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

Posted by Holly Whitfield | December 3rd 2018 2778 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.

Here are ten ideas for December 2018.

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

VolunCheers, Volunteer Odyssey’s monthly volunteer happy hour, is an easy way to fit volunteering into your busy schedule while also meeting new people. Join us at Operation Broken Silence on December 5th from 6-7:30pm where we will be helping write thank you notes to Operation Broken Silence supporters. Free beer and snacks will be provided.

Sign Up Here!

2. Memphis Botanic Garden’s Holiday Wonders at the Garden: Thursday through Sunday during the month of December from 4:30-8:45pm

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. Families and friends gather around firepits on the patio, sipping hot cocoa and roasting marshmallows for s’mores. 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.

Sign Up Here!

3. Volunteer Odyssey’s Pop Up Volunteer Party: Friday, December 14th from 11am-1pm

Give back this holiday season at Volunteer Odyssey’s Pop Up Party. At this event, there will be 3 volunteer projects benefitting 3 different nonprofits. Each project can be completed in as little 60 seconds making this the perfect opportunity to give back on your lunch break. There will also be a volunteer fortune teller to predict where you’ll volunteer in the future and an opportunity to experience a volunteer opportunity in virtual reality.

Sign Up Here!

4. YMCA of Memphis & The Mid-South’s Y-CAP Gift Wrapping Event: Tuesday, December 11th from 5-7pm

The Y is looking for volunteers to help assemble holiday food baskets and wrap Christmas presents for the kids and families of Y-CAP.  The YMCA Community Action Program (Y-CAP) is an early intervention/prevention program that works with youth and families to improve behavior and academic performance within in their homes, schools and communities.

Sign Up Here!

5. Catholic Charities of West Tennessee’s Gift for God’s Children: Distribution Days: Tuesday, December 18th– Thursday, December 20th from 9am-3pm

Nearly one in four Memphians live in poverty, and Catholic Charities of West Tennessee responds to that need every Christmas with our Gifts for God’s Children program. By distributing donated gifts and necessities, we share the joy of the season with those most in need in our community. On these distribution days, join Santa and Mrs. Claus in handing out gifts that have been sorted and selected for each family!

Sign Up Here!

6. Shelby Farms Park’s BuffaGlo Fun Run: Saturday, December 29th from 4:30-8:00pm

Join Shelby Farms as they introduce a new race to the Park! This race takes participants around the Starry Nights light show. We will need volunteers to help with water, hot chocolate, parking and monitoring the course.

Sign Up Here!

7. Jacob’s Well’s Christmas Dinner: Saturday, December 15th from 3-8:00pm



In celebration of Christmas, we will host a magnificent meal for all who are hungry. Our Clothes Closet will also be open, and the Jacob’s Well band & special musical guests will lead us in carols starting at 6:00p.m. along with a Christmas message and presentation from our Kids Community. Volunteers can arrive any time between 3:00-5:00 to help with setup, preparation, and serving. Then we’ll need lots of help cleaning up for those who can stay as late as 8:00p.m. This is a great activity for the whole family! 

Sign Up Here!

8. Room In the Inn’s Evening Hospitality at Carpenter’s House: daily from 4:15-6pm  

Help Room In the Inn house homeless guests during the winter months. Each night when guests arrive, volunteers are needed to help greet them, serve coffee, and provide fellowship. Room in the Inn is open 7 nights a week all winter long- including holidays- so this is a great way to give back with your family during the holiday season.

Sign Up Here!

9. Shelby Farms Park’s Starry Nights: daily until December 28th from 5-10pm

Starry Nights is the largest holiday light show and festival in the Mid-South. 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. Hot chocolate guaranteed! This is a great opportunity for families, groups and individuals to serve!

Sign Up Here!

10. Gift Wrapping with Literacy Mid-South: multiple dates and times in December



Join Literacy Mid-South at Novel. Bookstore or Barnes and Noble Bookstore Wolfchase and help us build a more literate Mid-South…one gift at a time! We will be gift wrapping presents for Barnes and Noble customers throughout the week. All gift-wrapping services are free, and all tips help support Literacy Mid-South’s work in the community!

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.

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