Teens can volunteer with the New York Public Library. Photo: matthew Feeney on Unsplash

Teen Reading Ambassador

We’re bumping this up to the top since the deadline to apply is Aug. 17 The New York Public Library offers a Teen Reading Ambassador program for 10th through 12th graders to help develop job readiness and leadership skills. Students under 18 must have official working papers and be able to be at a library branch by 3 p.m. on weekdays. Learn more here.

Discovery Guide Volunteer Program at the Bronx Zoo

High school- and college-aged youths can apply to be a Discovery Guide at the Bronx Zoo, where they will educate visitors about conservation and wildlife. This volunteer opportunity gives young people experience in teaching, leadership and public speaking. Volunteers also enjoy fun perks like free admission to all Wildlife Conservation Society zoos and aquariums, discounts and more. Applications for Spring 2024 will go live in January, learn more here.

Intergenerational connections between youths and elders

DOROT offers volunteer opportunities for youths to connect with older adults through various programs. There is a virtual option where volunteers can participate in weekly Zoom calls, an after-school program for middle and high school students and more. Learn more here.

Pantry distribution with the Food Bank of New York

Teens aged 14 and up can volunteer with the Food Bank of New York alongside a parent or legal guardian. Volunteers can register online to pack and distribute grocery bags to community members. Learn more here.

Animal lovers can volunteer at the ASPCA. Photo: Madeline Bowen on Unsplash

Volunteer with the ASPCA

Animal lovers aged 16 and up can volunteer with the NYC ASPCA. Volunteers will provide support to the animal shelter by doing laundry, sorting donated goods, cleaning animal enclosures and more. Those interested must watch an information session video and then take a quiz before being invited to fill out the application. Learn more here.

There’s no denying the benefits of volunteering. It can help strengthen familial bonds when done together as a family. Young people who volunteer are more likely to graduate from college, and a study even found a 27% higher odds of employment. 

Nicole Perrino is the founder of Bronxmama.com, a hyperlocal website for Bronx families where she use her influence to celebrate the beauty that the Bronx has to offer. In addition to her role at Bronxmama,...

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