Festive Season Volunteering

For many community groups and organisations, the festive season is the busiest time of the year. It is a fantastic opportunity to give back to those less fortunate and help spread holiday cheer. Volunteering roles are in high demand at this time and these positions often fill quickly.

Looking to volunteer?

One of the best ways to find volunteering opportunities is via online recruitment platforms, such as GoVolunteer. You can specify the distance you’re willing to travel, your preferred duration, areas of interest, and your availability. You can also filter your search using keywords for a particular area or activity type, such as Christmas’ or ‘Festive’.

Alternatively, many community organisations advertise volunteer opportunities on their websites – so if there is an organisation you’d like to volunteer with, check out their website or approach them directly to see if they offer Christmas volunteering.

Need more help? Try browsing the recommendations on our Search for volunteer roles page.

Organisations to consider

Salvation Army logo

The Salvation Army
Providing hope, opportunity and freedom to all Australians, including meals and food hampers to families in need.

The Smith Family logo

The Smith Family
A national children’s charity helping disadvantaged Australian children get the most out of their education.

Meals on Wheels Victoria logo

Meals on Wheels
A national service supporting the health and wellbeing of older Australians, through meal delivery and social connection.

Melbourne City Mission logo

Melbourne City Mission
A leading community support organisation for children, young people and adults experiencing disadvantage.

St Vincent de Paul Society logo

St Vincent de Paul Society
Assisting people experiencing poverty and inequality, working to shape a more just and compassionate society.

Starlight Children's Foundation logo

Starlight Children’s Foundation
Helping deliver happiness to seriously ill children and their families.

Ronald McDonald House Charities logo

Ronald McDonald House
A home-away-from-home for seriously ill children and their families.

SecondBite logo

A national food rescue organisation working to minimise waste and deliver food to people in need.

Important considerations

Ensure adequate support

  • In line with the National Standards for Volunteer Involvement, Volunteering Victoria supports best practice management for all volunteers. This includes the process of adequate support and training for volunteers and appropriate inductions. The number of volunteers in which organisations can safely engage at any one time can restrict the number of opportunities available.
  • Lack of resources or limited budgets may prevent organisations expanding programs over the festive season.
  • Volunteering is not free. There is a strong focus of ‘time willing given without financial gain’, within the definition of volunteering, however the support required to set up an activity – including personal protective equipment, police checks, insurances and staff to supervise activities – is a real cost for any organisation.
  • Paid staff may have annual leave over the festive season. Therefore, the organisation may be unable to provide appropriate levels of support to volunteers, who often have little training due to the limited duration of the activity.
Other ways to help

  • When considering where you would like to volunteer, think about the skills that you have to offer. This reduces the amount of support that you may require and may make you an attractive candidate for a volunteer role.
  • If there are no volunteer roles available, consider providing a monetary donation. This can be a practical and effective way to still support a cause or program.


There are many benefits to volunteering during the festive season:

  • People often have greater availability to volunteer, discover community groups and organisations.
  • Volunteers can provide new ideas and support new ways of working.
  • Volunteers understand and learn about the organisations mission and goals, becoming walking advocates for programs.
  • Volunteering over the festive season has the potential to encourage longer-term volunteering.
  • Skilled volunteers can make a contribution whilst juggling other commitments.
  • Volunteers can support community groups and organisation during peak times.
  • Volunteering is a proven pathway to skills enhancement and can have a profound impact upon an individual’s wellbeing.
  • There is a growing demand for volunteering roles, which helps to fulfil the demand over peak periods.

Volunteering, no matter what the duration, connects people to community and supports the Australian way of life. Once you have volunteered, you are likely to return for a fix of that fabulous feel-good feeling!

While most organisations are delighted to have additional assistance over the festive season, they also welcome volunteers 365 days of the year. Consider other periods during which you could volunteer.