You will have a blast sharing a day at the beach with kids with special needs. No experience or special skills required. We have opportunities to make a real difference for every volunteer, and consistently hear from our volunteers that their day was their best day, which is why most of our volunteers join us on a regular basis.
We have fun positions in and out of the water, some require special skills and experience others simply require and open mind and the ability to have fun.
Beach Buddies – Be paired with one of our kids with special needs to be their buddy for the day to help them make the most of their day at the beach. (this is one of the favorite volunteer positions – you won’t believe what an impact this may have on you!)
Water Teams – (Please understand, even if you’re the best, we have a process for new water team volunteers.)
Administration/Event Support – Help with set up, registration, goodie bag preparation, food serving, etc.
Our volunteer base ranges from 12 years old (when accompanied by a parent) to 80+, and come from careers as rocket scientists (seriously) to students, and everything in between.
You will feel welcome from the moment you check in. We will introduce you to those who have been volunteers before to show you the ropes. We have a have a group overview, training, discussion about the day at the beginning of every event.
Our day starts at 8:00AM and runs till about 2:00 including take down and packing up.
What’s in it for you beside a great time and new friends?
To register to volunteer, all you have to do is fill out the Volunteer Waiver and Registration Form for your chapter, which can be found by clicking one of the blue boxes at the bottom of this link: http://www.bestdayfoundation.org/volunteer/. We’ll send you an email with all of the event details a few days before it’s supposed to take place.
Our recommended minimum age to volunteer without parental supervision is sixteen. That said, we also welcome younger children to volunteer alongside their parents, so long as those younger children are mature enough to contribute to the creating an awesome experience for our participants without detracting from their parents’ ability to focus on their own volunteer roles.
At Best Day Foundation, we can always use more help! The special skills we’re searching for vary from time to time, but we always seem to be in need of more tandem surfers, experienced kayakers, photographers, fundraisers, grant writers, webmasters, marketing experts, and communication specialists. If you have any other skills that you think might help Best Day Foundation, please contact email@example.com to let us know!
Of course you can! Although many fellow volunteers will also be working with this population for the first time, you’ll benefit from the support of many experienced volunteers and administrators who will be more than happy to help answer any of your questions.
Absolutely–we have plenty of extra roles we can assign to our volunteers! If you’d rather not be a Beach Buddy, you might end up handling volunteer or participant registration; keeping order at an activity venue; interviewing volunteers, participants, and parents; assembling goodie bags; preparing or serving lunch; or another task that strikes your fancy!
We’re always looking for capable surfers to join our water team! If you feel you have both the skills and fitness level required to not only catch and ride waves, but also help participants pop up and surf while standing on a tandem board, then please contact your Best Day Foundation chapter’s Water Team Leader. He or she will evaluate your readiness and then teach you all about our system to assure you’re always staying safe and having fun.
Believe it or not, escort surfing is probably one of the most challenging roles at our events. Escort surfers need to be prepared to paddle for a few hours straight, catch and knee-ride any wave the tandem surfer chooses, and then be present help if the tandem surfer wipes out, all while riding a ~10-foot rescue board. Although this role is fun, it’s definitely also taxing–but if you’re interested, please contact your Best Day Foundation chapter’s Water Team Leader, who will again evaluate your readiness and then teach you all about our system to assure you’re always staying safe and having fun.
We love having large groups join us–what a great way to enjoy each other’s company while also giving back! It would help for you to inform us in advance if you plan on bringing over fifteen people–and please make sure that each and every volunteer has signed up in advance using our online registration form.
Even if you’re not sure you can come, we’d prefer that you fill out the Volunteer Waiver in advance. When volunteers complete the form on the beach, it slows down our volunteer check-in process. One you have registered, you are welcome to come to any and all events that fit your schedule–and your registration will apply to all of our chapters in your state.
In most cases, we wait until the absolute last minute when deciding whether to cancel an event. Once we determine that we need to cancel, we’ll send an email and write a post on our social media pages to let you know.
Volunteers should stay for the entirety of the event to maximize their ability to contribute to the success of the event.
Check the weather before the event, and wear whatever you think will be most comfortable! Don’t forget that you’ll be given a Best Day Team Surfer t-shirt to change into at check-in. Ideally, we recommend that you wear layers, as the temperature might change from chilly to warm during the morning. On the beach, footwear will range from sneakers to sandals to nothing!
You should bring sunscreen, a towel, and a change of clothes, considering that you might get wet, sweaty, and/or sandy. Coffee, water, snacks, and lunch will be provided for you, but feel free to bring anything else you’d like to drink or eat.
Because we always want to put our participants first, for the most part, you’ll be participating vicariously through your buddy! While he or she kayaks, stand-up paddleboards, or catches waves, it’ll be your job to cheer him or her on from the shoreline. That said, whenever your buddy’s playing on the beach, you’ll be right there playing with him or her.
Unfortunately, because our lunches are often donated, we don’t have the luxury of gearing them to meet various dietary needs. If you have dietary restrictions, please pack yourself a lunch. Typical lunches include pizza, burritos, and hamburgers or hot dogs.
If you want to stay in the loop, please sign up for our email list and follow us on social media using the links at the top right corner of this page!
We would love to have more help behind the scenes! Please let us know how you’d like to get more involved by sending us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org.