Become a Hospital Volunteer
Each year more than 1,000 volunteers help UCSF Benioff Children's Hospital Oakland fulfill its unique mission—to care for children regardless of their family's ability to pay. Volunteers have been the backbone of Children's since the day we opened our doors over 90 years ago.
Volunteers do many things, from working in the Gift Shop, to the Emergency Room, to helping out in a Children's research institute laboratory. Our service-based program helps meet the needs of patients, families and staff. It's not a job-training program or an internship, nor does it provide medical shadowing. We do not accept court-ordered placements. Volunteers must be 16 or older, in good general and mental health, have no criminal record, and be able to make a long-term commitment, including a weekly, scheduled shift. A minimum of one shift per week for at least six months of continuous service and a total minimum commitment of 100 hours is expected.
Prospective volunteers complete an application form and health clearance, pass a background check, and attend a new volunteer orientation. Volunteers also interview individually to determine a service schedule, and in many cases attend additional training classes.
Please review the program information, including Volunteer FAQs, Hospital Volunteer Program First Steps, and Volunteer Opportunities.
Volunteering at Children's is fun, it's rewarding, and it's a way to make a difference in someone's life every single day. Children's Hospital Oakland relies on a network of trained and enthusiastic volunteers dedicated to furthering our mission. Every year, more than 1,000 area volunteers work within the hospital itself, with countless others supporting us in the community through fundraising and outreach methods.
Depending on interests and background, volunteers may find themselves working the counter at the gift shop, tutoring in the hospital classrooms, or even working alongside a researcher in our CHORI department. Your commitment to the job is part of what makes Volunteer Services at Children's Hospital Oakland so successful, and we ask that you contribute a minimum 100 hours of service after your initial training period. The Volunteer Services department is designed to help patients and their families, which is why we have a fairly lengthy application and intake process. If you are over the age of 16, in good health, and have no criminal record, you may apply in person or download our application package.
More: Volunteering at Children's Hospital Oakland
We know how lucky we are to be part of such a strong network of individuals dedicated to providing high-quality pediatric care, and we invite you to become a part of it with us. From long-term and department-specific opportunities to special projects, the Volunteer Services at Children's Hospital Oakland has a range of options for those who wish to apply.
Volunteer with our Foundation
Children's Hospital & Research Center Foundation is a not-for-profit organization dedicated to supporting all the work we do at Children's Hospital Oakland. Raising millions of dollars every year, the Foundation is a large part of our success as a hospital and pediatric research center. Several volunteer opportunities exist through the Foundation, ranging from planning our annual events and fundraisers to helping run the office itself. The focus here is less on patient care and more on finding ways to create a sustainable and lasting gift for the future—and that requires your help.
If you'd like to become part of this incredible movement, visit the Children’s Hospital Foundation Website for more information.
At Children's Hospital Oakland, we really are strengthened by the people who support every facet of what we do. You are our success and our future, and we thank you.
Children's Hospital Auxiliary: The Branches
Children's Hospital Branches has been in operation since 1914, and stands as the oldest supporter of medical services and pediatric research in the Oakland community. Branches is actually a network of dozens of separate volunteer groups, all of which work together to advance the goals of the hospital. This is done through community outreach, child advocacy, and fundraising efforts that amount to over $1 million every year. What is unique about Branches is that it is a primarily female-based organization, and has been since its start. More than 450 members currently participate, and their work has brought life to many of our direct care and research programs.
More: Children's Hospital Oakland Branches