Hands On Nashville’s 2019 Guide to Holiday Volunteer Opportunities

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Looking for ways to give back to the community this holiday season? We’ve got you covered. Check out the volunteer opportunities below, followed by a list of several of our partners’ holiday in-kind needs too! Thank you for your support of Middle Tennessee’s nonprofits.

To view even more volunteer opportunities, visit our calendar.

2019 Holiday Volunteer Opportunities

Be Santa’s little helper and an event guide
Cheekwood Estate and Gardens
Minimum age: 16
When: Nov. 27 through Jan. 5

Celebrate the holiday season by serving at Cheekwood’s magical Holiday Lights event. The gardens are transformed into a winter wonderland designed to create an unforgettable, immersive, and engaging experience that has become a favorite Nashville holiday tradition. Volunteers help as event guides, Santa’s helper, art activity host, and more. Christmas cookies, hot chocolate, bottled water, and hand warmers are provided.

Wrap Christmas presents at Parnassus Books
Book’em
Minimum age: 18
When: Nov. 29 through Dec. 23

Each holiday season, Book’em partners with Parnassus Books to provide gift wrappers in the store. Book’em volunteers wrap customers’ books for free, and tips are accepted for their service, with all proceeds benefitting Book’em and their mission to bring kids and books together.

Warm up your vocal cords and carol for a cause with Fannie Battle
Fannie Battle Day Home for Children
Minimum age: 18, or 12 months and older with an adult
When: Dec. 1 through Dec. 24

Caroling for Kids is a creative and fun way to raise money and awareness for Fannie Battle. Volunteers can participate in traditional caroling, or through the new initiative, digital caroling, where volunteers can raise money online through JustGiving’s platform. These events make a huge impact in helping Fannie Battle continue to provide high-quality, affordable childcare, as well as programs dedicated to empowering families.

Support veterans by volunteering at the Building Lives Christmas Sale
Building Lives
Minimum age: 18, or 16 with an adult
When: Dec. 3 through Dec. 7

During the Building Lives Christmas Sale, shelves are stocked with toys for sale, and smiling faces are needed to help run the sale. Volunteer duties include operating a cash register, bagging and counting purchases, helping load purchases into customers’ vehicles, and keeping products stocked and orderly. All net proceeds go directly to the veterans served by Building Lives.

Direct and cheer runners at Rudolph’s Red Nose Run
Needlink Nashville
Minimum age: 18, or 16 with an adult
When: Saturday, Dec. 7

Cheer runners, help at water stations and snack tables, and generally make festive fun for runners and walkers. Volunteers will be encouraged to take photos of participants as they pass by. This event is rain or shine, so volunteers are encouraged to wear their warm, merry best in the spirit of holiday fun, and stay after the race for the Nashville Christmas Parade. NeedLink Nashville provides basic needs to people in times of crisis by providing short-term assistance and links to other resources.

Offer encouragement and event support at the Jingle Bell Run
Arthritis Foundation, Southeast Region, Tennessee
Minimum age: 13, or 8 with an adult
When: Saturday, Dec. 7

Before the Arthritis Foundation’s signature race, help organizers set up, register runners, and, afterward, assist with cleanup. The Arthritis Foundation’s Jingle Bell Run is a festive race for charity where participants can strut their stuff in their favorite holiday costume and feel good about doing good.

Act as an Angel Tree liaison at local malls with the Salvation Army
Salvation Army
Minimum age: 15, certain opportunities 12 with an adult
When: Ongoing though Dec. 20

Give out and document Angels and who they are assigned to, process gifts as donors return their gift bags filled with presents, and locate and distribute gifts to Angel Tree families before the holidays begin. The Salvation Army has opportunities to serve with the Angel Tree program at multiple locations this holiday season, with flexible hours available.

Deliver hot meals on Christmas Day
Nashville CARES
Minimum age: 18
When: Wednesday, Dec. 25

Spend two hours of Christmas Day delivering meals to those who need them. Delivery drivers will be picking up routes and hot meals to deliver to client homes all in a similar area. Nashville CARES is the premier caregiver in the region for treating clients living with, or at risk for, HIV/AIDS.

Be a Holiday Hero with Youth Villages
Youth Villages
Minimum age: 18, or 5 with an adult
When: Ongoing

Youth Villages has individually scheduled opportunities to spread holiday cheer through a gift drive, collecting donated presents, decorating porches for kids in foster care, stuffing holiday stockings, and more.

2019 Holiday In-Kind Needs

Many of Hands On Nashville’s Community Partners accept donated items. Here’s a holiday wishlist for several of our partners. To donate items, contact the agency directly and please let the agencies know that Hands On Nashville sent you.

American Red Cross
Contact:
Tonya Glasgow, Tonya.glasgow@redcross.org, 615-393-2500
Needs: Blank holiday cards and envelopes that deployed service members can send back home.
How to donate: Please send sets of blank cards/envelopes to:
American Red Cross
Tonya Glasgow
2201 Charlotte Ave., Nashville TN, 37203

Book’em
Contact:
Stacey Vanyo, stacey@bookem-kids.org, 615-255-1820
Website: bookem-kids.org/donate/
Needs: Book donations of new and like-new books through book drives or their charity list on Amazon.
How to donate: Please call 615-255-1820 to schedule a drop-off time. Donations can be brought to the office at 161 Rains Avenue, Nashville TN, 37203. Book’em is located inside the Nashville Public Television building.

FiftyForward
Contact:
Robin Johnson, rjohnson@fiftyforward.org, 615-743-3424
Needs: FiftyForward is looking for holiday gifts for older adults served by Supportive Care programs. Donors will be provided with an individualized wish list and asked to purchase items valued at approximately $100.

Additionally, FiftyForward appreciates:

• Commercially available, boxed snack cakes for distribution with Thanksgiving and Christmas day meal deliveries.

• Single-serve canned goods with pop-tops for seniors’ emergency food needs via the Fresh/Meals on Wheels program.

• Donations to fill the daily needs closet, which the organization uses to distribute items to low-income seniors it serves: Toilet paper, paper towels, cleaning supplies, and basic toiletries.

How to donate: Please call or e-mail in advance to confirm quantities needed and to arrange for dropoff of items. Items may generally be delivered to the FiftyForward Patricia Hart Building at 174 Rains Ave., Monday through Friday, from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.

The Heimerdinger Foundation
Contact: volunteer@hfmeals.org or (615) 730-5632
Needs: three vegetable peelers, two box graters, two zesters, two spiralizers, latex gloves of all sizes, gallon size ziplock bags, sharpies, colored pens, four full-size hotel pans, brazier with lid, stock pot with lid.
How to donate: Contact The Heimerdinger Foundation for more information.

Preston Taylor Ministries
Contact:
Bethany Jones, bethany@prestontaylorministries.org, 615-963-3996
Needs: Items ($5-10) to stock the stores for Wrapping Parties, including:

• Gifts for mothers, grandmothers, aunts, etc.: jewelry, body sprays, lotions, soaps, hair accessories, frames, trinkets, holiday decorations, scarves, nail polish, candles, etc.

• Gifts for fathers, grandfathers, uncles, etc.: neckties, bowties, hats, baseball caps, sports paraphernalia (Titans, Predators, Grizzlies, Sounds), watches, wallets, cologne, tools, flash lights.

• Gifts for children: toys, baby toys, cars, action figures, baby dolls, stuffed animals, bouncy balls, party favors, bubbles, coloring books, sports equipment, games (traditional and electronic), puzzles, movies, etc.

• Additional ideas: books, coffee cups, mugs, gloves, mittens, beanies, sunglasses, socks, slippers, umbrellas.

How to donate: Please contact Bethany at bethany@prestontaylorministries.org before dropping off. Deliveries should be brought to 4014 Indiana Ave., Nashville TN, 37209.

Youth Villages
Contact:
Julie Abbott, julie.abbott@youthvillages.org, 615-250-7266
Needs: Holiday stockings filled with hygiene items; new toys, games, books, journals/pens for teens; nonperishable food and grocery gift cards for holiday food baskets.
How to donate: Please drop all items off by Dec. 6 at 3310 Perimeter Hill Dr., Nashville TN, 37211.

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