Places to Volunteer in Cleveland

JVN offers a variety of meaningful hands-on and virtual volunteer opportunities for individuals, families, teens, and other groups. Our opportunities match a volunteer’s interest to help with a community need that is personally meaningful. This individualized approach assures the best experience for volunteers and connects them directly to the mitzvah of tikkun olam, (repairing the world). For more information about these volunteer opportunities contact Susan Hyman, JVN Director.

Feeding the Hungry

(Notayn lechem l’areivim)

Bishop Cosgrove Center

1736 Superior Ave., Cleveland, OH 44114
View their website

Individual
Group
Hands-On
Teen

The Bishop William M. Cosgrove Center, operated by Catholic Charities Health and Human Services since 1994, is the largest day drop-in center in the Cleveland community serving hundreds of individuals who are homeless or who are considered working poor. The Center provides basic needs for individuals so they can focus on finding a job, attending a school or finding a home.

Food Preparation and Serving:
Preparing and serving breakfast/lunch, stocking pantry shelves or packing food bags.

Gardening and Landscaping:
Plant flowers and general Spring Clean-Up

Specialized Services:
Resume writing or job assistance


Cleveland Foodbank

15500 South Waterloo Rd., Cleveland OH 44114
View their website

Individual
Family*
Group
Hands-On
Teen

The Cleveland Foodbank supplies a majority of the food used in local hot meal Sites, shelters, and food pantries. The Foodbank also provides food to child care Centers, group homes and programs for the elderly working closely with other Northeast Ohio hunger relief organizations.

Sort and Repack:
Organize and pack up nonperishable food that is later distributed to local food pantries, soup kitchens and shelters Food Prep: Prepare hot meals in the “Community Kitchen” that are distributed at local agencies for children at-risk for hunger during the summer months.

* - Must be over 12 years of age to volunteer


RIAS Kosher Food Bank

2004 S. Green Rd., South Euclid, OH 44121
View their website

Individual
Family
Group
Hands-On
Teen

The Semach Sedek Russian Immigrant Aid Society Kosher Food Bank was established in 1978 by Rabbi & Mrs. Zalman Kazen as a humanitarian and social service program helping immigrants and needy people. This Food Bank is the Kosher department of the Cleveland Foodbank and continues to serve all needy people regardless of race or religion.

Sort, Pack and/or Deliver:
Help sort and pack food, deliver food packages to senior apartment complexes, provide friendly home visits when delivering food to shut-ins; organize and pack up nonperishable food that is later distributed to individuals in need in the Jewish and general Cleveland community.


St. Augustine Hunger Center

2486 14th St., Cleveland, OH 44113
View their website

Individual
Group
Hands-On

St. Augustine Hunger Center is an outgrowth of the ministry and service of St. Augustine Church and is a response to the human need having always welcomed the impoverished immigrant community. It not only provides meals but addresses other needs of the poor and homeless such as food, clothing, emergency funding for rent and utilities

Soup Kitchen:
Serve hot lunches to the homeless


WSEM Food Centers

Brookside Food Center 3802 Pearl Rd., Cleveland, OH 44109
Community Corner Food Center 8302 Detroit Ave., Cleveland, OH 44109
Near West Food Center 3610 Bridge Ave., Cleveland, OH 44113
View their website

Individual
Group
Hands-On
Teen

WSEM Food Centers under the auspices of The Centers for Families and Children are one of the largest food distributors to families in need on Cleveland’s West Side working to fight hunger and provide resources to allow individuals and families to break out of poverty.

Food pantry:
Stock food shelves, bag food and assist family members to their cars

Protecting the Environment

(Notayn lechem l’areivim)

Cleveland Metroparks with YouthAbility*

South Chagrin Reservation; located in Bentleyville, Solon & Moreland Hills
View their website

Family
Group
Hands-On
Teen

Cleveland Metroparks conserves significant natural resources and enhances people's lives by providing safe, high-quality outdoor education, recreation, and zoological opportunities.

Trailblazing:
Clear, weed and garden with YouthAbility

* YouthAbility, a JFSA group of disabled and at risk youth has “adopted a trail” and would welcome children to join them as they work to preserve our environment.


Hebrew Cultural Gardens

1160 East Blvd., Cleveland, OH 44113
View their website

Family
Group
Hands-On
Teen

Begun in 1916, the Hebrew Cultural Garden is one of a collection of 24 gardens that visually represents the different ethnic and community groups that make up Greater Cleveland’s diversity.

Gardening and Clean-Up:
Bring gardening gloves and tools to help weed, plant annuals and turn over planting beds. General Spring clean-up of the garden.


Holden Arboretum

9500 Sperry Rd., Kirkland, OH 44094
View their website

Individual
Family
Group
Hands-On
Teen

The Holden Arboretum is an outdoor living museum that promotes the beauty and importance of trees and other woody plants to create sustainable and healthy communities in the Great Lakes region and beyond. The Holden Arboretum envisions a Northeast Ohio in which trees, forests, and gardens provide maximum ecological and social benefits to the region’s people and communities.

Gardening & Land Stewardship:
Planting, cleaning beds, raking, mulching and pulling invasive plant species.


Shaker Nature Center

10415 Euclid Ave., Cleveland, OH 44106
View their website

Family
Group
Hands-On
Teen

The Nature Center at Shaker Lakes, founded in 1966 as a grassroots community effort to preserve the Shaker Parklands from becoming a freeway connecting Cleveland’s East Side to downtown, conserves a natural area, connects people with nature and inspires environmental stewardship.

Gardening & Trailblazing:
Collect seeds, pull ivy and plant in the marsh and prairie.


Trinity Urban Farm

E. 35th St. and Cedar Rd., Cleveland, OH 44115
View their website

Family
Group
Hands-On
Teen

Under the auspices of Trinity Cathedral, the Urban Farm harvests hundreds of pounds of food each week during the growing season for meals served to those in need.

Planting and Harvesting:
Plant, weigh produce, mow, weed, trim and composting

Gardening:
Create a new flowerbed or weed

Caring for the Sick

(Bikur Cholim)

Cleveland Clinic – Hospice

9500 Euclid Ave., Cleveland, OH 44195
View their website

Hands-On
Individual

The mission of Cleveland Clinic is to provide better care of the sick, investigation into their problems, and further education of those who serve.

The goal of the Hospice Program is to assist patients and their families to prepare physically, spiritually and emotionally for the end of life.

Friendly Visitor:
Provide companionship, offer a helping hand and respite for the family and caregivers in a home setting.


MedWish

1160 East Blvd., Cleveland, OH 44113
View their website

Family
Group
Hands-On
Teen
Virtual

MedWish International is a not-for-profit organization committed to repurposing medical supplies and equiptment discarded by the healthcare industry with the objective of providing humanitarian aid in developing countries to save lives and reduce waste to save our environment.

Sort and Pack:
Inventory, organize and pack up medical supplies that is distributed to those in need around the world

Virtual:
Collect “wish list” items such as medical supplies and hygiene products: raise money to sponsor a pallet or container of supplies being sent out of the country


Montefiore – Vinney Hospice and Palliative Care

One David N. Myers Pkwy., Beachwood, OH 44122
View their website

Individual
Hands-On

Guided by Jewish values, Montefiore is dedicated to a standard of excellence and personalized care, in order that people may continue to live their lives with dignity and security and as independently as they are able. Montefiore offers a full range of healthcare services including post-hospital and long-term care, home health care, memory care, outpatient therapies and hospice & palliative services.

Friendly Visitor:
Work directly with hospice patients and families to offer comfort and support in private homes, at Montefiore and in other healthcare and assisted living facilities.


Ronald McDonald House of Cleveland

10415 Euclid Ave., Cleveland, OH 44106
View their website

Family
Group
Hands-On
Individual
Teen
Virtual

Ronald McDonald House® of Cleveland, Inc. supports families whose children receive treatment at area medical centers by providing a home-like environment and essential resources and services.

Host a Meal:
Donate or serve a catered meal or cook and serve a meal to families staying at the Ronald McDonald House.

Gardening and Landscaping:
Plant flowers and/or general Spring Clean-Up


The Free Clinic

12201 Euclid Ave., Cleveland, OH 44106
View their website

Hands-On
Individual

The Free Medical Clinic of Greater Cleveland (‘The Free Clinic”) provides quality health care and related services free of charge to those who might otherwise go without care, and advocates for policy changes that make health care available to all.

Patient Registration and Advocacy:
Work one-on-one with patients to complete required paperwork to receive free prescriptions, assist in fortifying relationships with local legislators for expanded external affairs impact


University Hospital – Hospice

11110 Euclid Ave., Cleveland, OH 44106
View their website

Hands-On
Individual

University Hospitals, one of the nation’s leading health care systems, provices high quality, patient-centered medical care at locations throughout Northeast Ohio.

Friendly Visitor:
Provide companionship, offer a helping hand and respite for the family and caregivers in a home setting.

Education – Learn, Teach & Observe

(V’Shinantam L’Vanecha)

Jewish Federation of Cleveland – Public Education Initiative (PEI)

Jewish Federation, Mandel Bldg., 25701 Science Park Dr., Cleveland, OH 44122
View their website

Hands-On
Individual
Teen

For over a century, the Jewish Federation of Cleveland has been raising funds and creating innovative and effective programs to address social, health and educational issues in Cleveland, in Israel and worldwide.

The Public Education Initiative (PEI), is a program of the Federation’s Jewish Volunteer Network (JVN) to further the mission of tikkun olam (healing the world). PEI, which now provides tutoring at eight (8) Cleveland schools, began in 1999 to create more opportunities for members of the Jewish community to become involved in the life of Cleveland.

Tutor:
Help build reading skills, offer homework help, and develop one to one relationships with students during school hours

Painting:
Interior and exterior areas in their new facility


Kids in Need Resource Center

3651 Perkins Ave. Suite 1 C, Cleveland, OH 44114
View their website

Family
Group
Hands-On
Individual
Teen
Virtual

Cleveland Kids In Need is a local, independent non-profit that helps to ensure that every child is prepared to learn and succeed by providing free school supplies to teachers of the students who are most in need.

Unpack and Sort:
Stock and restock merchandise

Process “Purchases”:
Help teachers check-in and check-out as they shop for free supplies

Playground Clean-Up:
Monthly clean-up includes disinfecting toys

Virtual:
Conduct a school supply drive to help keep the Resource Center’s shelves filled

Poverty

(Hiddur P'nai Zaken)

Providence House

2050 E. 32nd St., Cleveland, OH 44113
View their website

Group
Hands-On
Individual
Virtual

Providence House is one of the nation's oldest operating crisis nurseries among the 70+ in operation in the US and Canada today offering emergency shelter and care to children who are actively at risk for abuse and neglect due to family crisis.

Landscaping:
Spring Clean-up of the property

Painting:
Interior and exterior areas in their new facility

Playground Clean-Up:
Monthly clean-up includes disinfecting toys

Other:
Assistance at a Special Event, includes set-up, working event and clean-up Virtual: Collect diapers, wipes, clothing, shoes, hygiene products


SC4K (Shoes and Coats for Kids)

Woodland Data Center, 4966 Woodland Avenue, Cleveland, OH 44104
View their website

Family
Group
Hands-On
Teen
Virtual

Shoes and Clothes for Kids is the only non-profit organization in Greater Cleveland providing new shoes and clothes at no charge throughout the year to thousands of children in need. Through a network of 35 distribution partners, SC4K positively impacts the lives of area children by giving them the self-esteem and confidence that comes from having brand new shoes and clothes.

Sort and Pack:
Count inventory, sort and pack new clothing into boxes for distribution

Virtual:
Collect shoes and clothing for the Kids Back to School Campaign; collect donations to purchase shoes or clothing gift cards

Other: Assistance at a Special Event, includes set-up, working event and clean-up


The City Mission

5310 Carnegie Ave., Cleveland, OH 44103
View their website

Family
Group
Hands-On
Teen
Virtual

The City Mission’s provides a continuum of care that begins at each individual’s point of immediate need and moves him or her along, with appropriate resources, from crisis through recovery to integration back into family and society.

Virtual:
Fill a Hope Tote (collect hygiene items, clothing, school supplies) that will be distributed to homeless families in need.


YWCA – NIA (Nurturing Independence and Aspirations) Program

4019 Prospect Ave., Cleveland, OH 44103
View their website

Group
Hands-On

YWCA Greater Cleveland is a unique and vital community resource in Northeast Ohio committed to eliminating racism and empowering women. It is widely recognized as a thought leader on the issues of racial equity and the advancement of women. The NIA program – Nurturing Independence and Aspirations – is a Trauma-Informed System of Care model focused on Permanence, education, employment, housing, physical and mental health, and personal and Community engagement. It responds to the special needs of young adults, ages 14 to 24 years of age, transitioning out of failing systems, such as foster care.

Renovate Living Area:
Paint, clean, organize an apartment for a new NIA family moving

Caring for those with Special Needs

(Ohev Et Ha'briyot)

Cleveland Metroparks with YouthAbility*

South Chagrin Reservation, Located in Bentleyville, Solon & Moreland Hills
View their website

Family
Group
Hands-On
Teen

Cleveland Metroparks conserves significant natural resources and enhances people's lives by providing safe, high-quality outdoor education, recreation, and zoological opportunities.

*YouthAbility, a JFSA group of disabled and at risk youth has “adopted a trail” and would welcome children to join them as they work to preserve our environment.

Trailblazing:
Clear, weed and garden with YouthAbility


Cleveland Sight Center

1909 E. 101st St., Cleveland, OH 44106
View their website

Family
Group
Hands-On
Individual
Teen
Virtual

Since 1906 Cleveland Sight Center has provided rehabilitation services for all northeast Ohio residents of any age who are blind or visually impaired.

Engage with clients: Give sight tests to Pre-School children, read a book, create a craft, play a game of beep* baseball or take a client on a tandem bike ride. Ages from pre-school – adults.

*The adaptive version of America’s favorite pastime for the blind, visually impaired and legally blind

Other: Assistance at a Special Event, includes set-up, working event and clean-up

Virtual: Make templates for the Early Childhood Program


Hattie Larlham

9772 Diagonal Rd., Mantua, OH 44255
View their website

Family
Group
Hands-On
Individual
Teen
Virtual

For more than 50 years, Hattie Larlham remains committed to the care of children and adults with developmental disabilities. Hattie Larlham provides services of the highest quality, inspiring people with disabilities and their families to dream and achieve.

Engage with clients: Have a dance, play games, create crafts or be a fieldtrip volunteer Specially designed projects are available for groups upon request

Landscaping and Home Improvement: General Spring Clean-Up of the park area, painting and seasonal cleaning for supported living homes

Virtual Experience: Birthday card buddy, clothing collection

Other: Assistance at a Special Event, includes set-up, working event and clean-up


Jewish Family Service Association (JFSA)

The Drost Family Center, 24075 Commerce Park Rd., Beachwood, OH 44122
View their website

Family
Group
Hands-On
Individual
Teen
Virtual

Jewish Family Service Association of Cleveland (JFSA) is a contemporary behavioral and health organization which has served the greater Cleveland community for over 135 years. JFSA provides high quality, professional services regardless of religious affiliation or financial status.

Friendly Visitor – Adopt a Community Living Site: Provide companionship, celebrate the holidays, help with clean-up/landscaping with 4-6 adults with disabilities as they learn life skills and relationship building

Host a Special Event: Hold a dance, ice cream party or crafts for MRDD clients or homebound senior adults

Virtual Experience: Collect hygiene products, gift cards, bus passes, gas cards, paper or cleaning supplies for clients in need


Juvenile Detention Center

Cuyahoga County Juvenile Justice Center, 9300 Quincy Ave., Cleveland, OH 44106
View their website

Hands-On
Individual

The Cuyahoga County Juvenile Detention Center is the oldest detention center for youth in the United States who are awaiting sentencing. Approximately 150 youth live at this facility at any given time.

Mentor or Group Activity Leader: Be a role model for a teen or lead a discussion group on current events, book review, gardening, resume writing, etc.

Respect for the Elderly

(Hiddur "Pnai Zaken)

Homewood Rockefeller Gardens(PEI)

3151 Mayfield Rd., Cleveland Heights, OH 44118
View their website

Family
Group
Hands-On
Individual
Teen

Homewood Rockefeller Gardens offers three “living” options for seniors – Personalized Assisted Living, early to mid Alzheimer’s and Dementia and mid to late Alzheimer’s and Dementia. Residents benefit from medication administration and support with the activities of daily living.

Friendly Visitors: Provide Jewish residents with on-going Jewish experiential activities as well as Jewish holiday celebrations


Jewish Family Service Association (JFSA) – TOV Program

The Drost Family Center, 24075 Commerce Park Rd., Beachwood, OH 44122
View their website

Family
Group
Hands-On
Individual

Jewish Family Service Association of Cleveland (JFSA) is a contemporary behavioral and health organization which has served the greater Cleveland community for over 135 years. JFSA provides high quality, professional services regardless of religious affiliation or financial status.

TOV Friendly Visitor – Homebound Holocaust Survivors:
Call or visit to provide companionship and help alleviate loneliness. Run errands, celebrated holidays and show compassion for this frail population


Mandel JCC – Senior Lunch Plus Program

Warrensville Community Apartments, 1500 Warrensville Center Rd., Cleveland Heights, OH 44118
View their website

Family
Group
Hands-On
Individual
Teen

The Mandel Jewish Community Center of Cleveland builds and strengthens Cleveland's entire Jewish Community by providing exceptional programs and services that enhance Jewish continuity and Jewish identity in order to perpetuate Jewish values.

The Lunch Plus Program for those over 60 years of age, runs six days/week and offers participants a hot, nutritious lunch, activities such as crafts, exercise, bingo, entertainment and trips.

Engage with clients:
Play games, call bingo, lead groups, give presentations and interact and kibitz with clients


Menorah Park for Senior Living

27100 Cedar Rd., Beachwood, OH 44122
View their website

Family
Group
Hands-On
Individual
Teen

Menorah Park for Senior Living enriches the lives of seniors and those requiring specialized high-quality health care through direct services, research and education. Menorah Park is dedicated to providing an atmosphere of respect, dignity and caring within a framework of traditional Jewish values.

Friendly Visitors:
Put on a Talent Show, host an ice cream party, call bingo, make a craft project, make wheelchair/walker bags to give to residents


Montefiore

One David N. Myers Pkwy., Beachwood, OH 44122
View their website

Family
Group
Hands-On
Individual

Guided by Jewish values, Montefiore is dedicated to a standard of excellence and personalized care, in order that people may continue to live their lives with dignity and security and as independently as they are able. Montefiore offers a full range of healthcare services including post-hospital and long-term care, home health care, memory care, outpatient therapies and hospice & palliative services.

Interact with Bubbies & Zaydees:
“Adopt” a grandparent, host an ice cream party, call bingo, make a craft project, create wheelchair/walker bags to give to residents


The Waterford at Richmond Heights

261 Richmond Rd., Richmond Heights, OH 44143
View their website

Family
Group
Hands-On
Individual
Teen

Residents enjoy the comforts of home, remain as self-reliant as possible and appreciate assistance with the activities of daily life

Friendly Visitors:
Provide Jewish residents with on-going Jewish experiential activities as well as Jewish holiday celebrations

Loving One's Neighbor

(V'Ahavta L'Rayacha)

Bellefaire JCB

One Pollack Circle, 22001 Fairmount Blvd., Shaker Heights, OH 44118
View their website

Family
Group
Teen
Virtual

Bellefaire JCB serves children, families and young adults throughout Cleveland, Northeast Ohio and, through its residential and autism treatment programs.

Virtual:
Collect “wish list” items such car or train sets, puzzles, bead kits, board games and books for group home residents


Boys & Girls Club

6114 Broadway Ave., Cleveland, OH 44127
View their website

Family
Group
Hands-On
Individual
Teen
Virtual

The Boys & Girls Club inspires and enables young people in need to reach their full potential as productive, responsible citizens at 5 sites in the Cleveland area. Many of the children/teens served come from unstable home environments. Interaction between clients and volunteers who are positive role models is greatly beneficial.

Engage with Children/Teens:
Play games, sports, cook or do a craft project

Gardening and Landscaping:
Plant flowers and general Spring Clean-Up

Painting:
Interior and exterior at one of their locations

Virtual/Other:
Clothing and/or Food Collection or Book Drive


JWB – Jewish Chaplains Council

JCC Association, 520 8th Avenue, New York, NY 10018
View their website

Family
Group
Hands-On
Teen

JWB Jewish Chaplains Council is a service of the JCC Association, which provides for the religious, educational, and morale needs of Jewish men and women in the U.S. Armed Forces.

Virtual: Collect “wish list” items and send packages; send cards and letters; adopt a service member and correspond regularly with our servicemen and women

Caring for Animals

(T'za'ar Ba'alei Chaymim)

Cleveland Animal Protective League

1729 Willey Avenue, Cleveland, OH 44113
View their website

Family
Group
Teen
Virtual

The Cleveland Animal Protective League’s mission is to foster compassion And end animal suffering. We are committed to 100% placement of adoptable Animals and envision a time when every friendly, healthy, homeless animal in our community can be cared for until a new family is found.

Virtual: Bake and donate dog biscuits for our hungry, furry animal friends

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