Certifying organization for the President's Volunteer Service Award.
One-day Event Opportunities
Looking for a volunteer opportunity that you can do quickly? These upcoming events are just a few hours long, and provide great experience.
Community & Cultural Events (Ages 14+) include seasonal celebrations, concerts in the park and events at any district facility. Volunteers typically work 2 – 6 hour shifts to provide event support and assist with activities to provide a fun and safe experience for the public.
Habitat Restoration, Trails Improvement & Gardening Events (All ages; youth 13 & under must be with an adult) cover a gamut of outdoor projects that focus on making physical improvements to a site. Volunteers typically work 2 - 3 hour shifts focused on invasive plant removal, planting, weeding, mulching, pruning and other potentially labor-intensive activities.
Check out and sign up for any of our upcoming events here (in English & Spanish).
NOTE: Volunteers do not need to submit vaccination information for these volunteer positions.
Junior Lifeguard Program (Ages 12+)
NEW - Learn how to swim while training to become a Junior Lifeguard!
As a Junior Lifeguard, you have the opportunity to obtain the basic skills and experience necessary to qualify for a staff Lifeguard position when you turn 16. Many of our Junior Lifeguards already know how to swim at a Level 3+, but we have recently expanded the program to provide an alternate training track for youth who may have little to no swimming experience too!
All Junior Lifeguards must complete a Junior Lifeguard course with THPRD or the Red Cross. If you are interested in earning this course for free, you can volunteer to earn the class* or financial aid may be available. Trainings are offered year-round. Please see the Activities Guide for upcoming class times.
If you have little or no experience swimming, join our NEW alternate training course where you can learn how to swim while training to become a Junior Lifeguard. This summer course is at Conestoga Recreation & Aquatic Center on Fridays, from 10 a.m. - 12 p.m. through September 2, 2022. Late additions to the class are welcome! Financial aid is available. Contact Conestoga Recreation & Aquatic Center at 503-629-6313 to sign up today!
Already completed the Junior Lifeguard course? You will be able to start volunteering, once your volunteer application is processed.
If you have NOT taken the Junior Lifeguard course, you can begin volunteering as an Interim Aquatic Assistant, once your volunteer application is processed. As an Aquatic Assistant, you can help check in program participants, clean the pool deck and provide office support, but you will not be allowed to volunteer in the pool until your training is complete. To register for the course, contact any THPRD center or register online.
If would like to become a Junior Lifeguard, apply here (in English & Spanish)!
RISE (Realizing Interests through Service Experience) is a leadership program where youth can develop the necessary leadership and communication skills to join the workforce. Teens are provided an introduction to volunteering with the park district and coached in safety, volunteer expectations, group dynamics, age appropriate learning, and more. They gain valuable work experience, earn school community service requirements and have lots of fun!
Applicants must commit to a minimum of 80 hours of service (RISE volunteers trained prior to 2022 must commit to a minimum of 50 hours of service) within a year of their start date. All RISE volunteers are required to attend an initial training that is held virtually. Trainings are scheduled monthly, with more frequent trainings leading into summer.
Apply (in English & Spanish) to become a RISE Youth Leader today!
RISE Youth Leaders provide support for a variety of THPRD events and programs, including:
District Events provide youth leaders an opportunity to assist with event leadership at community and cultural events, as well as volunteer projects focused on habitat restoration, gardening and general site maintenance. RISE leaders will learn to lead a variety of station activities that are commonly provided to the public at community and cultural events, in addition to helping setup up for and clean up after these events.
Summer Camps provide opportunities for teens interested in working with youth at one of the districts's specialty summer camps. Volunteers assist with the leadership, setup and cleanup of camp activities. Activities could include crafts, dance, hiking, singing, swimming, drama, sports, games and field trips. Volunteers must commit to serving at least two full weeks of camp and will help out with the following specialty camps at a number of locations, including Camp Rivendale, Cedar Hills Rec Center, Conestoga Rec & Aquatic Center, Cooper Mountain Nature Park, Jenkins Estate and Tualatin Hills Nature Park.
Afterschool Programs provide youth leaders an opportunity to help staff with the oversight, setup and cleanup of afterschool programs. Activities could include crafts, dance, hiking, singing, sports and games. Each location may provide a different experience and/or serve a different portion of the community. These opportunities are available from 3 - 6 p.m., on weekdays throughout the school year at Cedar Hills Recreation Center, Conestoga Recreation & Aquatic Center and Garden Home Recreation Center.
Drop-in Childcare Programs provide youth leaders an opportunity to help staff with the oversight, setup and cleanup of drop-in childcare programs. Activities could include crafts, dance, hiking, singing, sports and games. These opportunities are available year-round, during normal business hours at Cedar Hills Recreation Center and Conestoga Recreation & Aquatic Center.
Preschool Programs provide youth leaders an opportunity to help staff with the oversight, setup and cleanup of preschool programs. Activities could include crafts, dance, hiking, singing, sports and games. Each location may provide a different experience and/or serve a different portion of the community. These opportunities are available from 8:30 a.m. - 12:30 p.m., on weekdays throughout the school year at Cedar Hills Recreation Center, Conestoga Recreation & Aquatic Center and Tualatin Hills Nature Center.
Therapeutic Recreation Programs provide youth leaders an opportunity to work with teens and adults experiencing disabilities. These programs are year-round opportunities for compassionate volunteers who can engage program participants in games, crafts, dance, swimming and other activities that enhance participant socialization and personal well-being. Activities are scheduled on Monday evenings at the Elsie Stuhr Center, Thursday evenings at Tualatin Hills Athletic Center and swimming activities are scheduled on an ongoing basis at Harman Swim Center.
Apply (in English & Spanish) to become a RISE Youth Leader today!
The park district has a number of opportunities for students pursuing a more in depth volunteer experience to meet the requirements of an International Baccalaureate (IB) or Rachel Carson's 8th grade project. Here's a list of the opportunities available:
Environmental Advocacy & Organizing with a Friends Group - Learn from a group of citizens who have made a difference in their community through active participation in a Friends Group. The Friends of the Tualatin Hills Nature Park work with staff to inspire a love of the Tualatin Hills Nature Park, as well as participation in its care and protection. The Friends engage the local community in support of park activities, with a focus on increasing awareness of the local ecosystem, organizing fundraising opportunities and promoting volunteerism. Students are welcome to join the monthly Steering Committee meetings, as well as annual fundraising events that are typically scheduled in April and October. To get started, interested students should contact the Friends of Tualatin Hills Nature Park at email@example.com.
Impacts of Habitat Restoration on Urban Wildlife - Natural areas throughout the district provide shelter and food for a variety of urban wildlife. Efforts to improve these natural areas, with the help of the local community, are ongoing. Activities generally focus on removing invasive plant species and replanting these areas with plants that are native to the Tualatin River Valley. Volunteer service projects are scheduled to support these efforts on a regular basis. If you are interested in signing up to volunteer at upcoming habitat restoration projects, check out available projects and sign up here. Students under the age of 14 must also be accompanied by a parent or supervising adult during project.
Monitor Local Amphibian Populations - Native amphibians are sensitive to environmental changes and can be used as indicators of habitat quality. Northern red-legged frogs are listed as a “Sensitive – Vulnerable” species by the Oregon Department of Fish & Wildlife. Volunteers within this program survey ponds throughout the district to count egg masses of this and other amphibian species. The primary goal of the project is to monitor these populations of native amphibian species as indicators of wetland health, so staff can adjust management practices to promote these species.
Students interested in this activity must be able to attend the district's annual amphibian survey volunteer training (in late-January) and perform a minimum of 3 surveys at an assigned site, on a biweekly basis. Surveys typically run annually from February 1 - March 30. Students under the age of 14 must also be accompanied by a parent or supervising adult during the training and survey sessions. Students (and parents, if student is under 14 years old) interested in this activity should complete a volunteer application here (in English & Spanish).
Naturescaping: Make Every Yard a Natural Area - Much of the land throughout this area is privately owned, so educating the public on the benefits of naturescaping is necessary to have a large-scale impact on our watershed. Work with the Friends of Tualatin Hills Nature Park to learn about gardening with native plants, otherwise known as naturescaping and spread the word to your neighbors. The Friends lead regular garden work parties to maintain the demonstration gardens that surround the Tualatin Hills Nature Center that are used to educate and promote naturescaping throughout the region. Students interested in this opportunity can check out and sign up for upcoming garden work parties at the Tualatin Hills Nature Center here. Students under the age of 14 must also be accompanied by a parent or supervising adult during these work parties.
Youth Leadership through Service - Students who are interested in adopting a natural area or garden, can also organize and lead volunteer projects with fellow students, at their adoption site. Students interested in this option must get additional training, shadow park district staff on project leadership and lead at least two volunteer projects on their own. All students interested in this option must have a parent participate in the training process, as well as their scheduled projects. The district has a limited number of these opportunities available to students annually. Interested students and parents should submit a volunteer application here (in English & Spanish).