A Guide to Volunteering on Long Island

A Guide to Volunteering on Long Island
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A Guide to Volunteering on Long Island

Volunteering helps teach kids the value of what they have and why it’s important to help those who may not have as much. It also helps build strong family bonds as you work together as a family to do good. Finally, and perhaps most importantly, giving back spreads goodwill and joy to the community. 

There’s no shortage of places to volunteer on Long Island, but that can mean the sheer number of choices are overwhelming. Luckily, we’ve compiled a list of the best places for volunteering as a family on Long Island. This list will help you find the perfect way to give back!

Psst… Here’s a guide to Volunteering in New York City!

Crossroads Farm at Grossman’s

480 Hempstead Ave, Malverne, NY 11565

Volunteers are an important part of helping Crossroads serve their community. If you’re a family that loves the outdoors, get involved with planting, harvesting and ground keeping. They’re also looking for volunteers to help with running the farmstand or educational and fundraising events. The volunteer schedule for the spring will be announced soon. Crossroads accepts volunteers ages 14 or older. 

Friends of Hempstead Plains

Community College Biology Department, Garden City, NY 11530

Help keep Hempstead Plains beautiful. Starting at the beginning of the season in March, drop in for hand weeding gardens and pathways, removing invasive plants and other seasonal tasks. Children under 14 require a parent on site. 

HorseAbility

223 Store Hill Rd, Old Westbury, NY 11568

Kids or families that love horses will feel right at home volunteering with HorseAbility. HorseAbility provides equine services to children and adults with disabilities. Volunteers help with horse care, barn chores, treatment sessions, outreach and facility maintenance. Volunteers must be at least 14 years old. 

Island Harvest

Multiple Locations in Melville, Uniondale, Calverton and Brentwood

Island Harvest is the largest hunger relief organization on Long Island, striving to end hunger and reduce food waste.

Volunteers can help by running local food drives, helping with community food distribution, picking up and delivering perishable food, working on the farm, providing office support and more.

The minimum age for volunteering is 12 years old, and anyone under 16 should be accompanied by a parent or guardian, making it a great choice for families with older children. 

Jewish Association Serving the Aging (JASA) 

570 W Walnut St, Long Beach, NY 11561

Accepting volunteers of all ages, the JASA offers a variety of services that help improve the lives of seniors across the city. Offering everything from meals to legal services, the JASA is committed to empowering and embracing the elderly community of New York.

Long Island Children’s Museum

11 Davis Ave, Garden City, NY 11530

Support the Long Island Children’s Museum in delivering educational experiences to museum visitors. Volunteer opportunities at the museum include interacting with visitors on the museum floor, giving tours and helping with workshops. The minimum age to volunteer is 14. 

Sweetbriar Nature Center

62 Eckernkamp Dr, Smithtown, NY 11787

Long Islanders 16 years old and up can volunteer at the Sweetbriar Nature Center and help provide wildlife rehabilitation and nature education to Suffolk County. Volunteers can lead nature programs for schools and other groups, help with garden maintenance, assist in the Butterfly and Moth Vivarium and more. 

So Many Opportunities for Long Island Volunteering As a Family

All it takes is a click or a phone call to start teaching your kids the importance of giving back. This list is just a small sample of places where you and your family can volunteer on Long Island, so you can find a place to give back to your community in a way that makes sense for you and your family. 

It’s better to give than to receive so use this list to help you find the joy of giving back as a family! 

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Manhattan Mandarin

<p>Manhattan Mandarin runs the Mandarin after-school programs at over 40 schools</p> <p>nationwide, including St. Bernard's, Chapin, Allen-Stevenson, and Buckley. Whether</p> <p>in schools, students' homes, in the office, online, or on our beloved China trips, our</p> <p>teachers and tutors have helped hundreds of students of all ages master the Mandarin</p> <p>language on their own unique paths to fluency. Our philosophy has always been to</p> <p>make private lessons and classes perfectly tailored for each individual student. We</p> <p>look forward to working with you.</p> <p>- Jamie Keyte, Founder</p>

Steps on Broadway Youth Programs

<p class="m_6201101365486487057m_1751229968981391907gmail-m-6447730382188674378msonospacing" style="color: #222222; font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: small; background-color: #ffffff;"><span style="font-family: Arial, sans-serif;">For 40 years, the Youth Programs at the internationally celebrated Steps on Broadway have nurtured young dancers, ages 18 months to 18 years.  Whether seeking a fun dance experience or comprehensive pre-professional training, there is a program suited for everyone.  Classes include ballet, tap, jazz, theater dance, hip hop, contemporary, modern, pointe and more.  Taught by a faculty of internationally-recognized concert, ballet, Broadway and celebrated guest artists, every student is encouraged to discover their artistic uniqueness, deepen their passion for the art form, while growing as dancers and individuals. </span><u></u><u></u></p> <p class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0px 0px 10pt; color: #222222; font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: small; background: white;"><span style="font-family: Arial, sans-serif; color: #5a5a5a;">Classes are offered throughout the academic year and summer.</span><u></u><u></u></p> <p class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0px 0px 10pt; color: #222222; font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: small; background: white;"><span style="font-family: Arial, sans-serif; color: #5a5a5a;">First Steps (ages 18 mos – 5 yrs)</span><u></u><u></u></p> <p class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0px 0px 10pt; color: #222222; font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: small; background: white;"><span style="font-family: Arial, sans-serif; color: #5a5a5a;">Kids & Teens (ages 6-18 yrs)</span><u></u><u></u></p> <p class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0px 0px 10pt; color: #222222; font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: small; background: white;"><span style="font-family: Arial, sans-serif; color: #5a5a5a;">Pre-Professional Program (ages 7-18 yrs, by audition only)</span></p>

Child's Play NY Virtual Classes

<p dir="ltr" style="line-height: 1.38; background-color: #ffffff; margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 0pt;"><span style="font-size: 12pt; font-family: arial, helvetica, sans-serif; color: #000000; background-color: transparent; font-weight: bold; font-style: normal; font-variant-ligatures: normal; font-variant-caps: normal; font-variant-east-asian: normal; font-variant-position: normal; text-decoration: none; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap;"><span id="docs-internal-guid-f0d8558c-7fff-41d5-daea-321d9ce61efc" style="white-space: normal; font-weight: normal;"><span style="font-variant-ligatures: normal; font-variant-east-asian: normal; font-variant-position: normal; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap;">Child's Play NY is a Brooklyn-based company founded in 2009, committed to offering a diverse array of theater arts classes for children. They believe studying the art of acting encourages kids to be even more creative, collaborative and compassionate human beings. Since its inception, Child's Play NY has touched the lives of hundreds of students, worked inside dozens of schools and is consistently ranked as among the top theater arts programs. </span></span></span><span style="font-family: arial, helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 16px; white-space: pre-wrap;">It is the 2019 winner of Brooklyn Family's Choice award for Best Performing Arts Class.</span></p> <p dir="ltr" style="line-height: 1.38; background-color: #ffffff; margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 0pt;"> </p> <p dir="ltr" style="line-height: 1.38; background-color: #ffffff; margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 0pt;"><span style="font-size: 12pt; font-family: arial, helvetica, sans-serif;"><span style="color: #000000; background-color: transparent; font-weight: bold; font-style: normal; font-variant-ligatures: normal; font-variant-caps: normal; font-variant-east-asian: normal; font-variant-position: normal; text-decoration: none; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap;">Fall/Winter 2020-21 Virtual Class Guide</span><span style="color: #000000; background-color: transparent; font-weight: 400; font-style: normal; font-variant-ligatures: normal; font-variant-caps: normal; font-variant-east-asian: normal; font-variant-position: normal; text-decoration: none; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap;">:</span></span></p> <p dir="ltr" style="line-height: 1.38; background-color: #ffffff; margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 0pt;"> </p> <p dir="ltr" style="line-height: 1.38; background-color: #ffffff; margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 0pt;"><strong><span style="font-size: 12pt; font-family: arial, helvetica, sans-serif; color: #000000; background-color: transparent; font-style: normal; font-variant-ligatures: normal; font-variant-caps: normal; font-variant-east-asian: normal; font-variant-position: normal; text-decoration: underline; text-decoration-skip: none; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap;">Make a Movie Class</span></strong></p> <p dir="ltr" style="line-height: 1.38; background-color: #ffffff; margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 0pt;"><span style="font-size: 12pt; font-family: arial, helvetica, sans-serif; color: #000000; background-color: transparent; font-weight: 400; font-style: normal; font-variant-ligatures: normal; font-variant-caps: normal; font-variant-east-asian: normal; font-variant-position: normal; text-decoration: none; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap;">Experience creative fulfillment and movie magic with Child’s Play NY! Kids get to make and star in their own film, with professional actors, directors and designers. From development to design to editing choices too, kids can take ownership over the creative process. Their friends and family get to celebrate their accomplishments at a final watch party premiere! Deep project-based learning and peer-connection is at the heart of this 9-week experience which can be done remotely or in-person.</span></p> <p dir="ltr" style="line-height: 1.38; background-color: #ffffff; margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 0pt;"> </p> <p dir="ltr" style="line-height: 1.38; background-color: #ffffff; margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 0pt;"><span style="font-size: 12pt; font-family: arial, helvetica, sans-serif;"><strong><span style="color: #000000; background-color: transparent; font-style: normal; font-variant-ligatures: normal; font-variant-caps: normal; font-variant-east-asian: normal; font-variant-position: normal; text-decoration: underline; text-decoration-skip: none; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap;">Fall and Winter Virtual Classes</span></strong></span></p> <p dir="ltr" style="line-height: 1.38; background-color: #ffffff; margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 0pt;"> </p> <p dir="ltr" style="line-height: 1.38; margin-left: 36pt; background-color: #ffffff; margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 0pt;"><span style="font-size: 12pt; font-family: arial, helvetica, sans-serif; color: #000000; background-color: transparent; font-weight: 400; font-style: normal; font-variant-ligatures: normal; font-variant-caps: normal; font-variant-east-asian: normal; font-variant-position: normal; text-decoration: none; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap;"><strong>Hogwarts School (grades 1-3)</strong>: Come get sorted into your favorite house, jump on your Firebolt and let’s make some magic! Class culminates in a movie montage featuring our original scripted work from the session.</span></p> <p dir="ltr" style="line-height: 1.38; background-color: #ffffff; margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 0pt;"> </p> <p dir="ltr" style="line-height: 1.38; background-color: #ffffff; margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 0pt;"> </p> <p dir="ltr" style="line-height: 1.38; background-color: #ffffff; margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 0pt;"><strong><span style="font-size: 12pt; font-family: arial, helvetica, sans-serif; color: #000000; background-color: transparent; font-style: normal; font-variant-ligatures: normal; font-variant-caps: normal; font-variant-east-asian: normal; font-variant-position: normal; text-decoration: underline; text-decoration-skip: none; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap;">Create Your Own Class</span></strong></p> <p dir="ltr" style="line-height: 1.38; background-color: #ffffff; margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 0pt;"><span style="font-size: 12pt; font-family: arial, helvetica, sans-serif; color: #000000; background-color: transparent; font-weight: 400; font-style: normal; font-variant-ligatures: normal; font-variant-caps: normal; font-variant-east-asian: normal; font-variant-position: normal; text-decoration: none; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap;">Make your own custom group to support social-emotional growth and play. Child’s Play NY provides a dynamic teacher and their lauded curriculum that puts peer-interaction at the front and center. Custom classes are a special way to nurture what your child loves most and share that excitement with their friends, in-person or online.</span></p> <p dir="ltr" style="line-height: 1.38; background-color: #ffffff; margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 0pt;"> </p> <div style="caret-color: #222222; color: #222222; font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif;"><strong>Playwriting (Grades 4-6)</strong></div> <div style="caret-color: #222222; color: #222222; font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif;">Students will use their creativity, compassion and confidence to build a story they can carry with them for the rest of their lives. Individually, each student will craft a play, and together they will workshop their scenes, exercising their acting, directing, and most importantly, imagination skills. Over the course of the sessions, students will learn the basics of playwriting and be able to present any and all parts of their theatrical story. All classes will include individual assignments and collaborative opportunities. Each day will be structured so that all participants have the chance to learn and study other writers’ work, write for 10-15 minutes and share their words with each other. By the end of the semester they will have used their bodies, intellect and imagination to come up with an original play. By being confident, vulnerable and creative with each other and actively supporting and encouraging each other’s work, students will emerge with meaningful connections to each other and a strong sense of their writing and collaborative abilities.<br />Class culminates in a montage and packet of students’ original work.<strong><br /></strong></div> <div style="caret-color: #222222; color: #222222; font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif;"> </div> <div style="caret-color: #222222; color: #222222; font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif;"><strong>Musical Theater Lab (Grades 4-6)</strong></div> <div style="caret-color: #222222; color: #222222; font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif;">Learn how to be a triple threat in this dynamic class for budding performers with Child’s Play NY. Students focus on songs, dances and characters from Broadway’s most celebrated and kid-friendly shows. They work alongside professional performers with years of experience bringing their passion to children. Class culminates in a movie showcase of scenes and songs.<br />Join for the full session, or enroll as a drop-in!<strong><br /></strong></div> <div style="caret-color: #222222; color: #222222; font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif;"> </div> <div style="caret-color: #222222; color: #222222; font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif;"><strong>Shakespeare Scene Study (Grades 3-5, 6-8 and 9-12)</strong></div> <div style="caret-color: #222222; color: #222222; font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif;">Young people become confident with Shakespeare’s world, language and characters as they learn how to interpret a role with technique and courage. Classically trained professional actors assist the players in their physical, vocal and emotional transformations. All Shakespeare teaching artists are classically trained professional actors and have performed Shakespeare both on and off Broadway and in regional theaters across the country.</div> <div style="caret-color: #222222; color: #222222; font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif;">Students jump into the worlds of Shakespeare in this robust mash-up of improvisation and classic text scene study class. After learning the plot and characters from several plays, they rehearse and memorize scenes from the original text. New material, devised by the cast, adds a contemporary through-line to their show and highlights the universality of Shakespeare’s themes.<br />Class culminates in a movie showcasing their work.</div> <div style="caret-color: #222222; color: #222222; font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif;"> </div> <div style="caret-color: #222222; color: #222222; font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif;"><strong>The Big Twist: A New Musical (Grade 1-4)</strong></div> <p dir="ltr" style="line-height: 1.38; background-color: #ffffff; margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 0pt;"> </p> <div style="caret-color: #222222; color: #222222; font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif;">In this acting class, students get to perform a brand new musical based on The Wizard of Oz.<br />The Wicked Witch of the South wants to return Oz to a time when WITCHES reigned supreme, and all was evil. Summoning a dark magic Tornado, the Wicked Witch of the South sends Oz hurtling into an alternate Oz. With the Yellow Brick road destroyed, the Wizard left powerless, and the citizens of Oz scattered to the Wind, our heroes are forced into unlikely partnerships to stop the Witch and restore the world to order. The Wizard of Oz meets The Tempest.  Class culminates in a premiere of a movie starring the students, filmed over the last few days of the session.</div> <p dir="ltr" style="line-height: 1.38; background-color: #ffffff; margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 0pt;"> </p> <p dir="ltr" style="line-height: 1.38; margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 0pt;"> </p> <p dir="ltr" style="line-height: 1.38; margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 0pt;"><span id="docs-internal-guid-57c50323-7fff-79ce-175a-5e25408c0e29"></span></p> <p><span id="docs-internal-guid-84ebe141-7fff-03c2-24cf-fead86e88df2"></span></p>