As the summer rolls in, so do the opportunities to give back to the community. Summer Fridays off from work or just a beautiful day outside make for great moments to take time for others who need support in the area. From community clean up days to volunteering at a race, there are plenty of volunteer opportunities in Essex County to meet others and support our neighbors at the same time. Read on to learn all about volunteer opportunities in Essex County for this summer.
Community Build with Alexandra’s Playground | 690 East 23rd Street, Paterson
June 26th, 7:45AM – 3PM
All children deserve the opportunity for safe and active play. Alexandra’s Playground is committed to just that. Volunteers are needed to help the playground builders sign in for the day and to play games with young children. Volunteers will be needed from 7:45AM to 11:30AM, though the event runs until 3:00PM. Please be sure to wear a mask and dress for either rain or shine. Learn more about this event here.
Community Clean-Up Day | Cutler Street, Newark
June 27th, 10AM
Brothers Building A Better Nation will embark on a community clean-up day at the end of June. The clean-up will start at 10AM. The organization will provide bags and gloves. This is an opportunity to clean up the city and support BBABN, a non-profit specializing in the assistance of Black and Latino men who have criminal records or are at risk of becoming incarcerated. Learn more about this event here.
Black Men Run | Flood’s Hill, South Orange
This event is all about running for a good cause. Black Men Run is hosting the second day of the Meeting Essential Needs with Dignity (MEND) Running Festival. Participate in a 5K or 10K to help bring healthy food to the food insecure of Essex County. Learn more about this event here.
Human Needs Food Pantry Weekend Donation Day | 9 Label Street, Montclair
July 9th, 10AM – 12PM
The Human Needs Food Pantry weekend donation day is set for July 9th. Accepted donations include both non-perishable food items and non-food items such as clothing, bedding, shoes, diapers, wipes, period supplies, and toiletries. Full list of items and guidelines are on the website. Learn more about this event here. You can sign up to volunteer here.
Pitties + Pints | 538 Broad Street, Newark
August 13th, 12PM – 4PM
Head over to Newark Local Beer to meet a potential new furry best friend. The Associated Humane Societies will be hosting a meet and greet with dogs that are up for adoption from 12PM-4PM. Learn more about this event here.
Verona Labor Day Classic | Lake Avenue, Verona
September 5th, 9AM
The 40th Annual Verona Labor Day Classic is set to start on Monday, September 5th at 9AM. Participants can pick between a 1-mile fun run or 5K race with all proceeds from the race supporting local charities and scholarships. Volunteers are needed as the race is completely volunteer-led. Learn more about this event here.
5K Race to Wellness: Day for Kids | Branch Brook Park Drive, Newark
The Boys and Girls Club of Newark is set to host a day of health, wellness, and fun. In its second year, the event will include the 5K race, games, activities, and more — all to support the work Boys and Girls Club does daily. This fun event is open to all ages. Learn more about this event here.
The Valerie Fund Walk/5K | Bloomfield Avenue, Verona
The Valerie Fund was created to help support parents who have lost children to cancer or are currently fighting the disease. To raise funds for their efforts, the annual walk/5K run will be hosted on September 17th in Verona. Participants can register online to run or volunteer at the race. Learn more about this event here.
STOP for Nikhil 5K | West Orange
Every year, dozens of people are killed or seriously injured in traffic accidents. The annual STOP for Nikhil raises awareness about this issue in New Jersey. Runners can join the race in person or virtually. Volunteers are needed for the in-person race. Learn more about this event here.
Human Needs Food Pantry | 9 Label Street, Montclair
The Human Needs Food Pantry is always in need of volunteers to serve the community. Volunteers are needed to pack fruits and vegetables, pick up food from suppliers, sort donated items, and deliver food to homebound clients. Those interested in volunteering should fill out the interest form here. In addition to volunteering, individuals can host a drive for needed items. For more information on how to start a drive, click here.
ANSWERS Moving Forward Inc. | 712 Springfield Avenue, Newark
ANSWERS Moving Forward (AMF) is a non-profit organization created to support men in need of temporary shelter. The organization works toward re-entry to society while providing a clean, safe environment. AMF is always in need of donations to support its guests. Items most needed include clothing and toiletries. To organize a donation, drop-off, or to learn more, email A.MovingForward@ymail.com.
FOMTAS + The Montclair Township Animal Shelter | 77 N Willow Street
Friends of the Montclair Township Animal Shelter (FOMTAS) is an organization that helps financially support homeless animals of the Montclair Township Animal Shelter. Volunteers are needed regularly for a variety of activities, including supporting social media + photography for fundraising opportunities as well as helping facilitate the Paws to Read program, where pets hear stories read aloud to them by local children. The shelter also always needs extra hands. You can find more info and links to the application forms on the FOMTAS website.