Volunteering for Community
Visit our new volunteer interface to see current project opportunities and to sign up to volunteer. Click here!
Volunteers are nothing less than the lifeblood of the Neighborhood Design Center. We were founded by a group of architects and planners who gave their time and talent to help communities advance their grassroots revitalization efforts. This spirit of volunteering still exists today – each year over a hundred volunteer architects, planners, landscape architects, engineers, artists, and other design and planning professionals are actively helping people’s ideas become feasible project plans and ultimately great community places.
The benefits of volunteering are many:
Giving back to communities in need
Professional development through community design projects
Exploring individual potential and gaining experience working with a variety of people
Continuing education through workshops and lectures
Participating in recognition events and social activities
Receiving Intern Development Program (IDP) credits (for architects)
Ways to Volunteer
Project Volunteer: NDC volunteers provide conceptual building and site plans, presentation renderings, preliminary feasibility studies and cost estimates, and community planning and mapping assistance that community groups and non-profits could not otherwise afford.
Special Volunteer Opportunities: Throughout the year our community partners are often in need of volunteers to plant trees, paint murals, and clean up parks. NDC advertises these opportunities on our web site and in our e-newsletters.
… community design work should be transparent and democratic, bearing the fruit of a "roots up" participatory process. Volunteer work with NDC makes that happen and allowed me to broaden my scope on the designer's responsibility to the people. – George Hill, NDC volunteer.
The [volunteer] experience was valuable in terms of its practicality and much more. The design was not only developed by designers, but by collective team effort. Thus, to me, as a designer, I learned that to be socially aware is as important as to be professionally capable. A good piece of work shall be a work of the people and for the people. - Qiaojue Yu, NDC volunteer