Volunteer in the USA

Experience life in a native American community or in the verdant “hollers” of Appalachia. Unique and meaningful community service opportunities await you within the borders of the United States! As a volunteer in the USA, you work one-on-one with local people on education, labor, childcare and cultural projects for a week of service, learning and fun. In the mountain shadows of the Rockies or Appalachians, you contribute your time and skills, and enter a world unknown to tourists – acquainting you deeply with the spirit of these soulful communities. Live and learn like a “local” in one of  our USA community service programs:  Volunteer in Appalachia – West Virginia. Volunteer on the Blackfeet Reservation in Montana.

FAQs: What You Need To Know

Your team leader is a Global Volunteers alumni or member of staff who has completed our comprehensive team leader training, and is skilled in leading diverse groups of people. All of our team leaders are certified in CPR, and have served on multiple service programs – some up to 20 times! Further, they’re evaluated by the volunteers on each program, and must achieve an established level of performance in order to continue leading Global Volunteers teams. You’ll receive background information on your team leader approximately four weeks before your service program begins.

We’ve responded to community needs throughout the USA since 1999. We currently focus our efforts on areas of extreme poverty – such as West Virginia’s Fayette County and the Blackfeet Nation in Montana.  Isolated from the general public in sparsely populated states, these two communities are not well-known. The poverty observed by visitors, however, is far from the complete story. Working with grateful people as a volunteer in the USA for just one week, you learn about their unique culture and history – while providing significant community service to children and elders. Review a standard USA volunteer schedule here.



    Labor projects are plentiful: You might help plant a community garden one day, move office furniture the next, paint a classroom, and then wrap up your week helping to erect a Sun Dance lodge in Montana.  In West Virginia, you might help rehabilitate dilapidated and energy inefficient homes for elders or low income families in economically devastated rural coalfield communities.


    This is a high-energy assignment! Help supervise field trips, play and direct games, read story books, or teach a lesson on a topic of your choice.


    Do you enjoy bingo, poker, swapping stories or nail polishing? Assist the activities director at the elder care center with stimulating projects and visit one-on-one with Blackfeet elders. Or, help prepare, serve and deliver meals at the assisted living center on the reservation.


    Lend your compassion and reassurance to children and teens who are in protective custody during a family crisis. You help provide a serene environment with stories, movies and games, and assist with meal preparation and clean up.  When no children are in residence, volunteers with social work, nutrition, first aid, psychology and related expertise can help train the employees – most of whom have no specialized or professional training.


    Sometimes you can help teens and adults learn the basics and improve their computer literacy so they can successfully compete in college and in job-seeking.  In West Virginia, you might help students study for their GED tests so they can enter the world of work.


    On some programs, you can use your professional skills to present workshops, in office assistance, or for specific requests such as substance abuse treatment and recovery. You might help purge and organize files, provide internet research assistance, advise on diabetes prevention and fitness, or teach young entrepreneurs basic marketing and business principles.

Volunteer in the USA Snapshot

1 week programs available

Fees From:

Projects Include:
Childcare, Teaching, Labor

Local time:

USA Volunteer Food & Lodging

Your health and safety as a volunteer in the USA are our top priorities. Lodging is dormitory style in community facilities, with large rooms and shared bathrooms divided by gender. Smaller private rooms may be available for families with young children if requested in advance.

  • Bunk beds with provided bedding
  • Shared bathrooms with showers
  • Community TV room
  • Industrial kitchen for meal preparation
  • Wi-fi available at some work sites

Breakfast is self-serve at the lodging facility, with packed or provided lunch at the work sites. Evening meals are prepared by a local cook at the lodging facility. Food is typical American fare – meat, potatoes, salads and soups. Strict vegetarian and other restrictive diets may not be easily accommodated. Local water is safe; bottled water is available.

“The volunteers bring their skills, insights, and helping hands to the reservation. But, most important, they bring friendship, curiosity, and compassion. We work together to close the gap of understanding between the Indian and White cultures, and it’s very good.”

“What I love most about providing this service opportunity for my students is that on the reservation, we’re affectionately known as “the Globals.” People seek us out and share stories of their lives, their history, and their challenges. Each of my students learned a tremendous amount, and were humbled by the generosity and openness of our hosts.”

“They’re a hard-working group – those Global Volunteers. We really appreciate everything they do for us. But it’s not all work all day. We have some good times, too. They know how to laugh and joke as much as we do. Global Volunteers is part of our community.”

“The ladies at the front desk at the community college taught us how to say “white woman” in the Blackfeet language – Napi Anki (Na bee ah gee) and “white man” – Napi Kaan (Napigwan). They were patient, and sincerely interested in sharing their language. If you care enough to reach out, you’re rewarded with so much generosity and kindness.”

“One small gesture followed by another and another- eventually a basis for trust and understanding.  The combined and incremental efforts of all Global Volunteers over time truly makes the lasting difference.”

Be The Change.

Through important, full-day volunteer assignments and free-time activities, you learn about the Blackfeet Nation and the significant ways you improve children’s and elders’ lives. Our time-tested and proven philosophy of service ensures your efforts help advance the host community’s development vision and goals. You contribute to genuine development projects, and in doing so, you’re accepted as family. Our commitment to work in partnership on long-term community projects enables you, in just a short time, to serve as a critical link in a chain of volunteer support spanning three decades.