Volunteer Opportunities

Ongoing Volunteer Programs

Introducing Teens in Action in 2019!

This summer we are piloting opportunities for older teens (those going into grades, 10, 11, or 12). Contact Sabrina Lambrecht if you would like to get involved or to learn more.

Opportunities to volunteer & intern with CARE: Career Awareness Related Experience

CARE has several opportunities related to human resources, education, social media, marketing and evaluation. Read more   Volunteers must be 18 years of age and can choose their hours!

Neighborhood Watch Board of Directors

Columbia Neighborhood Watch has openings on the volunteer Board of Directors and is looking for community minded individuals that would like to serve.

The MISSION of Columbia Neighborhood Watch is to inform, train and encourage residents to work together to establish neighborhood watch programs with the goal of reducing crime.  It promotes community involvement in fighting crime by connecting people, information and ideas through our website, annual events and training sessions.

If you are interested in being considered for the Board please email col.neighwatch@gmail.com.

Special Olympics 

Volunteer with Special Olympics through Columbia Parks & Recreation!  Experience or sport specific knowledge is not required. Volunteers are needed to assist with the following positions:


  • When: Wednesday evenings beginning July 17th
  • Time: 6-7pm
  • Location: Cosmo Park Tennis Courts@1615 Business Loop 70 W

  • When: Wednesday evenings beginning July 24th
  • Time: 6-7pm
  • Location: Cosmo Park Bocce Courts@1615 Business Loop 70 W

  • When: Thursday evenings beginning July 11th
  • Time: 6-7pm or 6-8pm depending on experience
  • Location: LA Nickell Golf Course@1800 Parkside Dr.                              

Get started by contacting Jessica Sida. Commitment to the entire season is required for most sports. A Class A Application on file is required for all Special Olympics volunteers. 

CARP Projects

All projects will be held from 8:30-10:30 a.m.  and are planned for volunteers who have completed the CARP (Columbia Aquatic Restoration Project) class.  

  • Saturday, August 31-Perry Phillips Lake-5050 Bristol Lake Pkwy
  • Saturday, September 14-Stephens Lake Park-2001 E Broadway
  • Saturday, September 28-Smiley Lane Park-400 Smiley Lane
  • Saturday, October 12-3M Wetlands site along the MKT 

Family Fun Fest 

Every 3rd Wednesday from May-September from 5:45-8:15 p.m. at Cosmo Park-1615 Business Loop 70 W. Entertainment for families including music, food trucks, live performances, and art activities. Volunteers will assist with set up, tear down, and facilitate games and activities designed for children. Self schedule or contact Sabrina Lambrecht for more information. 

Wednesday, August 21 (Around the World) THIS OPPORTUNITY IS FILLED-THANK YOU!

Wednesday, September 18 (Creative Kids) THIS OPPORTUNITY IS FILLED-THANK YOU!

Smaller Ballers

Sundays, August 4-September 8: 4 & 5 year old’s will meet from 1:00-2:00 p.m., 6 & 7 year old’s will meet from 2:20-3:20 p.m.

The Parks and Recreation Department is looking for volunteer youth basketball coaches for the Tykes Basketball Program. Volunteers will help teach young boys and girls the fundamentals of the game. Volunteers will meet at the Armory Sports & Community Recreation Center located at 701 East Ash St.  Contact Sabrina Lambrecht for more information. 

Respite Care Event for Foster Families

5:00-9:00 p.m.-ARC-1701 W. Ash. Volunteers will interact and supervise kids. Dinner is served at 6 p.m., followed by a  swim in the ARC pool (bring your swimsuit), and a movie or gym activity the last hour of the program. Volunteers must be 16 years of age and may be subject to a background screening. Please consider committing to a minimum of two events. 

Friday, September 6

Friday, October 11

Friday, November 8

Recycling Ambassadors Volunteer Training

Tuesday, September 17, 6:00pm-8:00pm at the ARC, 1701 W. Ash St. Recycling Ambassadors are instrumental in helping to educate the community about the importance of waste reduction, proper recycling and the power everyone has to take steps toward a more sustainable community. Trainees are asked to give 12 hours of service promoting recycling and waste reduction. Opportunities include staffing education booths, giving presentations, community outreach projects and assisting with waste audits and education events. opens in a new windowRegister here. For more information contact Jody Cook at  opens in a new windowjody.cook@CoMo.gov or 573-874-6271

Youth Cross Country Coaches

Tues/Thurs & Saturday’s, August 27-mid November: 6-14 year old’s will meet Tuesday’s & Thursday’s  from 6-7 p.m. & Saturday’s 10-11 a.m. 

The Community Recreation Department is looking for volunteer youth cross country coaches!  Volunteers will help teach young boys and girls interested in the sport. Based at the Armory Sports & Community Recreation Center located at 701 East Ash St.  Practices takes place at local parks. Contact Sabrina Lambrecht for more information. 

Heritage Festival 

The Heritage Festival will be held Saturday, September 21 and Sunday, September 22 at Nifong Park-2900 E Nifong Blvd.  Volunteers assist with parking and engaging children and families in craft activities and games at the children’s activity area. This is a great opportunity for group volunteering.  Shifts vary from 9:30 a.m.-5:15 p.m. each day.   Self schedule or contact Sabrina Lambrecht for more information. 

Park Patrol Training

Thursday, September 26 – 6-7:30 p.m.  City Hall, 701 E. Broadway, Conference Room 1C.  Park Patrol volunteers help keep our parks and trails safe and good repair. Volunteers are asked to share at least four hours each month April to October on City of Columbia parks and trails and can volunteer while they are enjoying the outdoors! Volunteers must be 18 years of age and agree to a background screening. 

Fire Prevention Week Kickoff

Sunday, October 6-11 a.m.-3 p.m. at Columbia Mall-2300 Bernadette Dr. Volunteers will assist staff with games, food, inflatables, and general event tasks. Self schedule or contact Sabrina Lambrecht for more information. 

Hinkson Clean Sweep

Saturday, October 19th from 10:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m.: This annual litter event focuses on the cleanup of waterways throughout Columbia. Individuals and groups of all types and ages are welcome. Volunteers are welcome to choose their location. The five locations are as follows:

Flat Branch Park: Meet at the playground off of Elm Street
Grindstone Nature Area: Meet at the parking lot at 2011 Old 63 S.
MLK Gardens trail head: Meet in the trail head parking lot, 800 Stadium Blvd
Moon Valley Road: Meet at the Stephens Lake Building, 2100 East Broadway
MU Hinkson Field: Meet at Hinkson Field on Recreation Drive off of Mick Deaver Drive

A Dozen Ways to Be Healthy and 12345 Fit-Tastic!

This class will begin on October 23 and will be held on Wednesday nights from 5:30-7:30 until November 26. Volunteers will be helping to implement the “A Dozen Way to Be Healthy” program with children ages 2-5. This program will focus on helping kids learn healthy eating habits, participate in food demonstrations and participate in crafts/physical activity, while their parents participate in the Cooking Matters class. Please commit to at least 3 classes. All classes will be held at Columbia/Boone County Department of Public Health and Human Services-1005 W Worley St. Contact Laura McCullough for more information. 

Household Hazardous Waste Collection 

Volunteers are needed to assist with traffic and direction and paint consolidation. Shifts are available 8:00 a.m.-10:00 a.m. and 10:00 a.m.-12:00 p.m.  Household Hazardous Waste is located at 1313 Lakeview. This is an ongoing opportunity the 1st and 3rd Saturday of the month April through November. Self schedule or contact Jody Cook for more information. 

 Household Hazardous Waste Schedule

  • September 7  Cancelled
  • September 21
  • October 
  • October 19
  • November 2
  • November 16

Crawdads Stream Team  & ECO Cleanups

Volunteers are instrumental to keeping Columbia’s streets, parks and streams clean. There are multiple opportunities for individuals and groups to help. Self schedule for any of the following, or contact Jody Cook or call 573-874-6271 for more information.  These litter events are leader lead with gloves, bags and safety vests provided. Drop ins are always welcome!      

Sept. 14 9 a.m.-11 a.m. Big Bear Ct
Sept. 21 8 a.m. – 12 p.m. Meet at Grace Bible Church, 601 Blue Ridge Rd for cleanup of N. Providence, Garth and Blue Ridge
Oct. 19 10 a.m. – 12 p.m. Five Sites: Flat Branch Park (meet at the playground off of Elm Street), MLK Gardens trail head (800 Stadium), Moon Valley Rd (meet at 2100 East Broadway Stephens Lake Building), MU Hinkson Field (meet at Hinkson Field on Recreation Dr off of Mick Deaver Dr),  Grindstone Nature Area (meet at the parking lot at 2011 Old 83 S)
Nov. 9 10 a.m. – 12 p.m. East Campus Neighborhood, meet at the corner of Wilson and Lee St
Dec. 14 10 a.m. – 12 p.m. Smiley Ln & N. Providence, meet on Arctic Wolf Ct

Litter Event Leaders help us engage  other volunteers in caring for our environment!   Tasks include bringing supplies (provided by the City), checking in volunteers, providing basic instructions, and helping them have a great cleanup!  

Would you like to teach a course or start a program?

Do you have a talent, skill or passion that you would love to share with other Columbians? There are opportunities with our existing programs. But it is very possible that a program can be built around your abilities, and for the
population in which you would like to serve. Click here to learn more!

 Ongoing Parks and Recreation Volunteer Opportunities Available!

  • Lil’ Lady Bulldogs Dance and Cheer Instructors wanted! Contact Mary Dewey to volunteer or call 573-817-5077 for more information.                   
  • We are looking for guitar instructors!! Contact Mary Dewey to volunteer or call 573-817-5077 for more information.
  • Flag Line Instructors needed! Would like to meet on Thursday’s from 5:00-6:00 p.m. Volunteer will instruct young women in flag routines, organize routines and secure venues for performances. Contact Mary Dewey for more information. 
  • Foreign Language Instructors: Share your foreign language skills  with children and/or adults – 3 program choices available, great opportunity to change someone’s life! Contact Mary Dewey to volunteer or call 573-817-5077 for more information. This activity will continue again in the fall.  You do not have to be an expert, just willing to teach (instructional materials are provided) and confident.

Student/Internship/Service Learning projects: We have a variety of semester (or longer!) projects ideal for students including sidewalk snow removal and recycling education. Contact us to learn more!

Board & Commission Openings :There are many great ways to serve our City!  

Updated: 8-20-19