8 More Volunteer Ideas in Hawai‘i

This holiday season, reach out and help those in need.
A volunteer works on an aircraft in the Pacific Aviation Museum's restoration shop crew.
Photo: Courtesy Pacific Aviation Museum


As an addition to our December issue’s feature “23 Ways to Volunteer,” out now in our digital store and on newsstands next week, we tracked down even more ways to give back to the community, from sheltering homeless families to virtually flying planes.


Bishop Museum

Become an exhibit guide, assist with flower arranging or help out at special events, by doing stuff such as face painting or way finding. With its ever-changing collections and the opportunity to interact with international crowds, Bishop Museum is an ideal venue for volunteers who love to learn. There are varying time commitments depending on the position. Submit an application, waiver and background check form in order to be considered. bishopmuseum.org/hr/volunteer.html


Blood Bank of Hawai‘i

One hour of your time can save up to three lives, and all you really have to do is lie down and squeeze a toy every few seconds. Sure, donating blood might make some people squeamish, but Hawai‘i’s blood supply needs constant restocking and not everyone is qualified to donate, which makes the need for donors even greater. If you are unable to donate but still want to help, consider becoming a volunteer. Volunteers monitor donors after they have given blood to make sure they are feeling OK, call donors to confirm their appointments, give out refreshments to donors and help with other tasks. Submit a volunteer form to wmokiao@bbh.org or call 848-4734. bbh.org/about-bbh/volunteer.html


Family Promise of Hawai‘i

This organization helps motivated families with children find homes and facilitates temporary housing with host congregations. Families are provided assistance in escaping homelessness and, once they have a place to live, given household items they might need, such as beds, kitchenware and bathroom items. Family Promise of Hawai‘i is open 365 days a year, and volunteers are needed to help out with a variety of tasks, including yard and office work and reading to children. You can also bring meals and donated items. Call 548-7478 for the Honolulu family center or 261-7478 for the Kailua one. You can also send an email to volunteer coordinator Soteria Moli at volunteer@familypromisehawaii.org. familypromisehawaii.org/volunteers


Hawaiian Humane Society

Photos: Courtesy Hawaiian Humane Society

If you love animals and can spare three hours a week, consider volunteering at the Hawaiian Humane Society. You’ll receive specialized training to help with adoptions, dog washing, dog massage (really!), pet visitation and events. Volunteers must commit to at least three months. If you want to skip the training, there are positions available for adoption events, foster care, shelter education, community networking and more. hawaiianhumane.org/volunteer.html


Honolulu Museum of Art

You know those friendly people who check you in at Art After Dark? And the ones who greet you at Bank of Hawai‘i Family Sunday? Those are volunteers. The museum’s volunteer program covers everything from exhibition openings to fundraising events, and you only have to work a minimum of 10 hours per year to get all kinds of insider access. There are positions available at Spalding House and the Art School, too. Learn more by emailing volunteers@honolulumuseum.org or by calling 532-8737. The museum also accepts docents. honolulumuseum.org/5282


Kōkua Hawaiʻi Foundation

The goal of this nonprofit is to connect students and children with the environment to foster a lifelong love of the ʻāina. Some of the programs in which Kōkua has volunteer opportunities are ʻĀina in Schools and Plastic Free Hawaiʻi. kokuahawaiifoundation.org/volunteer


Pacific Aviation Museum Pearl Harbor

Teach museumgoers how to fly planes virtually as a flight simulator air boss, or become a restoration crewmember and actually get your hands on some of the museum’s aircraft. No experience is necessary, so this is a great opportunity to explore what might become your new favorite hobby. Docents and tour guides are also needed, as well as volunteers in other areas. Volunteers must be at least 16 years old and fill out an application form by contacting Ashley Sands at 445-9189 or ashley.sands@pacificaviation.org. pacificaviationmuseum.org/supportus/volunteer


Papahana Kuaola

Connect Hawai‘i’s past with a sustainable future with Papahana Kuaola. The group is all about creating quality education programs that are focused on the cultural and natural history of the Islands, environmental restoration and economic sustainability. Every third and fourth Saturday of the month is a community workday with all ages welcome, though it can be hard work. On third Saturdays, restore the health and structure of He‘eia Stream through plant propagation, weeding, mulching and planting. On fourth Saturdays, help maintain a lo‘i kalo. Both activities take place morning until noon, but volunteers are not required to stay the whole time. They should, however, bring plenty of water, snacks, sunscreen, bug repellent, gloves, shoes and clothes that will get dirty. papahanakuaola.com/index.php/get-involved


Read More Stories by Katrina Valcourt