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Summer of Service Institute

This free, 6-week program helps youth recognize their passion, share their talent and realize their power to transform our community through service. Each year up to 20 Summer Service volunteers are hosted at local non-profits for dedicated youth in grades 7-11. Our volunteers get experience in computer science, agriculture, teaching and more. The program runs from June 6 to July 20, 2019.

HOW TO APPLY:  You can either complete the application form online or download the application and email it or drop it off at our office. THE APPLICATION CYCLE IS CLOSED FOR SUMMER 2019.

Questions about the Program:  Email us or call Elana at 831-427-5070 x119

Paloma PVLF2

How the Program Works

Participants are matched with a nonprofit based on their skills and interest. During the 6-week program, volunteers contribute valuable work in support of diverse causes including food distribution, child development, animal care, arts and creative empowerment, health, technology and environmentalism.

Non-profits provide rewarding placements and training for youth, so they can develop their skills in a safe, enriching environment. See below for this year's partner sites. The Volunteer Center of Santa Cruz County provides training to prepare for your placement and field trips and group projects on Fridays.


Program Activities

During the six week program volunteers:

  • Volunteer at a non-profit for a maximum of 4 hours per day for up to 4 days per week
  • Volunteer with one non-profit for 6-weeks
  • Attend job readiness and team-building workshops
  • Participate in service projects
  • Attend fun field trips (SF Giants Game and more!)
  • Earn community service hours
YS Jade at JH

Apply for the Program

Participants commit to volunteering at least one day a week for six weeks and attend field trips and trainings. Join the fun next summer to amplify your voice and make a rewarding impact in Watsonville and beyond.

Applications for Summer 2019 are due May 15th.

Partner Sites 2019

Digital Nest - Watsonville, 14+, contribute to the inner workings of our organization as a tech squad member, resource provider, tour and orientation facilitator, and/or graphic designer.

Elderday - Santa Cruz, 15+, engage seniors in activities including reading, playing board games, painting, craft making, and assisting staff with walking.

Environmental Science Workshop - Watsonville, 13+, teach kids of all ages hands-on-science and how to use tools.

Homeless Garden Project - Santa Cruz, 16+, maintain crops, support kitchen, cultivate and prune.

Jacob's Heart - Watsonville, 12+, volunteer as a card designer for children with cancer or as a food pantry helper.

Mariposa Art - Watsonville, 15+, assist kids with art, drum, dance and theater classes.

Pajaro Valley Loaves and Fishes - Watsonville, 16+, stock the pantry, help prepare lunch, wash dishes and clean dining area.

Survivor's Healing Center -  Santa Cruz, 15+, community outreach, administration, event planning, and arts & creativity.

Youth N.O.W. - Watsonville, 16+, volunteer as a youth leader or enrichment teacher with middle school youth.

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