individual volunteer opportunities


People Serving People is proud of and grateful for the community of dedicated volunteers who’ve supported the shelter and our guests in the four decades since we first opened. As the COVID pandemic has required us all to change the ways we live, it has also reshaped the volunteer program. While many of the ways we have welcomed volunteers in the past are less possible now (such as large-group volunteering or hosting different kinds of close-contact social events), we are grateful to those who continue to show up in spite of difficult circumstances, and to those who we know are eager to come back when health and safety allow.

Questions about volunteering? Contact volunteer programs staff at or 612-277-0246.


Meal Program Volunteering (located at 614 S 3rd St, Minneapolis)

Provide direct support to families and to shelter operations by helping ensure families receive their meals on time, whether served in our dining hall or to families in their rooms, both at our downtown shelter location. Volunteers partner with staff to bring hot meals to all families in shelter, ensuring every adult and child at People Serving People has access to nutritious meals that meet their dietary needs.

Meals shifts occur three times a day every day, including weekends and holidays. Shifts are 7:30-9:30am, 11:30-1:30pm, and 4:30-6:30pm. Weekday lunches are currently served in the dining hall for seated dining or takeaway, while all other meals are brought to families in their rooms. Priority is given to volunteers who can commit to a regular schedule of at least two shifts per month for at least three months.

If you have questions or are interested in getting scheduled, please let us know at

Early Childhood Program Volunteering (multiple locations)

Volunteers teachers in the Early Childhood Development Program or at the Center of Excellence, working 1-1 or in small groups with children and providing general classroom support. Each volunteer is placed in a specific age-group classroom (Infants, Toddlers, or Preschool), and provides general childcare and supervision, age-appropriate engagement and entertainment, and serves as a positive role models for kids. Prospective volunteers should be comfortable working independently under the direction of teachers, should be able to lift at least 50lbs and move with children, and maintain energy and a high level of patience throughout each shift. Volunteers are also required to complete a basic background check paid for by People Serving People. Shifts are available Monday through Friday in the morning (9am-12pm) or in the afternoon/early evening depending on the location. Prospective volunteers should contact to get scheduled or learn more.

K-12 Tutoring and Enrichment

Volunteers work one-on-one or in small groups supporting teachers in the K12 program as they lead activities for kids ages 5-18 (majority 5-12) and provide general classroom support. Programming in K12 focuses on social and emotional learning, and offers additional academic support to children as needed or desired. Volunteers are primarily expected to casually play with/spend time with kids and keep them engaged in activities in the classroom. Effective K12 volunteers will be patient and comfortable in an unstructured classroom environment, proactive about engaging with kids and drawing them into activities (rather than staying on the sidelines/waiting for kids to come to them). Volunteers are required to complete a basic background check paid for by People Serving People. Shifts run 2:30-7:00 M-F during the school year, and 12:30-5:30 M-F during the summer. Prospective volunteers should contact to interview or learn more


People Serving People has previously welcomed volunteers for a wide range of activities, including the following:

  • Resident Resources Assistant
  • Reading Partner/Roving Reader
  • Self-Defense Class Teacher
  • Mock Interviewer/Resume Reviewer
  • Building Beautification/Housekeeping
  • Alcoholics Anonymous Meeting Leader
  • Technology Center Volunteer
  • Academic Mentoring Volunteer

We have also welcomed church groups, school groups, and work or professional groups for one-time projects such as hanging holiday lights or repainting our dining hall. Partner organizations have also volunteered via consulting projects related to workplace culture, website development, organizational tax structure, and more. Due to the ongoing pandemic, in-person group volunteering is unfortunately unlikely to be available at this time.

For any questions related to volunteering, please contact our Volunteer Programs team at or call us at 612-277-0246.


Create a VolunteerHub profile to see current opportunities

Check-out more volunteer opportunities at our Center of Excellence site in the Phillips neighborhood by clicking here.