Every volunteer

makes a difference.

Building homes. Building hope.

Building community.

Building homes is the heart of Topeka Habitat. Our construction volunteers work side-by-side with Topeka Habitat staff, home buyers, and donors  to build homes, and neighborhoods. 

No previous construction or building experience is necessary to volunteer. All construction and repair/rehabilitation sites have an experienced leader who instructs volunteers and provides all necessary tools and safety equipment. Even the most novice volunteer can assist with construction. 

We have opportunities at the home construction site year-round, Tuesdays through Saturdays. Opportunities to help with repair/rehabilitation projects are also available throughout the year.

Volunteers must be at least 16 years of age to volunteer. Check out our construction frequently asked questions below. 

We also welcome volunteer groups! If your organization is interested in volunteering for Topeka Habitat please contact our volunteer coordinator at 785-234-4322 or volunteer@topekahabitat.org.

You don't have to lift a hammer to help. If construction isn't your cup of tea, we also have many volunteer opportunities at our ReStore, administrative offices, and special events.

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Connect with new people and make a difference in our community. Volunteers of all levels are welcome - even if you've never picked up a hammer before!

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We can accommodate groups of up to 10 at our construction sites. Groups of up to 12 can volunteer at the ReStore. Groups are also needed for home repair projects.

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Working on a renovation, repair, or neighborhood clean-up project is a great way to strengthen your  team. Contact us for opportunities.

Construction Volunteer FAQs

How does a construction site volunteer day go?

On your volunteer day, we'll greet you for sign-in several minutes before the scheduled start time. A Topeka Habitat staff member will provide a short overview and safety orientation. Safety is our top priority at construction sites and your attendance at the safety orientation is mandatory.

After orientation, our construction manager or on-site supervisor will teach everyone the tasks for the day. If you're asked to do something you're not 100% comfortable with, the supervisor will be happy to help you get comfortable with the task or will find another task for you. Don't worry, there is always something to do!

Do I need prior experience with construction?

Nope! All of our projects are built primarily with inexperienced volunteers who have a willingness to learn. Our construction supervisors will teach you what you need to know.

Is there an age minimum to volunteer?

Yes. For new construction, home repair and renovation projects, all volunteers must be at least 16 years old. Volunteers who are 16 and 17-years old are not allowed to be on high ladders or use power tools and must have a parental waiver and medical release signed.

Please note: Even if accompanied by a parent, children under 16 are never permitted on our construction sites.

What if I have physical limitations?

We want everyone to have a safe and rewarding experience at our build sites, and there are tasks to suit all levels of experience and physical ability. Please talk with our construction manager or site supervisor about any limitations you have and they can help determine tasks that are most suitable for you. Uneven ground is common at most construction sites and the ground can be wet, muddy, or icy depending on the weather and time of year. Because safety is our top priority we work hard to keep the sites clean and organized, however, because construction sites are active environments, some trip hazards cannot be avoided and there are often steps to navigate to get into our buildings.
Typical work on a construction site can be strenuous, but there are also tasks that are less strenuous--ask a staff member if you need an alternative task. Work shifts are typically three hours before lunch and three hours after lunch. Most of that time you will be on your feet, but you are encouraged to take rest breaks as needed.
Most construction work is done outdoors, or inside the home which is under construction and is not air-conditioned. Please consider your personal tolerance to hot or cold weather when volunteering.
If you are pregnant there are tasks on site that do not involve heavy lifting or exposure to chemical fumes. Please consult your physician before volunteering at a construction site when pregnant. If you have a hearing or vision impairment please let us know in advance if possible. Inviting a friend or family member to volunteeer with you to help navigate the construction site might be a good idea.
If you have any medical conditions that could result in a loss of conciousness, please disclose this to our construction manager or site supervisor to that they can help pick the safest task for you.
If you have an illness or physical limitations but they will not prevent you from safely navigating the site, please join us! And if you think it would be safer to volunteer with a friend, please bring one (make sure they sign up, too). Talk to the Topeka Habitat staff member in charge of the construction site about the tasks you do and do not feel comfortable doing. If you decide that volunteering on a construction site is not for you, consider our other VOLUNTEER options.

What should I wear to volunteer?

Sturdy, closed-toe shoes are required for volunteers. We recommend a solid pair of athletic shoes, hiking shoes or boots, or leather boots. Flip flops, sandals, Crocs, or other unsuitable footware is not allowed and volunteers will not be able to work at the site if they are not wearing appropriate footwear. Wear clothing that can get dirty, ruined and/or paint-covered. During the warmer months you can wear shorts or long pants, whatever you are most comfortable in. During the winter, be sure to wear warm socks, layers, a hat and a warm coat that can get dirty. We will have work gloves available on site, but please bring your own pair if you have them. We provide OSHA-approved hard hats and safety glasses which volunteers are required to wear.

What happens in the case of bad weather?

If the volunteer shift you've signed up for is canceled, you will be contacted by Topeka Habitat for Humanity staff with as much notice as possible. If you have not been contacted, please plan to report to the site. Shifts may be shortened or tasks may change depending on weather. If you have questions or concerns please contact a Topeka Habitat staff member.

What other ways I can help Topeka Habitat?

In addition to volunteering on our construction sites you can also volunteer in our ReStore, volunteer with our Tool Bus, and volunteer for special projects and events. You can also help by making a financial contribution. A large source of our operating income is from local individual donations.