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Frequently Asked Questions

► I'd love to volunteer! How do I get started?
► How much time do I have to commit each month?
► I am a court-ordered volunteer. How do I find appropriate volunteer opportunities and verify my hours?
► How do I remove myself from a project so that others can take my place?
► I have been waitlisted for a project. Now what?
► When I try to sign up for projects, it says I need to complete an orientation, what does that mean?
► How do I become a Team Leader?
► What's unique about HandsOn San Diego's volunteer program?
► Tell me more about the Kids Korps and HandsOn San Diego partnership.
► How is HandsOn San Diego sustainable?
► Who are the organizations HandsOn San Diego supports?
► I work for a nonprofit and am interested in partnering with HandsOn San Diego, how do I get started?

For New Volunteers

► I'd love to volunteer! How do I get started?

We'd love to have you! How you get started depends on your age.

If you're over 18, create a HandsOn San Diego account, fill in your information, and you're ready to sign up and go! We ask a one-time, tax-deductible $25 activation donation for full access to our Project Calendar, which you give during your registration. If you would prefer to pay by check or cash, please email us at info@handsonsandiego.org to let us know.

If you are 13 to 17 years old, create an account and donate for the $25 LIFETIME membership to gain full access to all of the San Diego volunteer opportunities  on our Project Calendar. Every project has a volunteer minimum age listed so make sure you're old enough to attend before you sign up. If you are not able to sign up due to the minimum age requirement with or without a parent, please have your parent create a family team to sign you up together.

Are you a family looking to volunteer? Click here to see how you can register your family together.

Get started and become a member here.

► How much time do I have to commit each month?

It's entirely up to you!

Our goal is to make volunteering in San Diego easy for everyone. We offer volunteer opportunities with varying commitment levels - you can volunteer as much or as little as you like based on your interest and availability.

► I am a court-ordered volunteer. How do I find appropriate volunteer opportunities and verify my hours?

Please visit our Court-Order Volunteers resource page here for more information. 

We have a $25 mandatory fee for court-ordered volunteers due to the additional staff time it requires. We cannot waive the donation. This is an added service we provide and we want to ensure its sustainability.

For Current Volunteers

► How do I remove myself from a project so that others can take my place?

If you need to remove yourself from a project, please log in, go to the "My Profile" tab, find the project under the "Upcoming Opportunities" section, and click "Remove Me."

► I have been waitlisted for a project. Now what?

When (and if) a space opens up, you will be notified via email. Open spaces will be filled on a first-come, first-served basis so if you are still available and interested for the volunteer opportunity, make sure you login, return to the project sign-up page and claim one of the open spaces.

► When I try to sign up for projects, it says I need to complete an orientation, what does that mean?

If you're seeing a message for an orientation, you may have originally registered as a "Community Member" which is only for disaster volunteers and someone with​ ​only this type of account doesn't have access to sign up for our regular volunteer opportunities. The best way to update your account is to login -> go to "My Profile"-> click "Upgrade My Membership"-> pick Individual​ ​Membership.

We have a $25 one-time, lifetime membership donation that helps sustain our technology and work. We understand that everyone is in different places in life and we respect that for our volunteers. If you need a donation waiver, just email us at info@handsonsandiego.org 

When you’re an active member you will have full access and be able to sign up for any project on our volunteer calendar.

► How do I become a Team Leader?

Team Leaders are the backbone of HandsOn San Diego. When you serve as a Team Leader, you’ll partner with a great local community organization and guide other volunteers through recurring, high-impact volunteer projects. We ask that Team Leaders attend at least 2 HandsOn projects before attending the Team Leader training. Learn more on the Team Leader page and get signed up for the next Team Leader training!

About HandsOn San Diego

► What's unique about HandsOn San Diego's volunteer program?

  • We've done the legwork for you by finding and scheduling high-impact volunteer projects at nonprofits, parks and schools that need your help.
  • You can choose from many projects each month! (We do ask that you only sign up for those projects you intend on attending. Our projects are in high-demand!)
  • HandsOn San Diego projects occur primarily on weekday evenings and weekends to fit in around your busy schedule.
  • You won't be on your own. Our projects are group-based, so you'll be working alongside other volunteers from HandsOn San Diego.
  • Every HandsOn San Diego project will be led by a trained Team Leader, who will serve as your contact in case you have questions before, during and after your project.
  • You do not need to attend any in-person training or orientation before you get started.

► Tell me more about the Kids Korps and HandsOn San Diego partnership.

Kids Korps USA is proud to partner with HandsOn San Diego, representing its youth division. Through this partnership, young people will continue to serve their community in special ways. Children have more to give than many realize – their talents, their time, and most of all their hearts. Through our youth volunteer program, your kids make a significant difference in the lives of others, and though these activities, they grow socially, emotionally, and intellectually. Read more about Kids Korps here.

► How is HandsOn San Diego sustainable?

HandsOn San Diego is currently a volunteer-powered organization with funding from private donors, grants and sponsorships.

We ask all our HandsOn San Diego volunteers for a one-time $25/$50 (for family teams) activation donation (tax-deductible) to gain full access to the many projects on our calendar. Individuals and families may request a donation waiver by selecting the option on the payment page after registering. Group teams such as corporate, friends, troups, clubs, etc. cannot be waived as this is an added feature that we must support and is not necessary to volunteer. 

► Who are the organizations HandsOn San Diego supports?

HandsOn San Diego partners with local nonprofits, schools and parks across San Diego County to set up group-based service projects for volunteers that may meet an ongoing need of an organization or its clients, or they may be one-time transformations of facilities or green spaces.

Find out more about our partner organizations, their missions, and ways to volunteer with them here!

► I work for a nonprofit and am interested in partnering with HandsOn San Diego, how do I get started?

Learn more about partnerships with HandsOn San Diego here