help the elderly, there are a few ways you can keep the city’s golden nickname going.
We could all use good news now, even if that means doing it ourselves. Fortunately, as relatively small as the city is, San Francisco is full of giving back organizations. Whether your volunteering idea is to pack groceries for people affected by shelter, tutoring creative writing, or walking the dog, here are 14 ways you can help SF right now.
For the community lawyer
Volunteers at Rebuild together are trained to perform free repairs and safety renovations for the elderly, disabled, and low-income residents of San Francisco. During COVID-19, volunteers are currently needed for their “Saving Face” program, which makes 1,000 masks a week for medical professionals and workers. They can also donate and take part in their monthly quiz nights that help fund program or sponsor a special benefit like next spring’s Builders & Brewers event.
The free court is a small, volunteer-run organization that has been distributing free locally grown food in the mission district for 11 years. Volunteering is limited due to restrictions on on-site accommodation. However, if you can’t get involved by distributing prepackaged food, the organization needs organic products too. So if you grow your own, you can donate it to the organization cause. Disposable gloves, masks and donations of recycled plastic and paper bags are also urgently needed to continue the distribution safely.
Open Hand project seeks volunteers to pack meals and weekly groceries and deliver them to the seriously ill and physically vulnerable residents of the city while they distance themselves socially. Check the Volunteer Hot Spots page for regularly updated opportunities. You can also donate toiletries or face masks for people in need or individually wrapped lunches for the volunteers.
Little Brothers elderly friends
For the people person
If you are looking for a way to connect with others, Little Brothers elderly friends offers the opportunity to build friendships with the city’s 25,000 senior citizens living alone. While regular volunteer offers include vacation and birthday visits or escort seniors to their hospital visits, volunteers only need to check-in by phone to have a friendly ear for on-site orders. You can also donate essential items like toiletries for their senior care kits.
Open house connects volunteers with LGBTQ + seniors and adults with disabilities looking for shelter, transportation and medical care. They are currently looking for volunteers who can run important errands and make phone calls. If you’re unavailable to make a call, Openhouse also accepts funds and product donations for the senior care kits of toiletries, cleaning supplies, and pharmacy gift cards.
If you are available for grocery shopping, walking the dog, or picking up medicine, Shanti project needs assistance in supporting residents with incurable or disabled diseases and conditions. Take part in their COVID Volunteer Program (CERV) for personal occasions or donate through the organization link for eligible purchases when shopping on Amazon.
Musicians on call
For music lovers
Your talents are in demand for everyone looking for a musical outlet. Musicians on callThe company, which launched a chapter in San Francisco in 2016, is seeking volunteer musicians and singers for the Virtual Bedside Performance Program, which offers bedridden adults, seniors, and children 30- to 60-minute live sessions. If you are not musically gifted but still want to help, you can donate to help fund the chapter.826 Valencia
For the youth attorney
Do you remember a book in your English class that you really enjoyed reading and writing about? Well, 826 Valencia is the perfect opportunity to pass on that excitement for learning. Help low-income students find their voice and improve their creative writing skills through online tutoring. Monetary donations are also accepted to keep programs for underprivileged students in the city free.
Anyone obsessed with food contest shows or who has surprised themselves with their newfound culinary skills should check this out Sprout Cooking Club, which educates disadvantaged young people about healthy cooking and eating habits through its programs. Volunteers can currently attend the Virtual Chef-Led Dinner Series by teaching a class or helping with questions during the sessions. Donations for kitchen utensils, products, and office supplies are also needed to support various programs and students.
Pomeroy Recreational and Rehabilitation Center
For helping the disenfranchised
The Pomeroy Recreational and Rehabilitation Center offers educational and recreational spaces in which people with disabilities and trauma can safely participate. While social distancing continues, Pomeroy takes their programs virtual and needs volunteers to lead remote activities (as well as volunteers on social media and with technical skills to nurture and support them). Courses on offer include yoga & meditation sessions, cooking classes and storytime sections, as well as art therapy, dance and science classes for adults ages 20 to 90 or children and teens ages 5 to 19.
If you are interested in women’s rights, San Francisco Women Against Rape (SFWAR) is a women-led organization that provides support and legal assistance to survivors of sexual violence. Volunteers are urgently needed on their 24 hour hotline to help women and children who are stuck in abusive environments while ordering on site. Open to all volunteers, especially self-identifying LBGTQ +, migrant and former incarcerated women, SFWAR provides state-certified sexual assault counseling training for volunteers who wish to work directly with survivors.
For people in the medical field with extra time to give back, this is San Francisco Community Health Center (SFCHC) is seeking volunteer RNs for their Trans: Thrive resource center to provide health services to the trans and homeless community. Non-medical volunteers are also required to help with support groups in the virtual community.
If you have a legal background and can offer free representation and / or advice, Legal assistance for the elderly needs your help working with the elderly and disabled in San Francisco. They are looking for attorneys, paralegals, and law students to help with COVID-19-specific issues such as evictions and medical bills, as well as non-pandemic battles such as elderly abuse, health care, and debt protection. Volunteers with experience in digital marketing and IT are also needed to grow the company’s digital presence.
The LGBTQ + is run by volunteers Rainbow World Fund focuses on changing the international perception of the LGBTQ + community providing essential medicines, food and supplies to people affected by natural disasters, poverty and oppression – regardless of their sexual orientation. Volunteers are needed for administrative work and assistance with humanitarian trips such as clearing landmines in Cambodia and assisting LGBT refugees in Iraq and Uganda. Donations and wishlist entries are also accepted.
Now you are armed with the tools to build a brighter future for the bay. Go out, virtual (or not).