Meaningful connections. Personal growth. Endorse a community. Catch the spirit of giving with organizations that make an impact. Your attendees can make a difference. You can leave a lasting impression on the city.

Contact Paulette Lester for more opportunities:

Paulette Lester

Director of Convention Services

Animal Rescue League of Iowa

5452 NE 22nd Street, Des Moines, IA 50313 (515) 262-9503 -

Mission: To promote animal welfare, strengthen the human-animal bond, and prevent the overpopulation of pets.

See the ARL website for details on how you can help.


Big Brothers Big Sisters of Central Iowa 

9051 Swanson Blvd., Clive, IA 50325 (515) 288-9025 -;

Mission: To help children reach their potential through professionally supported one-to-one relationships with measurable impact.

Mentors needed. Event volunteer opportunities available. Catch Big Brothers Big Sisters of Central Iowa. An organization with heart. Contact the Resource Development Team for more information.


Bureau of Refugee Services

800-362-2780 or 515-875-5600

Mission: Helping refugees get acclimated to a new culture and a new community.


Volunteer -- Helping refugees get acclimated to a new culture and a new community is a very big task. While we are the Bureau work very hard to make this transition as easy as possible for refugees, we could not do it without the help of the community at large.  Volunteers can assist with transportation, setting up apartments, shopping for basic essentials, sorting and organizing donated items, helping with the language lab, assisting in the office and a variety of other tasks.  Here are some way you can help:

  • ESL Helper - Be able to speak proper, grammatical English and engage in dialogue with the student so they can better understand how to converse in our language. Location: Assessment Center in our office.

  • Metro Bus System Helper - Be able to physically show the clients how to read the bus schedule with attention to the times, the location to get on the bus from their home, how to get off where they need to get off, how to transfer, etc.You would ride the bus with them, as well, to show them how to do this.


Central Iowa Shelter & Services

1420 Mulberry Street, Des Moines, IA 50309 (515) 284-5719


Mission: To provide free shelter and meals to homeless adults regardless of physical or emotional conditions, and to facilitate their move toward self-sufficiency

Some of the simplest ways are to collect our top need items and bring them to the center or help serve lunch. Volunteers can help on projects, committees or if you’re only able to offer a day of service, we always have things to do and are grateful for your time. 

Volunteer Information: 

(515) 564-5752


Children's Cancer Connection

2708 Grand Ave, Des Moines, IA 50312 (515) 243-6239 -;

Mission: We enhance the quality of life for children and families affected by childhood cancer by providing programs for education, recreation and support.

Courage Store: Donate toys to the "Courage Store."  Oncology patients select a toy after reaching goals that they set with their oncology team.  Goals include things such as taking icky medicine, finishing painful procedures and making healthy choices.

Adopt a Family: Catch the holiday spirit of giving! Adopt a family. Purchase gifts on their holiday wish list.

Family Events: Volunteer on trips to the ballpark. A picnic in the park. Or a holiday party. Families touched by cancer catch an experience to remember thanks to The Heart Connection.


Greater Des Moines Botanical Garden

909 Robert D. Ray Drive, Des Moines, IA 50309 (515) 323-6290 –

Mission: Exploring, explaining and celebrating the world of plants.

Volunteer opportunities available for retail operations, horticulture, education and special events.


Easter Seals Iowa (Camp Sunnyside)

401 NE 66th Avenue, Des Moines, IA 50313 (515) 289-1933 - email through website for volunteer opportunities –

Mission: Easter Seals Iowa provide exceptional services to ensure all people with disabilities or special needs, and their families, have equal opportunities to live, learn, work and play in their communities.

Catch a volunteer opportunity with children and adults with special needs. Volunteer opportunities include:
Respite weekends: Respite weekends serve both children and adults with disabilities. Volunteers are needed to help with arts and crafts on Saturdays from 9:30 a.m.–11:30 a.m. and with evening activities from 6 p.m.—9 p.m.

Summer Camp: Volunteers are needed to carry luggage to cabins on Sunday afternoons.
Grounds Beautification: Camp Sunnyside is located on 80 acres and many opportunities exist to upkeep and beautify the grounds including planting, raking and weeding.


Food Bank of Iowa

2220 E. 17th Street, Des Moines, IA 50316 (515) 564-0330 -

Mission: To alleviate hunger through food distribution, partnership, and education.

Volunteer Opportunities: Food Drive Sorter. Bulk Mail Projects. Backpack Buddies Set-Up. Details on the website under How to Help - Volunteer.


Goodwill Industries of Central Iowa

4900 NE 22nd Street, Des Moines, IA 50313 (515) 265-5323. Volunteer opportunities @

Mission: Provide programs which improve the quality of life for all individuals by providing skills training and helping people find jobs.

Flexible volunteer opportunities to work with your busy schedule, so that your time and skills will best support Goodwill’s mission. As a volunteer, your input will enhance our services and programs, making a difference in the lives of those we serve.

Through our volunteer program, we offer fun and hands-on opportunities that make a meaningful impact in the central Iowa community. Whether you are an individual interested in getting more involved in the community or a group looking to make a difference, Goodwill Industries of Central Iowa has an opportunity for you! Volunteer opportunities are available at our retail stores, main headquarters, and at special events held throughout the year.

Volunteer opportunities available throughout Central Iowa. Catch a win-win proposition with volunteer programs to meet your needs. Email for information.


Greater Des Moines Habitat for Humanity

2200 E Euclid Avenue, Des Moines, IA 50317  (515) 471-8686 -;

Seeking to put God’s love into action, Greater Des Moines Habitat for Humanity (GDM Habitat) brings people together to build homes, communities and hope. GDM Habitat is founded on the conviction that every man, woman, and child should have a decent, safe, and affordable place to live. We build with people in need regardless of race or religion. We welcome volunteers and supporters from all backgrounds.

Volunteer Opportunities:

Construction - Join us to work on building and rehabilitating homes in partnership with hard-working low-income families.

Rock the Block® - Assist residents with needed repair, maintenance, weatherization, safety, accessibility, and beautification of their homes.

ReStore - Help prepare donations for display, assist customers, keep the store organized, and help with special events or trade shows!


Hope Ministries

5075 E. University, Suite B, Pleasant Hill, IA 50327 (515) 265-7272 -; website:

Mission: To proclaim and demonstrate the life-changing Gospel of Jesus Christ, meeting the spiritual, physical and emotional needs of men, women and children who are homeless or in need of hope.

We have a variety of volunteer opportunities for families, churches and church groups, businesses, schools and other civic/service groups: Family Fun Night (Hope Center for Women and Children); Child Care (Hope Center for Women and Children); Donation Drive; Meals for Hope Opportunities; Service/Work Projects around our facilities; Holiday Support; Make a Bed ~ Keep them Fed


Link Associates

1452 29th Street, West Des Moines, IA 50265 (515) 262-8888 -

Mission: Providing people with mental disabilities opportunities to achieve their personal goals.

There are volunteer options with consumers in day programs, community based leisure and recreation program, or residential programs.  Volunteers are also needed to assist with indirect services supporting the organization’s operations. Opportunities are available across the greater Des Moines metropolitan area.

 Volunteer opportunities are numerous and ever-changing and include: Special Olympics Coach; Mentor for a Special Olympics Athlete; Special Event Support for dances, themed events and fundraisers; Community Art Connections as an artist or assistant; Special Projects; Field Trip Aide; Adult Day Program Companion for arts and crafts, reading, wellness programs; One on One Buddy Match; Clerical and Office Support; Facility Care and Repair of consumer’s homes and day program facilities


Lutheran Services in Iowa

3125 Cottage Grove Avenue, Des Moines, IA 50311 515-274-4946 -

Mission: LSI responds to the love of Jesus Christ through compassionate service.

In the Des Moines area, LSI has an on-going need for volunteers to support English as a Second Language, work readiness, and literacy classes. Volunteers can serve as teachers, assistants, or tutors. One-time, short-term and on-going opportunities are available. Individuals and groups welcome.

Please check out or email for more information.


Mentor Iowa

3900 Ingersoll Avenue, Suite 102, Des Moines, IA 50312 (515) 277-9797;

Mission: To provide trained volunteer mentors to abused, neglected and delinquent children who are under the jurisdiction of the Juvenile Court. We will do this by working in partnership with the children, their families, and the community.

Volunteer opportunities include: Become a Mentor. Adopt-a-Family sponsor. Toy/clothing gift donations. Gift wrapper/ party supervisors.

Nursing Homes: Donate DVD's to local nursing homes.


Polk County Conservation

11407 NW Jester Park Drive, Granger, 50109 (515) 323-5300

Mission: The Polk County Conservation Board's mission is to provide the citizens of Polk County with quality outdoor recreation, conservation education, and long term protection of Polk County's natural heritage.

Volunteer Opportunities: Adopt-A-Park Program. Select work days. Corps of Recovery.Trail ambassadors. Special park projects and efforts. Environmental education. Public program/events. Classroom program. Leisure services and Jester Park Equestrian Center. Details may be found at  


Rebuilding Together Greater Des Moines

1111 9th Street, Suite 265, Des Moines, IA 50314 (515) 284-7403 -

Mission: Rebuilding Together Greater Des Moines brings volunteers together to improve the homes and lives of low-income homeowners. We repair and revitalize homes through the generosity of volunteers and sponsors who are committed to keeping our city and its neighborhoods strong.

Rebuilding Day: The first Saturday in May is the Annual Rebuilding Day, when volunteers of all skill levels help repair and improve our project homes. Each home has a House Captain, who organizes and manages a project. Rebuilding Day is a rewarding experience and an excellent team building opportunity for companies and organizations.

Home Modification Program: Catch smaller projects throughout the year. Assist with installing ramps or making simple modifications such as installing handrails, fix broken windows, repair leaky roofs and much more to improve homes and the quality of life.


The Free Store 

1020 24th Street, West Des Moines, IA 50266; (515) 282-3733;;;

FreeStore Mission: We support children and families who have escaped abusive situations.  We provide donated furniture and household goods to clients of domestic violence services and local agencies as these families begin new independent, productive lives in safe environments.

The Free Store has three major needs: Donated household items; volunteers to pick up items, to distribute them to families, to schedule pickups and to organize items in the warehouse; and funds to pay for needed but unavailable items, and for warehouse rent and utilities. Catch a volunteer opportunity to provide for domestic violence families.


The Kiwanis Miracle League 

505 5th Avenue, Suite 202, Des Moines, IA 50309 (515) 282-9045 -;   

Mission: We offer accessible recreational opportunities for children with special needs so that they can participate in a team sport as a member of an organized baseball league.

Catch an opportunity to "buddy up" with the Kiwanis Miracle League. Volunteer to assist children with special needs so they can participate in an organized baseball league. Needed? Coaches. umpires. Field maintenance. Clean-up crews. And buddies to assist athletes around the bases. Monetary contributions and fund raising are also appreciated.


United Way of Central IA

1111 Ninth St, Suite 100, Des Moines, IA (515) 246-6500 - select volunteer opportunities from website;

United Way of Central Iowa's mission: To improve lives by uniting the caring power of our community.

Give an hour. Give a Saturday. Give your skill. Catch a volunteer opportunity with United Way of Central IA! Specific opportunities available based on interest and age.


Wesley Acres

3520 Grand Avenue, Des Moines, IA 50312 (515) 271-6796 Contact Volunteer Coordinator

Mission: Guided by Christian compassion, we support the independence, health and well-being of older adults – wherever they call home.

Serve coffee and conversation in our coffee/gift shop. Open Monday – Sunday, 9:30-11:30 a.m. or 2-4 p.m. Volunteer and visit at the same time!


Wildwood Hills Ranch 

2552 Union Lane, St. Charles, IA 50240 (641) 396-2414 - Volunteer Coordinator;

Mission: We exist to transform lives and strengthen communities by providing healing, hope, and God's unconditional love to children and youth at risk.

Summer camp. Year-round opportunities. Impact children when you volunteer at Wildwood Hills Ranch. Catch summer team leaders. Health and safety teams. Equine Program Volunteers. And more.


Youth & Shelter Services, Inc.

P.O. Box 1628, Ames, IA 50010 (515) 233-3141 various locations in Central Iowa;


Mission: To provide prevention, education, treatment and residential services to children, youth and families; to advocate on their behalf; and to help them solve problems, grow and be self-sufficient, responsible, contributing members of society.

Support youth and young mothers in Polk County. And help to eliminate homelessness among children.

Catch volunteer opportunities: Preparing and then serving a meal to our participants; Mentoring and/or tutoring a youth; Helping with childcare for children of our young mothers as they participate in tutoring, counseling, etc.; Organizing, cleaning or painting our facilities; Sorting and organizing donations, mostly clothing.