Volunteers at the San Diego Rescue Mission are some of the warmest, kindest, most generous people we know.

Donate Your TimeOur volunteers provide valuable services to our clients. In return they receive the satisfaction of knowing they are personally helping homeless and poor people create positive, lasting change in their lives.

Please note that we are unable at this time to work with court-mandated volunteers.

Due to insurance restrictions, volunteers must be age 16 and older. Are you part of a youth group under this age? We welcome your help with donation drives for urgently needed material items and are very happy to provide a tour of the Mission so you can find out more about our work.

Group Projects

Here are more ideas for your group

Groups (corporate, church, school and others) are always welcome to help with our meal service, assisting in the warehouse, and helping with special events. Please call 619.819.1897 for other ideas or to schedule a specific date.

  • Groups of no more than 5 are welcome to serve lunch or dinner here on site.
  • Larger groups can schedule weekday morning shifts in our warehouse.

Not able to start volunteering immediately? Host a Drive (Urgent Needs, Food, or Hygiene Kits): You can hold a drive and collect needed items at your school, church, place of employment, community center, or neighborhoods-it’s an easy and very significant way to support the Rescue Mission! Thank you for doing your part to help the men, women and children here at the Mission.

Volunteer Process for Individuals

All volunteers, with the exception of those participating in a special event or one-time group volunteer opportunity MUST attend a volunteer orientation and submit an application and go through an on-line background check process at an $18 cost to the individual. Orientations are held every-other month. For non-food service opportunities we ask a 3-6 month commitment, interview, orientation, application and background check. Please call the Volunteer Coordinator to start the process.

Due to the large interest in our volunteer program, volunteer needs and opportunities change monthly and may include:

  • Easter Meal Outreach

    Volunteers are needed for this year’s Easter Meal Outreach on Saturday, March 28. Training begins at 8:30 AM, after which volunteers will be divided up in groups to walk the streets and invite people to the Easter meal later that day. The shift will end at 10:45 AM.

    To volunteer for the event, please fill out this online volunteer form.

  • Groups Needed in Warehouse in City Heights

    • Volunteer hours are between 8:30 a.m. – 2:00 p.m. Monday thru Friday. We ask for a minimum 3 hour shift.
    • Maximum of 20 volunteers per day
    • Youth groups  need one adult supervisor from their organization for every 5 teenagers

    Tasks include:

    1. Sorting and hanging clothes
    2. Sorting housewares
    3. Price Tagging
    4. Folding linens and bed sheets

    So many wonderful donations are coming in at year-end and we certainly need your help getting items sorted and to our clients and our  stores  as soon as possible!

  • Transitional Housing

    One English tutor – Tuesday evenings
    One Tagalog tutor – Friday mornings/afternoons.

  • Nueva Vida Haven

    Assist with bed set up and handing out linens, clothing, hygiene items, 7:15PM – 8:30PM. Women only.

    Dinner service help needed between 6:30PM – 7:15PM, Friday or Saturday in particular.

  • Women & Children’s Center

    Nursery volunteers weekday mornings 8:30-11:30.

    Food service 3:30-5:00 daily.

    Tutors weekday evenings. Would like an individual who can work with mother and child together. Children ages 4-11. Math, reading, science. Bilingual desired.