Volunteer Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Due to high levels of interest in volunteering, you are required to register with our volunteer team ahead of time. Click here to volunteer individually, with a group, or with your family.

In all cases, we ask that you register at least two weeks in advance.

For safety reasons, all children present during a volunteer shift must be at least 5 years old. Volunteers under 18 years old must have a chaperone and a signed waiver form with them when they volunteer.

I’m a middle/high school student. How can I get more involved?

You can join the Teen Leadership Corps,which gives young people in the Boston area an opportunity to make an important difference in their communities.

1 adult per every 3 elementary schoolers, 1 adult per every 5 middle schoolers, 1 adult per every 8-10 high schoolers.
Our warehouse is able to accommodate groups of 25 students plus chaperones, or up to 100 adults. For large group inquiries of 50 or more volunteers, please speak with a member of our staff directly.
No. Only adult chaperones who are not in the high school program apply.
Please mention this when you fill out our online registration form. A staff member will contact you and help you work out the details. Please keep in mind that although we may not have shifts open for you to complete all of your requirements, we will do our best to help you with what you need. Volunteers under 18 years of age must have a chaperone volunteering with them.
Yes, our Giving Corps program may be perfect for you.
Due to safety regulations we have to evaluate all situations individually, but we are happy to try and accommodate special needs. To discuss your needs, please contact Mo Reilly, Manager of Organizational Initiatives and Planning at mreilly@cradlestocrayons.org or 617-779-4743.
Volunteers will be working with donations from around the state of Massachusetts, so we cannot guarantee that items have not come into contact with peanuts or other items. Please keep in mind that donations may have been in a basement or attic—it is common for volunteers to be in contact with dust or dirt.
Yes, we do require that all groups pre-register at least one week in advance of their volunteer date. Groups will receive a pre-registration link.
When you arrive, please see a staff member inside to help you register or find your pre-printed nametag. Any staff member in purple can assist you at this time. If you are accompanied by volunteers under 18, please give your waiver form to a staff member upon arrival.
Volunteers are responsible for providing their own lunch. The facility has a water cooler and a small kitchenette with a refrigerator. Please let us know if you are planning on eating lunch in our space.

We have two preferred partners for meal delivery: Bertucci’s of Newton (617-244-4900) and Bakers’ Best Catering (617-332-4588). Each of these organizations will generously donate a percentage of your total bill to support our programs.

Yes, we strongly encourage volunteers to clean out their closets prior to their volunteer visit.  Student and community groups are required to host a drive prior to their visits. When you arrive at the warehouse, bring donations through the front door or to our loading dock located on Life St. A member of our team will help you unload at the loading dock before you begin your volunteer shift.  Please do not leave donations on the dock unattended. 
Please wear closed-toed shoes and clothing that can get dirty. The warehouse can be warmer or cooler based on the weather outside, so we recommend bringing layers that you can remove during your shift.