The Wilmington area is chock full of community groups, attractions and events. Here are a few that might interest you.
the ability garden
The beautiful grounds of the NHC Arboretum provide the perfect setting to engage people of all ages and a wide variety of challenges in professionally directed, nature-based activities. Participants at The Ability Garden experience increased self-confidence and self-esteem, develop a greater awareness of the environment, learn horticultural skills and take pride in volunteering in a community garden.
Adopt-an-ANGEL partners with area shelters to concentrate on the cats and dogs that have run out of time or have special needs. We move them to a safe haven with private citizens, strive to provide them with any veterinary care they need and then we find them loving homes. Since 2004, over 11,000 of these previously unwanted animals found their forever homes through our safety net. When one of ours gets adopted, we go and get another. It's as simple as that! You can help a homeless cat or dog by volunteering to foster, working a pet fair and more.
AGING IN PLACE DOWNTOWN
Comprehensive Care of Wilmington helps seniors living in downtown Wilmington to continue to live independently and stay in their homes regardless of health, wealth or age. All of our services are free. Aging in Place depends upon volunteers to carry out all of our programs. We have a role for anyone interested in helping.
Established in 1901, Airlie Gardens is a valuable cultural and ecological component of New Hanover County and North Carolina history. Airlie is a breathtaking combination of formal gardens, wildlife, historic structures, walking trails, sculptures, views of Bradley Creek, 10-acres of freshwater lakes, more than 100,000 azaleas and the grandeur of the 467-year-old Airlie Oak.
American Sewing Guild
Our amazing members are committed to helping others enjoy the creativity provided through sewing while giving back to our community through various projects. At American Sewing Guild, we take our sewing skills and turn them into action.
American Red Cross
The American Red Cross shelters, feeds and provides emotional support to victims of disasters; supplies about 40 percent of the nation's blood; teaches skills that save lives; provides international humanitarian aid; and supports military members and their families. The Red Cross is a not-for-profit organization that depends on volunteers and the generosity of the American public to perform its mission. To join us, visit the website today to learn more about volunteer opportunities and how to submit a volunteer application.
The Arboretum is a special 7 acres in the heart of New Hanover County where you can see the variety of plants that grow in our coastal area. Arboretum highlights include a resource center for horticultural research, education, leadership development, and environmental and aesthetic appreciation. The Arboretum supports tours, classes, water garden tours, art in the Arboretum, master gardeners, plant sales and more. Admission is free.
The Azalea Festival is an annual, community rich event that includes something for everyone. It is an array of artwork, gardens, and history that contributes to the region’s economy and promotes the unique qualities of Wilmington’s river-to-the-sea community culture through recreational, educational and family-oriented events. The Festival encourages volunteerism and civic participation.
Bellamy Mansion Museum
The Bellamy Mansion Museum is one of North Carolina's most spectacular examples of antebellum architecture. The mansion now serves as a museum of history and the design arts, offering daily tours and many dynamic educational and cultural programs throughout the year.
Cameron Art Museum
The Cameron Art Museum (the CAM) provides a cultural gathering place that enriches the lives of museum visitors and the community through high quality exhibitions, lifelong learning in the arts, dynamic public programs, and stewardship and interpretation of the collection.
canines for Service
Canines for Service, Inc. provides Veterans from all conflicts with service-connected mobility challenges, Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder, Traumatic Brain Injury, and Military Sexual Trauma with highly trained service dogs at no cost or promotional consideration. CFS fulfills this mission by acquiring approximately 85% of its dogs from rescue and shelter organizations. Using this approach, CFS opens space for another animal in need, saves the life of a dog who may be euthanized, and provides a renewed purpose for the dog.
Cape Fear Chorale
The mission of the Cape Fear Chorale is to present, at no charge, professional quality choral music that provides artistic and educational experiences for its performers and an ever-broadening audience.
Cape Fear Literacy Council
The Cape Fear Literacy Council is an independent, non-profit organization whose mission is to provide individualized literacy services for adults in the Cape Fear area so they are able to meet their goals and develop their potential. Volunteers are welcomed as tutors and to assist with awareness-raising and fundraising.
Cape Fear Museum
Explore the rich history, science and cultures of the Lower Cape Fear region at the state's oldest history museum. Discover the past in Cape Fear Stories, where you can see a scale model of 1863 Wilmington waterfront and watch the Civil War Battle of Fort Fisher unfold before your eyes. The Cape Fear Museum has educational programs for children and families.
Cape Fear Orchid Society
Whether you just bought your first orchid and have no idea how to care for it or you are a seasoned grower and enjoy showing orchids, the Cape Fear Orchid Society offers something for everybody! Our varied meeting speakers and our members allow for a learning experience in a friendly and social atmosphere.
Cape Fear River Watch
Our mission is to protect and improve the water quality of the Cape Fear River Basin for all people through education, advocacy and action. We are the region’s go-to source for information, advocacy and legal action related to GenX and other per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) discharged into the environment from a DuPont/Chemours facility located in Fayetteville, NC. Additionally, Cape Fear River Watch plays a key coordination role in the Cape Fear River Partnership which is focused on fisheries restoration in the Cape Fear River. We offer multiple opportunities for citizen engagement through our citizen science Creekwatchers program, monthly seminars, paddles and clean-ups. We provide education to both children and adults through eco-tours and summer camps.
Cape Fear Sail and Power Squadron
The Cape Fear Sail and Power Squadron offers a myriad of courses to enhance your boating skills, as well as regular opportunities to get together socially both on the water and land to enjoy each other's company and share experiences. In addition, any non-member can request a free Vessel Safety Examination for their boat to ensure compliance with Coast Guard regulations. Come for the boating education. Stay for the friends!
Domestic Violence Shelter and Services
For over 35-years, Domestic Violence Shelter and Services, Inc. has empowered victims and their families to break the cycle of domestic violence by providing shelter and on-going support services, as well as public awareness and prevention programs. We have three resale shops located throughout Wilmington where you can shop for household items, clothing, furniture, and other treasures while supporting the agency’s programs and services. Vintage Values
DREAMS is a youth development organization that uses the performing, visual and literary arts to reach young people ages 8-18 who are living in poverty and at risk for involvement in the Juvenile Justice system, as well as for academic failure.
family promise of lower cape fear
Our mission is to provide case management and transitional housing for victims of domestic violence and emergency shelter to families experiencing homelessness while supplying them with the resources and skills vital to regain and maintain financial independence. Discover the wide range of volunteer opportunities at Family Promise – from serving meals, to providing financial literacy training, to assisting with fundraising events. There is something for everyone!
Good Shepherd Center
Established in 1983 as a modest Soup Kitchen, Good Shepherd has grown to become the largest provider of homeless services in the region. Current programs include the Soup Kitchen which serves over 89,000 meals a year; Second Helpings food salvage and distribution program; Sgt. Eugene Ashley Center providing transitional and permanent supportive housing for Veterans and men with disabilities; a Day Shelter providing the homeless with access to showers, clothing, transportation, and on-site mental health and health services; and a Night Shelter with 118 beds for homeless men, women, and families with children. Good Shepherd recently opened SECU Lakeside Reserve, an affordable housing unit with 40 apartments for chronically homeless adults with disabilities, including seniors and Veterans. Opportunities are available for volunteers of every age, interest, and schedule.
Kids Making It!
Do you love woodworking or are you an artist? Want to make a positive impact in a young person’s life? If you answered yes to both of these questions, please consider volunteering at Kids Making It! Kids Making It teaches valuable vocational, entrepreneurial and life skills to at-risk, low income and disadvantaged youth. Our goal for every student we serve is for them to stay in school, stay out of trouble, and transition successfully into either the workplace or college.
Lower Cape Fear lifecare
Volunteers provide respite for caregivers and much-needed emotional support for patients and their families. They also assist hospice families with errands as needed. Volunteers act as objective, caring friends to people in need. They also provide administrative support, help with special events, and give assistance with community outreach. Lower Cape Fear Lifecare
Lump to Laughter
Provides spiritual and emotional support as well as financial assistance to those diagnosed with breast cancer. Support meetings and gatherings, Hope Packages, spa days, virtual shared stories, online private forums with local survivors, and an Angel Fund to assist with household bills while in treatment for breast cancer. Volunteers are always needed to assist with supporting local survivors and those in treatment as well as help with special events, fundraising and community outreach. Lump to Laughter
Meals on Wheels
Home Delivered Meals, our local Meals on Wheels provider, is looking for help from people who desire to give back to their community. Volunteers are needed to help prepare and package dinners to be delivered, organize schedules, make phone calls, load delivery vehicles, and deliver meals. Whether you have only a few hours one day per week, can volunteer every day, or can only work a few hours on a weekend, your assistance is needed.
NC Aquarium at Fort Fisher
Volunteers assist in the areas of education, aquariology and horticulture and also as certified divers. Volunteers enable visitors to discover, enjoy and learn about exhibits and collections at the Aquarium. NC Aquarium at Fort Fisher
1 in 5 children struggle with hunger in New Hanover County. Hunger and inadequate nutrition wreak havoc on children’s emotional, physical, and mental well-being. NourishNC believes “it is easier to build strong children than to repair broken adults.” It takes nearly 5,000 volunteer hours a year to nourish our community’s children. Sign up to sort food or to pack food bags and boxes.
The Osher Lifelong Learning Institute (OLLI) at UNCW is a university-led and member-supported organization that provides lifelong learning opportunities. OLLI at UNCW focuses on adults aged 50 and older in the southeastern North Carolina region, through educational and experiential programming, connecting the adult and university communities.
paws4people specializes in training customized Assistance Dogs for two general groups: children and adolescents with physical, neurological, psychiatric, and/or emotional disabilities; and Veterans and Service Members with Chronic/Complex Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (C-PTSD), Traumatic Brain Injuries (TBI), and Military Sexual Trauma. They have placed over 700 dogs. p4p always has a need for volunteers to help at the Puppy Development Center, participating as a foster family, leading tours in their new Castle Hayne training facility, graphic designers, copy writers, editors, videographers, resource development professionals and internet professionals of all types.
pender adult services, inc.
Pender Adult Services offers a broad range of group and individual activities and services that respond to the needs and interests of older adults, families and caregivers in our communities. Programming includes activities, classes, services and information assistance to promote healthy and fulfilling lives. We offer two convenient locations: Heritage Place in Burgaw, NC, and Topsail Senior Center in Hampstead, NC. Volunteer opportunities are varied and many with our agency; delivering meals on wheels, working at the reception desk, assisting in the dining room before and during lunch, updating the scrapbook, helping with the newsletter, maintaining the wellness room, and planning and setting up for special events and seminars.
Since 2006, individual donors, foundations, community partners and volunteers have helped us to distribute more than 77,000 books to 35,000 children in need. For many children, this is the first book they have ever received. At least 40% of the children in our schools live in economically disadvantaged households and many do not have books in the home. Team First Book
The mission of the Thalian Hall Center for the Performing Arts, Inc. is to present a broad range of educational, entertainment, and cultural programs; to be a major regional resource for quality spaces, equipment and services; and to preserve the symbol of Wilmington's cultural heritage for future generations.
UNCW's Office of the Arts
UNCW’s Office of the Arts provides inspirational cultural programming for the campus community and the larger region. The Office of the Arts curates the UNCW Presents Series, manages Kenan Auditorium, and advocates for the arts on UNCW's campus and in the Wilmington community, in collaboration with the five academic arts departments and community partners.
WilmingtonBiz.com is the Wilmington, NC region's home page for business.WilmingtonBiz.com covers a range of industries, including commercial and residential real estate, health care, technology, banking, film, hospitality, retail, restaurants and more. Our site features daily happenings from New Hanover, Brunswick and Pender counties as well as stories from our bi-weekly print publication, Greater Wilmington Business Journal.
Wilmington Symphony Orchestra
The Wilmington Symphony Orchestra provides symphonic music at the highest degree of excellence through performance opportunities for regional musicians and educational programs for our community’s youth.
The Wilson Center
The Wilson Center is Cape Fear Community College’s arts hub and eastern North Carolina’s most technologically advanced performing arts center. The building boasts a grand performance hall designed with three floors that wrap the stage, creating excellent views for our guests. Volunteering can be your backstage pass to Broadway shows, concerts of all kinds, comedy, and more. See the shows you want and save on tickets by helping us provide excellent guest service. Usher, ticket scanner, hospitality host; there are many roles to play.