Volunteers are the heart and soul of Open Arms. From preparing medically tailored meals in our state-of-the-art kitchen to delivering our nourishing food to our critically ill clients, every aspect of our operations is made possible because of the incredible dedication of our volunteers.
Join us in making a profound difference for our neighbors living with life-threatening illnesses. We have a wide variety of opportunities and will work with you to find the perfect fit for your skills, interests, and availability.
How to Get Started
Becoming a volunteer at Open Arms is easy! Your first step is to fill out a Volunteer Orientation Request to reserve your spot at an in-person or virtual training. (If you’re under the age of 16, please see our age requirements to learn how to begin.) Once you complete training, you can volunteer as frequently as you’d like.
Shifts are available six days a week, morning through evening, and are at least two hours long. You’ll be able to easily schedule your shifts with our online VolunteerHub, and you can try out several volunteer roles to find a good fit.
Join the 1hr orientation
Sign up for a shift
Ways to Help
In the Kitchen
Prepare, portion, and package food — no culinary skills necessary! This is a great setting to hang out with other volunteers, pick up tips and tricks from our kitchen staff, and be enveloped in amazing kitchen smells. Shifts are available six days a week, morning through evening, and are at least two hours long.
Interact with clients and see the impact of our work by delivering meals directly to our clients! Pick up your route around 11am, then deliver food to clients at 4–8 locations in the Twin Cities geographic area of your choice. Friends and kids of all ages welcome! Deliveries happen Mondays through Fridays and are usually 1–2 hours long.
At the Kitchen of Opportunities (KOO)
Open Arms is happy to offer volunteer opportunities at our second kitchen, the Kitchen of Opportunities (KOO)! At KOO, you will be preparing and packaging meals for homebound and elderly Minnesotans through our partnership with Meals on Wheels. Located at 3025 4th Avenue South, KOO is great place for volunteers who are task-oriented and enjoy staying busy.
At Our Open Farms
Grow tasty veggies for our kitchen and meet new people. From April to November, help us plant, prune, weed, and harvest at our multiple urban gardens throughout Minneapolis and St. Paul. Youth as young as 6 are welcome when accompanied by an adult!
In the Office
Be the smiling face of Open Arms as you greet visitors and callers at our reception desk! We are especially looking for committed volunteers who are available once per week.
Volunteers can now reserve a spot for a Buddy to join them on their scheduled shift with no additional orientation required! Please read the information below carefully.
- You will accompany your Buddy during the entire shift.
- Once your Buddy has completed their first shift, they will be able to sign up for volunteer shifts on their own!
- Please limit to 2 Buddy Pass requests per shift.
- Your Buddy will be required to sign our Liability Waiver on-site and follow all OAM Food Safety/COVID-19 protocols.
Before we confirm your reservation, please email our volunteer department the following four items:
- Buddy’s Full Name
- Buddy’s Email Address
- Buddy’s Proof of Vaccination
- Which Shift(s) you are requesting
(You may provide more than one option — please see the note below.)
Important Note: We are still working with limited numbers of volunteers per shift. If your Buddy Pass exceeds the available number of volunteer spots for that shift, we will request that you choose another date. Thank you for understanding!
We welcome kids ages 6 to 16 with some conditions and special circumstances. Learn more and sign up for a youth or parent/guardian orientation.