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12 Ways to Be a Good Nashvillian

Shop, eat, hike — these twelve organizations offer a chance to serve the community in ways you may not have expected. (March 2017)

Written By:  Jade Spilka

Photographers:  Nashville Lifestyles Staff

As Nashville’s population continues to expand, there is a growing need for volunteers at local nonprofits. These twelve organizations offer a chance to serve—and to better get to know your neighbors.

1- Go Shopping

The Catholic Charities of Tennessee offers a refugee resettlement program that provides services to individual refugees and refugee families. Sign up to be a personal shopper for newly arrived refugees. Your goal will be to assist clients in selecting clothing items that are appropriate for Tennessee weather conditions, school, work, and play. cctenn.org

2- Practice your Typing Skills

Nashville's Sexual Assault Center offers counseling for local sexual assault victims and educational programs for children, teens, youth-serving professionals, and parents. Data entry is necessary to maintain the current educational programs. Apply online to assist with the Safe@Last test-data entry. sacenter.org

3- Build a House

Habitat for Humanity, the largest nonprofit builder in the world, uses volunteer labor to construct homes for families in need. Habitat’s Greater Nashville offices have brought Tennesseans together for three decades to build or recycle more than 1,090 homes. Volunteer applications can be found on the Greater Nashville website. habitatnashville.org

4- Clean your Room

Goodwill provides employment to so many in Middle Tennessee, including individuals with intellectual or developmental disabilities. Support Goodwill by donating items to your nearest drop-off location. goodwill.org

5- Make Dinner

With the vision of a slave-free state in mind, End Slavery Tennessee’s mission is to “promote healing of human trafficking survivors and strategically confront slavery in our state.” Volunteer to prepare food for survivors in the organization’s safe houses. You could do this as a one-time commitment or gather a group to cook once a month. endslaverytn.org

6- go on tour

Nashville Rescue Mission provides emergency services and a life-recovery program to those in need. Taking a tour of the main campus in downtown Nashville allows you to meet staff and guests that may entirely change your perspective on homelessness. nashvillerescuemission.org

8- Pick Up the Phone

Hope Clinic for Women offers pregnancy support, counseling, and education on STD prevention. Give support by being a phone counselor, a position that includes answering and transferring client calls, explaining the organization’s services, and contacting clients with appointment reminders and check-ins. hopeclinicforwomen.org

7- Do some Laundry

Project Connect Nashville exists to create loving connections with the homeless and those who live in poverty. The organization creates relationships with at-risk individuals by encouraging them and providing for their needs. Get a few friends together and volunteer for laundry-service day. Your group will be responsible for the women’s transportation and snacks, and will also help them fold their laundry. projectconnectnashville.org

9- Take a Hike

Safe Haven Family Center is the only homeless shelter in Middle Tennessee that provides housing for entire families. The non-profit places a priority on keeping families together in their time of need .The shelter hosts an annual Hike for the Homeless event to raise funds and awareness for homeless families. safehaven.org

10- Stay Up Late

Oasis Center is an organization designed specifically for youth in need. They currently operate Nashville’s only crisis teen shelter and college counseling center for first generation college students. One of many ways to get involved with the Oasis Center is through their winter Street Outreach program that provides a safe, warm place for homeless youth. oasiscenter.org

11- Pack a Lunch

Nashville Cares, the largest HIV/AIDS service organization in Tennessee, offers HIV testing, services to individuals living with HIV/AIDS, prevention education, and counseling. Wellness Wednesday, a program Nashville Cares created, provides nutrition to those living with HIV/AIDS. A Wellness Wednesday volunteer’s duties include setting up produce and helping clients choose a nutritious meal from the menu. nashvillecares.org

12- say your abc's

Legacy Mission Village's mission is to assist refugees as they adapt to a new culture through care, counseling, and educational opportunities. You can participate in the Kindergarten Readiness Program teaching some of the littlest refugees English by practicing numbers, colors and preparing them for the in’s and out’s of an American classroom. legacymissionvillage.org

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