Are you civic-minded and looking for a new volunteer opportunity? There is never a bad time to give back to your community — and you don’t have to work for your local government to do it. We often hear from residents on social media who want to lend a helping hand but don’t know where to start. Everyone is passionate about something! If you’re interested in supporting and supplementing the work that our staff is doing to make Mecklenburg County a great place to live, check out some of the opportunities we have for volunteers.
Assistance With Veterans Events
Each year our Community Support Services department participates in two major events for our local veterans: The Veterans Experience Action Center and the Salute to Veterans Parade.
The Veterans Experience Action Center is a local event that gives veterans face-time with representatives that can help with disability claims and counsel them on benefits available to them through the Veterans Affairs Office. This year’s event just finished up but we look for volunteers every year! Lines are long, so cheerful volunteers with great customer service skills are needed to keep morale high and help with administrative tasks. If this is something you think you’ll be interested in next year, email CSScommunications@MecklenburgCountyNC.gov.
The Salute to Veterans Parade is an annual event celebrating Veterans Day and showcasing local JROTC program units, active military units and veteran organizations. If you’d like to help honor those who have served in the United States Armed Forces, volunteers are needed to help stage parade participants (get them checked-in, staged, etc.) Email Parade Chairman and Veterans Services Director Janene McGee at Janene.McGee@MecklenburgCountyNC.gov to inquire.
Working With Kids
Have a soft spot for kids? Maybe you were a teacher in a former life? Volunteers are needed to help read and score essays! The Do The Write Thing Essay Challenge gives middle school students an opportunity to examine the effect of youth violence on their lives. Students write about what they think should be done to reduce youth violence and make their own personal commitments to do something about the problem. Become a part of our judges panel – contact Prevention and Intervention Services at 704-336-3210 or email CSSPrevention@MecklenburgCountyNC.gov.
If being active is more your speed, maybe you’d like to coach one of our youth sports teams! Basketball season is right around the corner but our recreation centers have youth sports leagues year-round in baseball, football, soccer, cheerleading, and more. As a coach, you just need to be available to hold practices during the week and attend games on Saturday. Visit parkandrec.com to see what recreation centers are located near you and contact Volunteer Services at VolunteerServices@MeckNC.gov to learn what you need to do to get started.
Environmental Education Volunteers
Most people know that it’s important to recycle, but what’s really important is recycling right. Our Solid Waste department is looking for volunteers to talk with customers at our Full Service Drop Off Centers about how to recycle properly. This opportunity is open to anyone over 18 years of age, and in order to participate volunteers just need to take a one-hour class with Solid Waste to learn what items can and cannot be recycled. All volunteers would be placed at a staffed facility and will also be asked to hand out fliers. As a thank you, Solid Waste will send you home with compost or mulch!
To sign up, contact Lynn Knox at 980-314-3866 or Nick Crawford at 980-406-1109. You can also email SolidWaste@MeckNC.gov.
The Great Outdoors
They say there’s strength in numbers, and that’s especially true for volunteering. If you’re looking for something for a group, Mecklenburg County Park and Recreation has recurring Saturday projects to keep our parks looking their best. The type of group doesn’t matter – business, church, neighborhood, or Scouts – all participants just need to be at least 12 years old, have a pair of gloves, a water bottle and plenty of ENERGY! Our projects are park maintenance and beautification projects that typically include tasks like mulching, weeding, pruning and clean-ups.
And no, it doesn’t have to be a Saturday. We can arrange park maintenance/landscaping projects for any group of at least 10 people on Tuesdays, Wednesdays or Thursdays from 9 a.m. to 12 p.m. All we need is 2 weeks notice! One thing to keep in mind is that these park projects wind down in the winter, so let us know if you want to get on the schedule before Thanksgiving. Otherwise we’ll plan to meet you in the park spring of next year!
For all of the above Park and Rec opportunities, email VolunteerServices@MeckNC.gov or contact Karen Howard at 980-314-1046. Depending on the opportunity you choose, you’ll receive further instructions about how to sign up.
Our message is simple: if you want to give back to your community, volunteering through one of our programs is a great place to start. Don’t see something here that piques your interest? Share how you’d like to help and we’ll let you know if we have any opportunities for you!