Pre-Approved Volunteer Opportunities

Questions about the Silver Cord volunteer program?
Take a few minutes to review the Silver Cord Online Handbook

Pre-Approved and listed in Silver Cord Online

The organizations or schools listed below are currently seeking volunteers. All of the volunteer opportunities are Silver Cord approved and are pre-loaded in Silver Cord Online.

WDMCS District Volunteer Opportunities

VHS After Prom Fundraiser-Basketball Game Raffle   January 18

Volunteers are needed to help sell raffle tickets to raise money for the 2019 Valley After Prom Party. The fundraiser will take place at the home VHS basketball game Friday, January 18 from 5:30pm – 9:00pm. To volunteer please use the link: For more information about this volunteer opportunity contact Maria Wrage at  

NEW: Clive Learning Academy – Family Fun Night  January 29

Clive Learning Academy is seeking volunteers to help at Family Fun Night to be held at the school Tuesday, January 29 from 5:00pm to 7:00pm. Students will be placed at a table with craft supplies and will help families and pre kindergarten students make book props. To volunteer please contact Angie Matthews at

Community Education – Personal Care Drive 2019  January 28 – February 14

During the week of February 11-15 WDMCS schools will be collecting personal care items to be given to Clive Community Services, West Des Moines Human Services, and families in need. Volunteers will be paired with a school and will decorate and drop off a donation box, distribute PR materials to the school, count and collect donations, and pack the donations on Thursday, February 14.  All supplies will be provided and volunteers will earn 5 hours of Silver Cord credit for this service opportunity. To sign-up please use the link Questions?  Please contact Rosemary Brandt at

Community Education – ESL Child Care Helpers  January 22 – May 16

You can make a difference in the lives of dedicated adult English language students by helping with child care during class. Volunteers are needed in the Learning Resource Center every Tuesday and Thursday evening from 5-7:45 p.m.   Two volunteers are needed each evening to assist the child care provider. You will be responsible for helping play games, reading books, and other various tasks while parents learn. Come have fun! You must be at least age 16, love children, and be patient with and have respect for individuals with diverse backgrounds. To volunteer sign-up through the link  For more information, contact Karen Crosby at  The Learning Resource Center is located at 3550 Mills Civic Pkwy.

NEW: Fairmeadows – Movie Nights   January 26, February 16, and March 30

Volunteers are needed at the Fairmeadows Movie Nights to be held  three Saturday this winter; January 26, February 16, and March 30. Duties include selling snacks before and during the movie, chaperoning children during the movie, and cleaning up after the evening. To volunteer use the link:  For more information contact Hollie Allen at

NEW: Jordan Creek – Tiger Cubs Preschool Family Night   February 7

Tiger Cubs Preschool is having a Family Literacy Night at Jordan Creek Elementary, Thursday, February 7 at 5:30pm. We are looking for volunteers to help set up activity stations, serve meals to families, assist students with a craft, facilitate activity stations, and assist with cleaning up.  To sign-up follow this link: For more information contact Teresa GAllentine at

Crossroads Park Elementary – Open House and Pancake Dinner February 7

Volunteers are needed  Thursday, February 7 from 4:30pm-8:30pm to help with the Crossroads Park Open House and Pancake Feed. Duties include setting up tables, making and serving beverages, cleaning tables, taking out the trash and clean-up. To volunteer contact Janelle Bailey at Volunteers available for  all four hours (4:30pm-8:30pm) are encouraged to sign up.

NEW: Stilwell – Band Solo Festival    February 11

The Stilwell Band Solo Festival is scheduled for Monday, February 11 from 3:15p-7:40p.  Volunteers are needed to serve as center monitors who will assist soloists and judges, ballot runners who will collect ballots, and office helpers who will organize ballots and post ratings. Volunteers are needed as early as 2:45p to as late as approximately 7:40p. Students can work the whole night or in half shifts  (full shift) 3:15pm-7:30pm (half shifts) 3:15pm-6:00pm, 5:30pm-7:30pm.  If interested, please email Mr. Lewis at and in your email state which shift you can volunteer for. Volunteer openings will be filled on a first come first served basis, six volunteers are needed for each shift.

Clive Learning Academy – PTO Meeting Childcare   February 19

Clive Learning Academy holds monthly Parent Teacher Organization meetings in the school media center. Parents attending this meeting will often bring their elementary aged children. The Clive PTO is looking for 2 Silver Cord individuals to join us in the Media Center to watch over the children during the meeting. There are four meeting dates this school year, Feb 19, and May 21 and the hours are 6:45pm-8:30pm. For additional information contact Laura Schieber at

Sign up using the SignUpGenius link: 

NEW: Valley High School – Tiger Tough Camp, February 19 – March 14

Are you a Tiger athlete who enjoys weight training and conditioning? Volunteers ages 16 and above are needed to help with the Tiger Tough Camp, a junior high strength and conditioning program to be held at Valley High School in the weight room/fitness center. Volunteers will be helping  7th and 8th graders with age appropriate exercises which include mobility, flexibility, core control, stability, running, upper and lower strengthening, power, agility, and plyometrics. The camp will be held Tuesday and Thursday, February 19 – March 14 from 5:30pm – 6:30pm. Four volunteers are needed each day.  Sign up link:   

Western Hills – Senior Buddy Program    January – May

Current WDMCS seniors who are eligible for open lunch are invited to be buddies with elementary students at Western Hills. Interested volunteers must be willing to meet their elementary buddy at least once a week during lunch and serve as a positive role model. The goal of the Buddy Program is to build relationships and give younger students an opportunity to meet an older student whom they can look up to. To volunteer or for more information contact Lauren Nystrom at Seniors who volunteer at least once a week starting in January can earn up to 15 hours. Western Hills Elementary is located at 600 39th Street in West DCrossroads Park Elementary – Open House and Pancake Dinner February 7
Volunteers are needed on Thursday, February 7 from 4:30pm-8:30pm to help with the Crossroads Park Open House and Pancake Feed. Duties include setting up tables, making and serving beverages, cleaning tables, taking out the trash and clean-up. To volunteer contact Janelle Bailey at Volunteers available for the all four hours (4:30pm-8:30pm) are encouraged to sign Moines.

Community Education – Crazy 8s Math Club    October 3 – April 3

Crazy 8s is a WDMCS Community Education after school math club where kids are able to do fun math activities like glow in the dark geometry, toilet paper Olympics and flying marshmallows!  Silver Cord students will be helping the teacher organize and manage the activities. The class will be held at the Clive Learning Academy on Wednesdays from 3:15p-4:15p for eight weeks. Volunteers can sign up for all sessions or ones that fit into your schedule, Dates are Oct 3, 10, 17, 24, Nov 7, 14, 28.  For more information contact Heidi Marean at  To volunteer use the signup link

Hillside  – Media Center Helper (for Valley students during the school year)

Hillside Elementary is looking for a few good volunteers to help in the media center. Duties include re shelving library books, organizing and cleaning the library, cutting and laminating, sharpening pencils and organizing papers. Times available are for students with open periods before or after school on Monday/Tuesday 8:15a-9:25a, Thursday 3:15p-4:15p, or Friday 3:00p-4:15p. Other shifts can be arranged for seniors with a little more flexibility before or after school. To volunteer contact Stephanie Farmer at

Clive Learning Academy – library assistant during the school year

Clive Learning Academy needs help shelving and organizing books in the library/media center on Monday and Thursday afternoons each week that school is in session. Volunteers can help anytime from 1:00p to 4:30p. Our teacher librarian, Morgan Miller will be there to assist the entire time. To volunteer email Laura Schieber at and let her know which days and hours you are available. This is a great opportunity for seniors with some afternoon flexibility.

VHS Honors Project – Kate Snodgrass – Western Hills Science Club     fall semester

Volunteers are needed to help with the Western Hills Science Club which will meet every other Tuesday from 3:55p – 5:10p starting September 4. Silver Cord volunteers will work with 5th and 6th grade students at Western Hills so they can learn more about science through hands-on experiments. Topics covered include physics, engineering, environmental science, and more!  No experience is necessary in these areas. To volunteer click here. Or e-mail Kate at

VHS- Booster Club – Concession Stand

Silver Cord volunteers are eligible to help in the various concession stands at Valley and VSW sporting events. Each time the concession stands are open a sports team is responsible for providing volunteers. To help fill the gaps (one) Silver Cord student can also volunteer in any shift that is not assigned to their own VHS/VSW team. Only One Student Per Shift Can Sign Up, No Pairs Or Groups. Effective Immediately, The Only Concession Spots That Silver Cord Students Can Sign Up For Are Labeled Silver Cord Only. All Other Shifts That They Sign Up For Will Be Deleted. This Will Be For All Sports Seasons. The shifts are two hours long and it’s fun to be a part of the action! To sign-up use the link: more information contact the Volunteer Coordinator at

Children’s Cancer Connection Blankets—Sept. through May

The Children’s Cancer Connection is collecting blankets to send with kids to camp. Handmade polar fleece tie blankets for both boys and girls ages 5-18 are needed. Please put the blankets in a bag and drop off at the Valley Counseling center or the VSW main office. Make sure to include a note with name, grade, and date. Two hours of Silver Cord Credit can be earned by purchasing the fleece, making the blanket and turning it in to Mrs. Bonus at VSW or her office in the VHS Counseling Office.  Students can make one blanket a month.  PLEASE note: in order to get credit you must remember to cut off the salvage of the fleece as well as make sure you knot the strips (not just tie them once). To learn how to make a blanket please review the attached directions. Blankets will not be accepted after May 31st.  Blankets will again be accepted September 1st.


Metro Area Volunteer Opportunities

Adaptive Sports Iowa – Split the Pot   December – April

The Iowa Wild hockey team has invited Adaptive Sports Iowa to be the recipients of the “Split the Pot” raffle that takes place at all home hockey games. Volunteers will sell raffle tickets during each game until the end of the second intermission. The proceeds raised during the game will be split between the winning ticket and Adaptive Sports Iowa. This is a tremendous fundraising opportunity for our organization that will have profound effects on our ability to serve our clients. Each volunteer will use a wireless device that prints out raffle tickets and sends the prize total to the scoreboard. Volunteers will receive parking, admission to the game, and a coupon for a slice of pizza. All Iowa Wild games take place at the Wells Fargo Arena in Des Moines, 233 Center Street, Des Moines.

To sign up for a shift go to:  For more information please contact us at 888-777-8881 or email at

Walnut Creek YMCA – Ice Breaker Triathlon   January 27

Volunteers are needed on Sunday, January 27 to help at the Walnut Creek YMCA Ice Breaker Triathlon. This event will be held indoors from 5:30a-11:00a and duties include swim timing (5:30a-9:00a) bike timing (5:45a-9:45a) and treadmill timing (6:00a-10:30a) To volunteer use the link

Questions?  Contact Christina VanderLeest at

NEW: Valley Church – Tim Tebow Night To Shine Prom Buddy  February 8

Tim Tebow Night to Shine is an unforgettable prom night experience for guests who have special needs or disabilities. Volunteers need to be at least 16 years old and willing to dress up for the prom. You will be matched with a guest and will serve as a prom buddy. Activities include a limo ride, walking the red carpet, dinner, dancing, and many other prom activities. The prom will be held Friday, February 8 from 4:00pm – 9:30pm at Valley Church West Des Moines. To volunteer sign up through the link: If you have questions contact Jean Lunsbury at

Opportunity on Deck-Basketball Coaches/Mentors  January 11 – February 9

Opportunity on Deck will be hosting a basketball league at Crestview Elementary School and are in need of silver cord volunteers to help run drills, teach the fundamentals, lead games and coach participants through scrimmages. No coaching experience necessary, just a positive attitude, some basketball knowledge and a willingness to help kids! The league will start Friday, January 11 and run through Saturday, February 9.  To see open shifts and times go to the link  volunteers can sign up for one date or come each week, whatever fits best into your schedule. For more information contact Amy Tagliareni at

Opportunity on Deck-Dance Clinic      January 14 – February 16

Volunteer dance teachers are needed to help teach dance to elementary students who have never had the opportunity to take an organized dance class. The dance clinic will be offered on Mondays and Saturdays for 5 weeks, January 14 – February 16.  Volunteers will be assisting the head dance coach with stretches, warmups, games, and lessons. To see open dates and times use the link The classes will be held at Crestview Elementary in Clive and volunteers can sign up for one date or come each week, whatever fits best into your schedule. To learn more contact Amy Tagliareni at

 Clive Parks and Recreation – Youth Basketball Leagues   November – February  

Clive Parks and Recreation organizes and coordinates 112- team youth basketball league during the months of November-February.  Scorekeepers operate the electronic scoreboard and keep the score sheet during league play. Games are held on Sunday’s and volunteers are needed during the games November 11, 2018 – February 17, 2019. There are three shift times available,  11:30 a.m.-4:00 p.m., 3:45 p.m.- 8:15 p.m., and 11:00 a.m. – 8:15 p.m. These games are held at various West Des Moines Community Schools and Waukee schools. For more information please contact Jeff Lucas at  To volunteer e-mail Jeff and let him know what dates and shifts you are available to help.

Des Moines Performing Arts – Sensory Friendly Performances  March 16

Des Moines Performing Arts is seeking volunteers for this season’s sensory-friendly performances as part of the Wellmark Blue Cross Blue Shield Family Series. Sensory-friendly performances are geared towards those on the autism spectrum, individuals with other sensory sensitivities and their families. Volunteers will greet guests, provide directions, help with art stations, and provide general assistance throughout each event. This opportunity is ideal for those who have experience working with individuals on the autism spectrum, atypical learners and others with sensory sensitivities. Shifts will consist of volunteer training, event/lobby assistance once lobbies open one hour prior to curtain, and clean-up/resetting the lobby. All volunteers must attend the volunteer training at the beginning of the shift to serve as a volunteer that day. Each volunteer will receive a t-shirt upon arrival to wear during their volunteer shift.

Upcoming shows: THE UGLY DUCKLING at the Des Moines Civic Center Saturday, November 3, 2018 | 10 AM (volunteer shift from 7:45 AM to 11:30 AM, UNDERNEATH A MAGICAL MOON at the Temple Theater Saturday, March 16, 2019 | 11 AM (volunteer shift from 8:45 AM to 12:30 PM. Interested volunteers should fill out the volunteer form online HERE. The deadline to sign up for the November 3 show is October 28 and the deadline for the March 16, 2019 show is March 10. Questions contact Sarah Florian at

NEW: Iowa Braille School – Spring Family Conference   April 5-6

Volunteers are needed to help at the Iowa Educational Services for the Blind and Visually Impaired family conference scheduled for April 5 and 6 at the Wellmark YMCA downtown. There are several shifts available, Friday, April 5 from 5:00pm – 10:00pm and Saturday April 6 from 8:00am – 12:00pm and 12:00pm – 5:00pm. Duties include set up, playing games and helping children with crafts. Volunteers will need to fill out a volunteer application and background release form. Both forms need to be turned in by March 6th.  For more information contact Shelley Smith at

Sean Nielsen Foundation – Annual Gala  April 6

The Sean Nielsen Foundation is holding a gala Saturday, April 6th from 5:30pm- 9:30pm Volunteers are needed to help make lemonade and tea, work in the kitchen, and possibly set up and tear down. When signing up use the link: ( ) select “other” and mention that you are a silver cord volunteer available to help during the gala, there are three shifts available, 5:00pm-9:30pm, 5:00pm-7:00pm, and 7:00pm -9:30pm, please include your preferred shift when signing up to help. For more information contact Kris Smith at This event will take place at the Fred Maytag Scout Center, 6123 Scout Trail in Des Moines.

Single Parent Provision – Break Time West       May 3

Single Parent Provision is a non-profit organization working to strengthen the lives of single parents and their families in central Iowa. Volunteers are needed May 3 at the Single Parent Provision being held at the Valley Community Center, 4444 Fuller Read in West Des Moines. Duties include helping children from infant to age 14 with planned activities, board games, legos, and playdough. To volunteer go to the Single Parent Provision sign up and select Break Time West. Hours will be from 5:00p to 9:15p. For additional information contact Cheryl Prall at

Meals from the Heartland WDM Packaging Center

Did you know that the main Meals from the Heartland packaging center is located right here in WDM! It is located just south of Valley Junction at 357 Lincoln Street in West Des Moines! Severals times a week including Saturday’s Meals from the Heartland has open packing opportunities for volunteers. For more information check out the Meals from the Heartland website  To volunteer use the online registration form Volunteer at Meals from the Heartland

WDM Library- Monthly Group Service Project  Monthly,  September – May

The Library is looking for volunteers to help with a monthly group service project – A monthly, two hours volunteer opportunity for students in 9th – 12th grades. A variety of tasks will be performed to help out the Library including cleaning and straightening shelves, organizing materials, preparing program supplies, and more. No experience or training necessary! To participate students must fill out a completed Group Service Project Application. To obtain the application or for more information please contact or 515-222-3412. Or check out the volunteer opportunity webpage.

Waukee Community Closet – Volunteer

High school volunteers are needed on an ongoing basis to help at the Waukee Community Closet. Duties include organizing and helping during shopping and donation hours. To learn more check out the Waukee Community Closet web page and look for the volunteer tab. The Waukee Community Closet is located at 77 Carefree Lane in Waukee. Questions? Contact Cindy Torvic at

Clive Community Services – ESL Class

Clive Community Services is seeking Junior & Senior aged Silver Cord Volunteers to serve as Classroom Assistants for ESL (English as a Second Language) classes this summer. Classes are scheduled for every Monday, 12:00 – 1:30 PM and Wednesday, 10:00 – 11:00 AM in June, July, and August. Classes will be held at Clive Community Services, 2190 NW 82nd Street, Suite A.  You need not speak any languages other than English since students may speak different languages and it may vary by day.  However, CCS serves many Chin speakers and so Chin speaking students who are proficient in English may be interested. Please contact Pam Mohr, Education Director at with questions.  Or visit our signup via our signup genius site:

Kiwanis Miracle League – Angels in the Outfield  

Miracle League Buddies (volunteers) act as “angels in the outfield” to assigned players who have physical or mental challenges. Volunteer duties include providing a safe experience and to be enthusiastic and encouraging during the game. Buddies will receive training and will commit to the “Buddy Pledge”.

For more information contact Jan Burch at

Video: Kiwanis Miracle League Video

Application: Miracle League Application

Directions: 529 Southwest 5th Street, Des Moines, IA – Google Maps

West Des Moines Lions Club – Volunteer Webmaster

The West Des Moines Lions Club is looking for a student or students to help keep the local Lions Club website up to date. Duties will include working with Lions Club International on building and enhancing the website and showcasing the local clubs activities, pictures, and upcoming events. To be considered for this position please contact Mike Hammen, Club President, at The hours for this volunteer opportunity are flexible and the work will be done at Mike Hammen’s office, Advantage Financial Services, 1776 22nd Street, West Des Moines, Iowa.

Des Moines Children’s Museum – Museum Volunteer      ongoing

Des Moines Children’s Museum is a 501 (c)(3) 100% volunteer run organization with the long term goal of opening a permanent location. Volunteers will assist with the day-to-day operation of the museum.  Tasks will include things like welcoming visitors, sanitizing toys, and keeping exhibits tidy. The Des Moines Children’s Museum is located at Valley West Mall.  To volunteer sign up on the Des Moines Children’s Museum volunteer page Questions?  Contact Julie Burtnette at

Plymouth Place Senior Living – Tech Time      ongoing during the school year

Are you looking for a good way to get your Silver Cord hours? Are you good with computers, phone, i-pads, and tablets? Plymouth Place Senior Community, an independent living community for seniors, is looking for students to come and help at “Tech Time” on Wednesday afternoons from 3:00p -5:00p or Saturday mornings 10:00a to 12:00p throughout the school year. All you have to do is help the seniors with their electronic gadgets! Most tech questions will be very simple, like how to turn off/on WiFi or finding apps and using apps. Interested volunteers need to be patient, have a heart for the elderly, and the ability to explain things very clearly. Plymouth Place is located at 4111 Ingersoll Ave in Des Moines. To get on the schedule check out the open dates through the link: or for more information contact Carla Moon at

West Des Moines Community Equity DiscussionsOctober through July 

Silver Cord volunteers are invited to participate in a series of community discussions on the issue of equity and the development of an anti-bias community. Beginning in the spring of 2016, a group of West Des Moines Valley parents met to discuss ways to support the West Des Moines school district and community on the issue of equity and the development of an anti-bias community. The parents reached out to the administration of Valley High School, City Government and to West Des Moines elected leaders with an expression of support and a desire to help. Valley Administration, West Des Moines City Government and West Des Moines elected leaders responded with interest and the idea of holding community discussions was formed. The focus of the 2017-2018 discussions will be based on the Welcoming America – Building a Nation of Neighbors Program ( For additional information contact Mark Hillenband at

The discussions are open to the public and will be held at the Learning Resource Center, 3550 Mills Civic Parkway in WDM on the 2nd Thursday of the month beginning October 12 from 7:00p-9:00p. Students who participate in the discussions can sign-in when they arrive and will receive two hours of Silver Cord credit.

WDM Library- Teen Advisory Board

Are you interested in making the library a better place for teens? Then the WDM Public Library’s Teen Advisory Board is for you! By becoming a member of TAB you can take a leadership role in your community, give input in teen activities, and help develop the collection of young adult materials at the Library. TAB members also host fundraisers for teen programming at the Library, participate in community activities, help with Children’s programs at the library and more. TAB meets September through May on the 2nd Wednesday of the month from 3:30-5:00 p.m. in the Library’s Classroom. Interested student must apply.  For more information regarding the application process contact Jenna Ehler at

 Manor Care (HCR ManorCare) – Activities Volunteer

HCR ManorCare is looking for students to volunteer at their facility in West Des Moines. Volunteers will assist with fun activities such as: bingo, arts and crafts, cards, board games, trivia, Wii games, name that tune, and more! They also have a piano where volunteers may play songs for our residents. The hours are flexible through the end of the school year; M-F to 6:00p and Sat-Sun 9:00a-6:00p. To volunteer please e-mail Amy Gochanour   HCR ManorCare is located at 5010 Grand Ridge Drive in West Des Moines

Clive Community Services—Pantry & Clothing Volunteers

Clive Community Services is seeking regular volunteers to help in our Food Pantry & Clothing Room. Pantry volunteers will work with clients as they shop. Clothing volunteers will assist & monitor clients as they shop. Clive Community Services is located at 2190 NW 82nd Street, Suite A in Clive. This is near the intersection of 86th & Hickman and near Crestview Elementary. Please contact Lisa at for more details. Sign up at  More information about Clive Community Services can be found here.

Make A Wish- Office Assistant

Make a Wish is recruiting an office helper on Wednesday’s after school from 2:30p-4:30p.  Volunteer duties will include scanning, filing and shredding.   To volunteer please email Rachel or call and speak with her at the office, 515-334-2636.  This volunteer position will run through the month of March, interested candidates must by 17 or older.  If you are a junior or senior needing to get service hours done this is a great pre-approved opportunity.

Ongoing Opportunities

Food bank of Iowa     

Pantry Volunteers needed! Join Food Bank of Iowa as we assist community members shopping for food items in our on-site pantry!  Volunteers in this role will help us with restocking the pantry and getting groceries out to the vehicles of pantry clients. Shift times are Tuesdays 3:30p – 7:30p. Qualifications: able to stand, move, bend, and lift 25 lbs, able to safely use box cutters, packing tape, and packing tools. Volunteers must be 16 years of age or older.  Go to to sign up directly on our volunteer calendar. The Food Bank of Iowa is located at 2220 E. 17th Street in Des Moines. For more information contact Michaela Devaney at

National Speech and Debate Association    

Volunteers are needed on an ongoing basis to help prepare honor society mailings and certificates for students and coaches participating in speech and debate across the county.  This is a flexible volunteer opportunity. To arrange volunteer shifts contact Amy Seidelman at The National Speech and Debate Association is located at 401 Railroad Place in West Des Moines.

GiGi’s Playhouse – Adult Percussion Group

GiGi’s Playhouse, a Down Syndrome achievement center located in Windsor Heights, would like to start a percussion group by partnering Valley band percussion students and GiGi adults who are interested in playing a percussion instrument. Student volunteers would need to bring their own instruments (tambourine, bells, moroccas, snare drum; instruments that are easily transportable) Times for this activity have not been determined. This is flexible, as it could be weekly or biweekly or during the fall and spring.  For more information please contact Lisa Woiwood, GiGi’s Playhouse board member at

Beverdale Estates Retirement Community- “My Story” Interviews

Beverdale Estates is seeking volunteers to work with seniors for a project titled: “My Story”. This would involve interviewing residents one on one  helping them capture their life stories to put together for their families. They would also like the possibility of capturing interviews of the residents on video and/or taking photos of the residents. Interviews would be conducted during business hours, they are open 7 days a week. A brief orientation is required before being assigned to a resident Contact Katie at Beaverdale Estates to get involved in the project at

Botanical Garden – Plant Pot Washer

The Botanical Garden is in need of volunteers to wash plant pots! This is an easy task to learn and one that allows you to put in your ear buds or just get lost in thought while earning Silver Cord hours. It is also a very needed volunteer role!

Lots of pots are used at the Botanical Garden and these need to be sanitized before reusing to prevent the possibility of spreading any disease or contaminates. This is a simple process of brushing out excess dirt, dunking the pot in a cleaning solution and setting it out to dry. Volunteers may also be asked to put away clean pots.

The chemical used to sanitize is Zerotol and it is diluted in water. It is very similar to diluted bleach. Botanical Garden staff will prepare the solution. Rubber gloves and safety glasses are available for use. Staff is happy to discuss the solution composition with anyone who has questions.

This role can be done any day except for Sunday and within these time restrictions.

Weekdays: Be able to arrive no later than 2:30 p.m.

Saturdays: Be able to arrive between 8 and 10 a.m.

Please plan to assist for a minimum of 2 hours. If volunteering only short-term, we ask that volunteers commit to helping a minimum of four hours (over two sessions).

To enquirer about volunteering e-mail Susan Cory at and provide your contact information plus the days and times your are wanting to volunteer.

Susan G. Komen of Iowa – Office Assistant

The Susan G. Komen of Iowa office is in need of volunteer office assistants.  Duties include answering the phones and other administrative tasks as assigned by the Operations and Finance Director. Students can sign up by contacting Tracy Greene at The shift times are flexible, anytime between 9:00a and 5:00p. Weekend and weeknight hours may be available upon request.  For a  detailed job description click the link.  The Susan G. Komen of Iowa office is located at 3850 Merle Hay Road, Urbandale.

Johnston Partnership for a Healthy Community

Volunteers are needed to help serve clients in our food pantry and clothing closet. Volunteers will help clients select food, pack and carry out to their vehicles. Responsibilities will also include restocking shelves, counting/sorting donations and daily cleaning. Volunteers must be at least 16 to volunteer without a parent. First-time volunteers need to arrive 5 minutes early to receive a brief orientation. Shift times: Tuesdays and Thursdays 9am-Noon

Saturdays 10am-2pm.  The Johnston Partnership for a Healthy Community  is located at 5870 Merle Hay Rd Suite D in Johnston, Iowa. To volunteer please sign up through the link  

Questions? Contact Andrea Cook at

Arbor Springs Skilled Care -Elderly Visits

Arbor Springs is a skilled care nursing facility specializing in people with Alzheimer’s or other types of dementia. The are looking for volunteers to visit with residents for 45 min-1 hour.  The visits can include simple conversations with the residents, reading the newspaper/books, ipad games, jigsaw puzzles, craft projects and listening to I-pods.  Interested students can contact the Activity Assistant Teawna Stark at  To learn more check out the Connect With Seniors Video. Arbor Springs is located at 7951 EP True Pkwy in WDM.

Walnut Creek YMCA-Learn and Play Center

The Walnut Creek YMCA is looking for students who are interested in helping with childcare at the Learn and Play Center. This is an ongoing volunteer opportunity with flexible hours making it a great Silver Cord opportunity for busy students. To volunteer please apply through the YMCA website

Iowa Lutheran Hospital – Volunteen Program

Unity Point Health-Iowa Lutheran Hospital-Volunteen Program gives high school students an opportunity to volunteer in a hospital.  Volunteen duties might include making health folders, talking with patients, making floral arrangements and delivering flowers, magazines, and beverages to patients.  To be considered for this opportunity please visit the Unity Point-Iowa Lutheran Hospital-Volunteer webpage For more information please contact Brad Fuglsang at

Valley Volunteen Testimony: I like helping the patients feel better by giving them flowers and magazines. I am learning to work with other people, and also how to be a part of a team.

Children and Family Urban Movement-Supper Club

Children and Family Urban Movement Supper Club provides an evening meal Monday-Saturday for 120-180 adults and children. Many of the guests that come to Supper Club are among the growing number of working poor that live in the metro area.  Each evening 6-10 volunteers are needed from 4:15p-6:16p to help set-up, serve food, and clean-up. To volunteer please contact WesLynn Caldwell at  Children and Family Urban Movement is located at 1548 8th Street in Des Moines.

Operation Christmas Child-Shoe Box Room

Volunteers are needed year round to prepare the gifts for the annual collection which occurs each year third week of November. In addition, volunteers may assist in or host community and church “packing parties” where items are pooled together and gifts are packaged corporately. Hundreds of hours are spent locally preparing items for inclusion in the boxes for these events in and around central Iowa. Candy needs to be bagged. Soaps and washcloths need to be bundled together. Pencils need to be sharpened. School supplies, toys and stuffed animals need to be gathered. Boxes need to be wrapped. Project work of this nature is based out of “The Shoe Box Room” in Urbandale.  Sign up for project work or to organize a packing party by calling Heather Rowley 515-333-1237 or email

Valley Church-The Respite Event/Hand in Hand

Volunteers are needed to spend a little time with a child with special needs during fun safe events.  Duties include setting up, serving as a one-o-one buddy with a child and cleaning up.  Interested students need to e-mail Beth Castile at and she will contact you regarding the dates and times.  The Hand in Hand events usually take place on Saturday’s.

Help a Heart Support Group

Volunteers are needed the second Monday of each month from 6:15p-8:45p  to help with childcare for parents who are attending a support group for children with heart defects.  Volunteers will watching the children, keeping them entertained, taking them to the bathroom if needed and assisting with snacks. This support group meets at the Westview Church, 1155 SE Boone Drive, Waukee.   Help a Heart offers support to families of children with heart defects and it is VERY important that volunteers are healthy. (no coughs, fevers, or illnesses 24 hours before volunteering)  To volunteer please contact Kasey Vermillion at

Catholic Charities-St Joseph Emergency Family Shelter

Volunteers are needed each Saturday and Sunday from 1:00p-3:00p  to help organize donations, clean the shelter and garage, and help with yard work.  Student volunteers must complete and return the attached consent for minor form to participate.  To volunteer contact the Shelter Coordinators, Celeste Egger or Dixie Webb  The St Joseph Emergency Shelter is located at 1535 11th Street in Des Moines.

Volunteer Form

Courage League Sports

Volunteers are needed to serve as  Courage League Sports “Team Mates” to  children and adults not able to go “full speed” due to disability, illness, or emotional challenges.   Team Mate volunteers  offer  minimal to moderate assistance with sports leagues, fitness classes, and special events. The population served consists of toddlers age 2-6,  school-aged youth age 7-18  and adults with special needs.   Volunteers will be helping participants developing new skills, meet new friends, build self-confidence, and have fun!  Courage League Sports is located at 4405 121st Street in Urbandale, Iowa.

Available Shifts:

Date Time
Monday – Thursday: 4:30-6:30 PM Saturday: 9:15 AM – Noon
Monday – Thursday: 5:30-7:30 PM Saturday: 12:15 PM – 3 PM

If interested in volunteering at Courage League Sports, please check out their website or volunteer submission form

For questions or to sign-up directly please email Porshia Perkins: or call 515-421-4020

Susan G. Komen of Iowa –Office Assistant

The Susan G. Komen of Iowa office is in need of volunteer office assistants.  Duties include answering the phones and other administrative tasks as assigned by the Operations Manager.  Students can sign up by contacting Tracy Dubon at The shift times are flexible, anytime between 8:00a and 5:00p. Weekend and weeknight hours may be available upon request.  For a  detailed job description click the link.  The Susan G. Komen of Iowa office is located at 3850 Merle Hay Road, Urbandale.

Office Assistant Description

Botanical Gardens-Green Thumbs Teen Volunteer Corps

The Botanical Gardens in Des Moines is seeking summer volunteers  interested in environmental sciences, speech/public speaking, theater/drama or a combination of all three to serve as Green Thumbs Teen Volunteers.  Green Thumb Volunteers offers multiple opportunities throughout the gardens.  Volunteers are selected through an application/recommendation process.  To apply please use this link   This volunteer opportunity is for students ages 15 and older.

Green Thumbs

 Urban Bicycle Food Ministry-Burrito Rides

The Urban Bicycle Food Ministry goes out on to the streets of Des Moines to provide radical hospitality! We will be riding our bikes into the downtown Des Moines area to provide burritos, peanut butter sandwiches, water, fruit, cookies and bug spray while building a relationship with those who are in need.  To find out more go to the Urban Bicycle Food Ministry Facebook page where the dates and rides are listed.

Students under the age of 18 will need to ride/volunteer with a parent or other responsible adult.

Vine Street Children’s Center-After school volunteer

Is  looking for individuals after school  who are passionate about children and enjoy working with them, playing with them, and caring for their needs!  In order to volunteer  with the children, all volunteers under age 18 will need to bring in a written permission slip from your parent/guardian giving us permission to run a background check. To volunteer please contact Mandy Lechtenberg at

Central Iowa Shelter Services

Central Iowa Shelter Services (CISS) provides free shelter and meals to homeless adults regardless of physical or emotional conditions.  Volunteers are needed in many different ways including the food pantry, clothing closet, food prep and meals, food rescue, and garden help.  For more information check out the CISS volunteer page.  To get involved contact Jorie Hidri at or 515-564-5752

Gigi’s Playhouse-Ongoing Programming Help

GiGi’s Playhouse has volunteer opportunities to leading and/or assisting with programming, serving on fundraising committees, helping on the day of events and fundraisers, & much more! As a helper you will You will help the program host in many ways including greeting, welcoming, and signing in participants. You will engage and assist participants during activities.

Before signing-up all new volunteers must fill out the Volunteer Registration Form (fill out here: and attend a Volunteer Orientation which provides an overview of our organization, programming, events, and fundraising. We want each and every individual, family, and volunteer to have the best possible experience at Gigi’s Playhouse.

Community Youth Concepts- Youth Volunteer Corps

Youth Volunteer Corps of Des Moines (YVC-Des Moines) is a supervised, team-based service-learning program hosted by Community Youth Concepts. We create volunteer opportunities to address community needs in Des Moines and to inspire youth ages 11-18 for a lifetime commitment to service. We strongly believe in Youth VOICE, Youth CHOICE- so students who come to meetings are the ones who choose what projects they want to do, and it is students who plan and implement those projects with the help of an adult facilitator. Students can receive Silver Cord hrs. from attending meetings, since meetings themselves consist of service activity planning and preparation!

Simply visit and fill out the volunteer information request form. We will email you a list of upcoming activities you may be interested in attending. Students can also send an email to and request to be added to our email list. Or, simply show up on a Wednesday for our weekly meetings from 4-5:15 PM!

LCH – HopeKids

This opportunity allows students to assist with Lutheran Church of Hope’s weekend children’s program–HopeKids. HopeKids is a high-energy program for 3 year olds through 5th grade. Student volunteers will help engage kids in worship and breakout activities. This is a fun way to invest in the next generation!  Students can sign up by emailing Lyndsay Korte at

WDM Human Services – Clothing Closet

West Des Moines Human Services, 139 6th Street in West Des Moines, is seeking volunteers in their Clothing Closet to accept donations, sort and straighten items, and assist clients as needed.  Hours are flexible, anytime Monday through Friday between 8 am and 4 pm.  Volunteers must be age 14 or older.  Please contact Mindy Hotovec at or call 222-3663.

Shepherd’s Flock Early Learning Center

The Shepherd’s Flock Early Learning Center has an ongoing need for volunteers to help with the following; inventory children’s books, toys and games; enter books, toys and games into the computer data base, prepare bulletin boards and classroom decorations, assemble books for teachers, assist with teacher prep work, make photocopies, file, help with mailings, help with playground work day.  To volunteer please contact Diane Hensley at 225-1952 or e-mail her at  S.O.V. is located at 3900 Ashworth Road in WDM.

The HCI Giving Tree

The HCI Giving Tree (Hospice of Central Iowa), 3330 100th Street in Urbandale, is seeking volunteers to help sort clothes, accept donations, carry furniture to cars, and assist at the cash register.  Those interested in volunteering must be 16 years of age or older and willing to make a six month commitment.  For additional information go to the website   To volunteer please contact Katie Gosselink at

Wesley Acres Musical Entertainment

The residents at the Wesley Acres retirement home love to listen to live music of all kinds: singing, instrumentals, solos, quartets, old songs, new songs… everything! Stopping by to share your musical talents will brighten their day (and probably yours, too). Click Here for more information or contact Susan Skinner at 515-271-6789 or

Green and Sustainable Clive

Green and Sustainable Clive is dedicated to enhancing the natural environment and ecology of Clive’s parks and green spaces. With the help of the community, Green and Sustainable Clive plans to develop hands-on volunteer initiatives, provide sustainability educational opportunities and support the Walnut Creek Watershed Enhancement.  For more information or to volunteer please contact Jennifer Easler at 515-205-6222 or Flyer

Animal Rescue League

The Animal Rescue League is looking for four students (they must be at least 16) to volunteer a couple of hours each week working with their Behavior Manager program by creating enrichment toys and treats for the dogs and cats in our care. Students will be interviewed, We will be looking for 1 student to take the lead, who will also be willing to teach the next group coming in. We’re asking for a minimum of one semester commitment with the option of staying on a second semester.All students will need to complete our Volunteer Orientation and Dog Companion training, which we will “fast-track” in order to get them started quickly. They will also be asked to complete our volunteer application and pay the $20 one time fee. To volunteer contact Joy Talmon, Volunteer Coordinator at

After School Arts Program (ASAP)

Connects elementary and middle-school students in the heart of the city of Des Moines, Iowa, with enriching arts experiences. Since starting, ASAP has connected more than 800 students with teaching artists in studios ranging from ceramics, painting, and photography to West African drumming, drama, and dance. ASAP succeeds with the help of dedicated volunteers and generous supporters. To get involved, please contact Michelle Bolton King at


DMARC Food Pantry Network

The Des Moines Area Religious Council (DMARC) is an interfaith organization that provides a common means of responding to basic human needs. The DMARC Food Pantry Network—which is health-based and the largest network of its kind in Iowa—consists of 14 separate partnering food pantry sites, three Mobile Food Pantries, and two food warehouses. Volunteers are needed to sort and package food and personal care donations at our distribution warehouse, help with special events, and host pop-up Red Barrel food drives at participating grocery stores throughout Greater Des Moines. To get involved, please contact Shoshana Salowitz, Community Outreach and Volunteer Manager at

Food Bank of Iowa/Back Pack Buddies

The Food Bank of Iowa is a private, not-for-profit organization committed to the mission of alleviating hunger through food distribution, partnership and education. The Food Bank of Iowa strives to meet the critical needs of a diverse population through its network of partner agencies, including food pantries, soup kitchens, homeless shelters, nonprofit day care facilities, residential care centers and child and senior programs. Food Bank of Iowa | Learn About Hunger Hunger in America 2010: Food Bank of Iowa

St. Timothy’s Community Garden

St. Timothy’s Episcopal Church is in need of volunteers to help tend to the community garden.  Tim Goldman, 223-1782 or


Catholic Worker House

Catholic Worker House needs help in food store or volunteer as needed. Location at 1310 7th Street , Des Moines, IA 50314. Help in food store or volunteer as needed 515-243-0765.

Freedom for Youth: 2301 Hickman Road, Des Moines, IA 50310

Volunteers will be working in the garden, laying landscaping materials and cleaning up around the neighborhood. Contact: Esmerelda Kretzu 282-4822 or or website


Contact Information

Rosemary Brandt

Service Learning Coordinator
Learning Resource Center
3550 Mills Civic Parkway
West Des Moines, IA 50265

Cyndi Bonus

Silver Cord Coordinator
Valley High School
3650 Woodland Avenue
West Des Moines, IA 50266