Volunteer Your Time
Volunteers Make Our Programs Possible
You don’t have to be an artist to volunteer with us! We have roles for every skill set and time commitment.
Free Arts relies on the generous help of more than 800 volunteers each year to run our programs and offer support and healing to vulnerable children.
Our volunteers are caring role models who enjoy working with children in a creative setting. The best volunteer mentors have flexibility, patience, commitment, and the desire to work with a vulnerable population of children and teens.
Our office is stocked with project ideas and a vast inventory of art supplies to support volunteers in their efforts. We also work with a variety of art styles, including dance, music, theater, poetry, painting, and sculpture. This means that there are many ways you can work with our children, and plenty of art forms you can learn alongside them!
We also have a need for other types of help, from office support to committee positions.
How to Become a Volunteer
Volunteering for Free Arts begins with a one-hour, no-obligation Volunteer Orientation to learn about the many ways to get involved helping heal homeless and abused children through artistic expression. Orientations are scheduled for the first Monday evening and the first Wednesday morning of each month.
All of our volunteers are required to complete an application for a background screening. Volunteers working with children must obtain a fingerprint clearance through the Arizona Department of Public Safety. We can accept a current valid Arizona Fingerprint Clearance Card if you already have one. If not, our staff can fingerprint and submit your card application through the Free Arts office. We will send these prints for processing and, when approved, the resulting fingerprint clearance card will be mailed to you. Free Arts must receive a copy of your card for your volunteer file. The $65 cost of printing is the responsibility of the volunteer. Scholarships are available if the cost is prohibitive.
Volunteers must be at least 18 years old to work with children. However, children and young adults can help by volunteering in our office, hosting an art supply drive, or running a fundraising campaign.
If you have a question about the Volunteer Orientation, or for more information, contact the Free Arts office at 602-258-8100.
Benefits of Volunteering
In addition to the life changing personal growth and learning that can result from being a volunteer, Free Arts holds periodic social events for volunteers. These events allow you to meet others, share ideas about volunteering and mentoring, and get to know other like-minded people in our community. (Possible link to blog reflection about volunteer connection activities.)
Find the Right Opportunity for You
Weekly Mentor Program
Become a Free Arts weekly mentor and discover the healing power of art in the most rewarding way imaginable – by using it to help others!
You don’t have to be an art expert to volunteer as a weekly mentor. You just have to care about children and want to make a positive difference in their lives using the creative arts. Weekly mentors often work with a partner to share mentoring responsibilities and lower the adult-to-child ratio. You can partner with an existing Free Arts mentor, or you can sign up with a friend and mentor together.
A weekly mentor commits to approximately three volunteer hours per week for 8-16 weeks. You’ll receive extensive training, ongoing support, and a Mentor Manual with instructions for therapeutic art projects. Each week, you’ll submit brief evaluations online and have access to additional training opportunities to become the best mentor you can be.
Professional Artist Series
Volunteers work alongside professional teaching artists in the Professional Artist Series. The artist provides instruction on the artistic skills, and volunteers support the children by encouraging their artistic process. Professional Artist Series volunteers commit to one series at a time which can last 3-10 sessions.
Free Arts Days
During Free Arts Days, volunteers travel to arts experiences at local museums and cultural institutions. Each Free Arts Day is unique. Surrounded by caring volunteers and peers in a community setting, the children experience a sense of connection, value and self-worth.
Every summer, Free Arts offers five weeks of camp sessions. The camps bring together children and teens from social service facilities across Maricopa County. Campers explore many different art mediums, form bonds with others who have similar life experiences, and meet caring adult mentors who guide them through varied opportunities for self expression.
Every camp session culminates in a moving performance for the community.
Camp volunteers must be available for 3-5 weekdays during summer camp sessions.
Our interns expand their knowledge and develop experience by collaborating the Free Arts staff or working within our programs. Through department duties, teamwork, and special projects, interns will have fun and accomplish their learning objectives in a creative and energetic environment.
Internships are unpaid and are available in the following areas: Camp Series, Weekly Mentor Program, General Programs, Volunteer Engagement, Development/Fundraising.
In order to work with Free Arts, interns must be 19 years of age or older. Program interns working with children must submit an application for an Arizona Department of Public Safety Fingerprint Clearance Card and all interns must pass a background check.
Organizational skills, computer proficiency in Microsoft Suite, the ability to perform multiple tasks, and a desire to work with diverse groups of people are necessary. Time commitment is flexible and we will work with your schedule. Typical internships last 14 weeks. Applicants must submit a one-page letter of interest and a current resume to apply.
We’re always in need of individuals who are willing to spend time in our offices helping Free Arts staff. There is no set time commitment – come in for as little as a few hours, or more if your schedule permits.
Committees support Free Arts events and special projects.