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Volunteer Opportunities at Hearts

After a tumultuous year, it seems that the COVID-19 vaccination has reignited our hope of reaching the other side of this virus. However, there have been many lasting effects from the pandemic, most notably an increase in the number of individuals and families in need of assistance. As a nonprofit organization serving those most at-risk in our community, Hearts for the Homeless relies on our volunteers to help us carry out our programs and reach as many individuals in need as we are able. We have a variety of jobs and tasks for those who want to share their free time and volunteer with us.

“Let all that you do be done in love.”  1 Corinthians 16:14

Why Volunteer?

Volunteering gives you an opportunity to connect to your community and be a part of it. There are also practical benefits such as expanding your network, boosting your social skills, taking on a challenge, and gaining valuable resume experience. Volunteering can help build confidence by giving you the opportunity to step outside your comfort zone, make friends, and have fun. All while supporting a great cause!

Most importantly though, the time you spend volunteering helps change the lives of those less fortunate for the better. We’ve seen volunteers from every walk of life including retirees, students, business owners, groups, associations, and employees from other companies. No matter where you are in life, we could use your help!

“For we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.” Ephesians 2:10

Kitchen Assistant

Right now, we most need volunteers in the kitchen helping us prepare food for the Mobile Soup Kitchen that operates 5 nights a week. Kitchen Assistants help our resident Hearts Cook Tuesdays and Thursdays to prepare sandwiches and hot meals for our Volunteer Mobile Crews to distribute to our poor and homeless clients. Volunteers may also be asked to package desserts, put together food bags, or organize the food pantry.

Thrift Store

Hearts Thrift Shop volunteers help out at the 890 Tonawanda store with various daily tasks related to maintaining a tidy store, in addition to assisting customers by answering questions or finding items. Hearts Thrift Shop is open Monday through Saturday from 10am to 5pm.

Mobile Crew

Hearts uses 5 separate Mobile Crew Teams; each volunteer crew member goes out on the same night each week. The Mobile Crew Teams meet at our center at 890 Tonawanda St and prepare the pre-prepared food for transport. Together, the team travels aboard The Mobile Soup Kitchen and takes the food to the Erie County/Buffalo Library Downtown to serve the homeless and poor who will be waiting in line to receive their meal. 

In addition to giving out meals, volunteers may also be asked to help hand out clothing, toiletries, and various other items that they need to get through each day. Volunteers also manage the sign-in sheets for clients and speak to clients in order to find out additional needs or give advice on shelters and other resources. All team members share in clean-up before we all return to the center together.

“God is not unjust; he will not forget your work and the love you have shown him as you have helped his people and continue to help them.”   Hebrews 6:10

Food Pantry Assistant

Food Pantry Volunteers assist our Food Pantry Coordinator with everything pertaining to food distribution including stocking canned goods on the shelves, putting together food bags, food set up on the days the pantry is open for distribution, handing out groceries to the community families, assisting the families with product decision, and even helping them carry food to their car, along with clean up. Volunteers also spend time talking to those who are receiving groceries from our pantry to encourage them, pray with them, and help them have a good day.

Mobile Food Pantry

Mobile Food Pantry Volunteers assist with everything pertaining to food distribution in a mobile setup. This includes packing up the truck with supplies and tables to set up a mobile pantry, stocking tables with the food that is delivered from the food bank, overseeing the sign-in sheet for those who are receiving food from the pantry, handing out food to the community families, assisting people with putting food in their carry bags, assisting the families with product decision, helping them carry food to their car, and clean-up and break down of the mobile pantry. Volunteers also spend time talking to those who are receiving groceries from our mobile pantry to encourage them, pray with them, and help them have a good day.

“And let us not grow weary of doing good, for in due season we will reap, if we do not give up.” Galatians 6:9

If you are interested in volunteering with Hearts, download an application form corresponding with the position of your choice. Once you have filled them out, you can send them back to us via email at or USPS to Hearts for the Homeless, PO Box 437, Buffalo, NY 14223.