Volunteering with one (or more!) of our community service programs is a great way to share your talents, respond to community needs, and learn about yourself, the Walla Walla community, and important social issues. Click on the program titles below to link to each program’s application. Apply Now!
The Adopt-A-Grandparent program is a student-run program that works with the nearby Odd Fellows senior home to pair Whitman students with seniors. Adopt-A-Grandparent volunteers visit with their adopted grandparent once a week for about an hour. Together grandparents and grandkids tell stories, listen to music, read books, go for walks, play games, and do craft projects. Volunteers establish relationships with their adopted grandparents, providing consistent companionship and helping to improve the quality of life for the residents. Several special events also occur each semester, such as musical performances, wheel-chair aerobics, and makeover nights.
The Buddy Program is a student-run program that connects Whitman students with adults in the Walla Walla community with intellectual and developmental disabilities to create friendships that defy the norm. Whitman students meet with their buddies twice a month on Friday afternoons to form one-to-one relationships through events such as dances, movie nights, arts-n-crafts projects, walks in Walla Walla, and much more.
Our mission: To provide high school students in the Walla Walla community with strong Whitman volunteer role models who will help students develop self-confidence in their ability to be successful in higher education through promoting academic commitment, strong study skills, goal setting, and college planning awareness.
The Green Park Bi-Lingual program partners with Green Park Elementary School – a short walk from campus, to provide academic support for students whose first language is Spanish. Volunteers must have a 300 Spanish level proficiency.
Spring Break Service Trips are week-long volunteer trips that allow Whitman students to focus on a particular social issue outside of the Walla Walla community. It is a great way to have a fun and meaningful spring break, living and learning beyond the Whitman bubble. Participants volunteer with a primary social organization throughout the week, in addition to visiting and working with other non-profits to gain an understanding of the issues that affect the broader community. Evening activities include opportunities for fun and reflection. Students also have a chance to explore the city or area they are visiting. The groups are often housed at local churches and cook most meals together.
The Story Time Project believes that reading with the youngest members of our community is fundamental. Reading out loud helps to improve listening, speaking, writing, and reading—all skills needed to succeed in school and beyond. Readers hope to inspire children through weekly reading sessions to have a positive attitude about reading. In addition, the project aims to promote diversity, acceptance, and the celebration of differing cultures through the stories we read. Whitman College volunteers travel to classrooms, daycares, and libraries throughout Walla Walla to read stories to two through seven year olds. Story Time readers work in pairs and read for half an hour each week. There are a number of opportunities for bilingual speakers, especially those fluent in Spanish.
The mentor program pairs Whitman students with approximately 100 local K-5 students at the following elementary schools – Berney, Blue Ridge, Edison, Green Park, Prospect Point and Sharpstein. The Intervention Specialists at each school identify children who would most benefit from this college role model and pair them up for the school year. The mentor walks, bikes or carpools to the school where their mentee attends. They eat lunch together and spend recess playing with one another to build a consistent friendship founded on time and trust. Some mentor/mentee friendships last the entire four years of a Whitman student’s college career. A highlight of the mentor/mentee friendship is the annual Mentee to Campus Day in early spring when the K-5 students visit Whitman for a fun carnival, performances, treats and memories.