10 Ways To Give Back To Memphis This Month (November 2018)

Posted by Holly Whitfield | November 12th 2018 1150 0

The holiday season is here, which means that many of you want to spend time giving back and serving the community. Luckily, Volunteer Odyssey and I Love Memphis make it super easy for you to help the city you love by publishing this monthly list of easy, fun ways to volunteer in Memphis.

Pro tip: If you want to volunteer on Thanksgiving or Christmas, sign up ASAP. These holidays are the busiest volunteering days of the year and opportunities tend to fill up quickly.  

Here are ten ideas for November (and December!) 2018.

1. Shelby Farms Park’s Starry Nights: November 22nd through December 28th at various times


Starry Nights is the largest holiday light show and festival in the Mid-South.  It’s also the longest running celebration at Shelby Farms Park.  The magic of the holidays is brought to life through twinkling light displays, cozy campfires and visits with Santa. Volunteers are needed to help ensure parking and visitor experience go smoothly for our visitors. This is a great opportunity for families, groups and individuals to serve!

Sign Up Here!

2. Memphis Botanic Garden’s Holiday Wonders at the Garden: every Thursday through Saturday until December 30th

Holiday Wonders at the Garden is designed to give everyone in the family a chance to enjoy the winter weather and celebrate the holiday season with light displays and seasonal activities. There’s always “snow” in My Big Backyard – even if Mother Nature didn’t supply it – as well as interactive winter fun and games for families to enjoy. Volunteers will help create a fun holiday environment! They will assist with scanning tickets, running activities, directing guests to where they need to go, and other tasks as needed. Volunteers will be fully trained prior to guests arriving! This will be a great way to spread some holiday cheer while also helping out! 

Sign Up Here!

3. Room In the Inn’s Evening Hospitality at Carpenter’s House: every Thursday from 4:15-6pm

Join Room In The Inn’s efforts to house homeless guests during the winter months. Volunteers are needed to help greet, check in guests, and provide fellowship while they wait to be transported to the congregation they’re staying in for the night.

Sign up here!

4. American Cancer Society’s Taste of Hope: Friday, November 30th from 9am-11pm

Taste of Hope presented by the Young Professionals of the American Cancer Society brings local Mid-South chefs and foodies together to celebrate the American Cancer Society’s progress in the fight against cancer. While enjoying the best of Memphis’s culinary scene at a walk around tasting event for an evening of cocktails, music and dancing, a silent auction and more! We need volunteers for set up and break down, night of activities and more!

Sign Up Here!

5. MENTOR Memphis Grizzlies’ New Mentor Training: Saturday, November 17th from 9am-noon

MENTOR Memphis Grizzlies’ Training Institute provides best-in-class training to mentors and mentor programs so that they are equipped to improve student outcomes. This new mentor training starts the process to prepare mentors with the needed tools and skills to mentor and work with the youth within our youth mentoring network. 

Sign Up Here!

6. Volunteer Odyssey’s Pop Up Volunteer Party: Friday, November 30th from 11-1pm

Tis the season to give back to Memphis! Pop in during our Pop Up Volunteer Party on your lunch break and volunteer in as little as 60 seconds. There will be three different volunteer projects to choose from. Fortune tellers will also be on hand to predict where you’ll volunteer in the future.

Sign Up Here!

7. Memphis Botanic Garden’s Campfire Party: Friday, November 16th from 5:30-8:30pm  

Join Memphis Botanic Garden for a cozy campfire and evening activities for kids! Go on a night hike and enjoy making your own s’mores in My Big Backyard. Volunteers will assist with the hike, concessions, and assisting guests!

Sign Up Here!

8. Volunteer Odyssey’s VolunCheers benefitting Operation Broken Silence: Wednesday, December 5th from 6-7:30pm

Join us for our monthly volunteer happy hour at Operation Broken Silence. This is a great opportunity to fit volunteering into your busy schedule as well as meet new people. We’ll have beer, snacks, and a great volunteer project.

Sign Up Here!

9. Catholic Charities Clothes Closet Volunteers: every Monday through Wednesday from 9am-noon

The Catholic Charities Clothes Closet provides free clothing and household items to people in need. We need volunteers to help accept donations, sort clothing, and greet our clients. This is a great opportunity to support your neighbors in Memphis.

Sign Up Here!

10. CodeCrew Hour of Code: Saturday, December 1st from 9:00am-2:00pm

The Hour of Code is CodeCrew’s annual close to a Fall semester of coding. The event, sponsored by FedEx, is open to ALL kids in grades 5-10. They will spend one hour learning coding skills and then we have a featured speaker during a hearty lunch. To successfully execute this event, we are looking for technical and non-technical volunteers. All volunteers will receive a t-shirt and lunch!

Sign Up Here!


At Volunteer Odyssey, our goal is to connect you with your ideal volunteer opportunity, so if none of these strike your fancy, click here to check out hundreds more volunteer opportunities based on your interest, skills, or availability.

If you sign up for one of the above opportunities (or find another one through Volunteer Odyssey), please let me know. I’d love to give a shout-out to you next month.

Who knows? Maybe your experience will encourage others to give back some Memphis lovin’, too.


Author: Holly Whitfield

I write about what’s going on with Memphis music, food, arts, events, sports, people, and culture. Memphians love Elvis and barbeque with a passion that must be seen to be believed, but there is so much more to this place.

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