What precautions are you taking against COVID-19 on site?
Do you verify court-ordered community service hours?
Sorry, we are not able to verify court-ordered community service hours. We can, however, provide documentation of hours for school or similar requests.
I’ve never held a hammer in my life; can I still work onsite?
Yes! We welcome volunteers of all skill levels and provide all the training you’ll need! No previous construction experience is required to volunteer with us.
Please, however, be aware that construction is a physically demanding activity. Plan on getting a good night’s sleep and eating a good breakfast before your build day.
How old do I have to be to volunteer on site?
Volunteers must be at least 16 years old to work on at any of our construction sites, or at our Habitat Stores. Anyone under the age of 18 must be accompanied by an adult throughout their volunteer day. Groups of young adults (under 18) must have one adult (over age 21) per every five youth.
Habitat does not provide childcare at any of our sites.
Are there volunteer orientation sessions? Do I need to attend?
You can check out Open Doors, our monthly volunteer orientation sessions to learn more about our organization and opportunities. Attendance is NOT required before volunteering on our construction sites.
The orientation sessions are recommended for everyone interested in non-construction volunteer positions, and we offer them on the first Thursday of each month from 6:30 to 8:00 PM. To sign up to attend, email, or call 206-866-6783!
Habitat does not provide childcare at the orientation.
What is a typical volunteer day schedule?
Our build sites are typically open to volunteers every Wednesday, Thursday, and Saturday for full day shifts (8:45am-4:00pm).
The schedule for a typical day on a construction site is:
8:45 – 9:00 – Check-in, distribute Personal Protective Equipment
9:00 – 9:15 – Habitat introduction, safety orientation, and description of work assignments
9:15 – Noon – Work under the instruction of Habitat site staff
Noon – 12:45 – Lunch: Please bring your own, if not provided by your group
12:45 to 3:45 – Work under the instruction of Habitat site staff
3:45 – 4:00 – Clean-up and sign out
*Habitat Stores are open to volunteers Tuesday through Saturday, with morning (10am-2pm), afternoon (2pm-6pm), or full day (10am-6pm) shifts available.
How far in advance do I need to schedule a group build day?
Most groups can schedule six weeks in advance. For some groups, such as sponsors or Build Hope groups, we can typically schedule up to 3 months in advance. In general, we advise that all interested groups contact us at least 1 month prior to their desired volunteer day.
Individuals are also encourage to plan ahead, as our sites tend to fill up quickly.
How do I sign up to volunteer for Construction or the Habitat Stores?
All volunteers are required to create a profile on our volunteer scheduling website called Volunteer Hub. We are unable to accept walk-ons to our site, so you MUST be registered for the day prior to volunteering. For additional information on signing up to volunteer, please email us.
Can I come late or leave early?
No. We ask that you stay for the entirety of the shift you signed up for and only reserve a spot if you can be there on time and stay for the whole shift. When people show up late or leave early, it makes it difficult for our supervisors to properly train volunteers and to accomplish the goals for the day. People who arrive late and miss our mandatory safety training will not be able to volunteer.
What should I wear?
Please wear sturdy, close-toed shoes and clothes you don’t mind getting dirty. Also, be aware that much of the work is done outdoors, so bring layers and dress appropriately for the weather including wind, sun, and rain. We will provide you with a hard hat and safety gear.
It's raining! What do I do?
Don’t fret! We typically build rain or shine, but if weather conditions cause safety concerns, then your build day could be canceled. We try to provide as much advance notice as the weather allows, and contact volunteers via email. If you don’t hear from us, bring your rain gear!
What should I bring?
Bring a lunch, water bottle, sunscreen, a hat, and layered clothing for weather changes. Please leave your valuables at home–there is no secure storage at any of our sites. While we provide all the tools you’ll need, you may bring your own hand tools, hardhat, work gloves, or safety goggles (please label with your name). Smoking, alcohol, and radios are not allowed on our sites. We also ask that you do not use cell phones on active construction sites as they are distracting and can cause accidents.
What about lunch?
Lunch is from 12:00 – 12:45pm. It is recommended that you bring your own lunch, as one will not be provided unless otherwise noted. We ask that all volunteers remain on site during lunch, so please plan ahead.
I have to cancel! What do I do?
Login to your volunteer account and you will see your reservation–follow the prompts to cancel. There is also a link to cancel in your build day confirmation email. If you can’t login, please email us and we will cancel the reservation for you.
How can I become a regular volunteer?
If you’re interested in becoming a regular construction volunteer, please register for a build day and talk with your construction site manager about your interest when you volunteer. If you’d like to volunteer regularly at our Habitat Stores, please start by registering for a volunteer orientation.
Are there other ways to volunteer that aren’t construction?
Yes! Even beyond volunteering at our Habitat Stores, we have volunteers who help us with everything from teaching homeownership classes, sharing information at community tabling events, or serving as family support partners, photographers, event planners, data entry specialists, graphic designers, and more! If you’re interested in any of these opportunities, please email us.
How can I get answers to other questions or give my feedback?
We always welcome feedback. Please email us for any questions, concerns, or advice you may have about your volunteer experience.