Frequently asked questions about volunteering

What do I need to do to become a volunteer at Children’s Minnesota? How soon can I start?

Please visit this page to view the steps in our onboarding process. The application process typically takes a minimum of at least three weeks from the time you submit an application to the time you come in for your first shift.

I’m interested in holding or rocking babies. Do you offer opportunities to do this?

Children’s Minnesota does not have an exclusive baby rocking role. Our hospital float volunteer role spends time with children of all ages, from birth to young adulthood.

How old do you need to be to volunteer at Children’s Minnesota? Can I bring my kids along to volunteer with me?

All Children’s Minnesota volunteers must be at least 16 years of age, and are expected to work independently. Please note: if you are under 18 years old, we will accept volunteer applications in March for a potential summer position. Positions for those under 18 are available for summer only.

I have a group that would like to volunteer. How can we get involved?

Children’s Minnesota Volunteer Services coordinates individual, ongoing volunteer opportunities. Two options that often work well for groups of volunteers include:

I can’t commit to an ongoing volunteer schedule, but would love to stop in and visit patients for a day or two. Is this possible?

Due to the extensive training required to volunteer at Children’s Minnesota, we ask applicants to commit to a minimum of 40 volunteer hours (approximately one 3-hour shift per week for a minimum of 4 months). You can also find more about one-time opportunities through:

Can I volunteer full days or multiple days per week?

We ask volunteers to start with one 3-hour shift per week. There may be opportunities to pick up additional shifts, up to 10 hours per week.

I have a great animal that I’d love to bring in to visit patients. How can I do this?

We require all volunteer animals (guinea pigs, rabbits, dogs, etc.) to register through Pet Partners. Learn more about Pets Assisting With Healing (PAWH).

If I was a long-term patient at Children’s Minnesota. Can I come back to volunteer?

We are glad to hear you had a positive experience at Children’s Minnesota and want to give back. For the protection of our current patients’ privacy and confidentiality, as well as your own healing journey, we have guidelines for former patients who want to volunteer. Those who have been long-term patients at Children’s Minnesota are advised to discuss the option of volunteering with their former or current care team. If approved by the care team, Volunteer Services encourages the individual to volunteer on the opposite campus of where they were a patient.

Can I volunteer just for the summer?

There are Children’s Minnesota volunteer opportunities year-round, therefore, we do not have a specific summer program. If you are only available to volunteer in the summer, you must be able to commit to at least 10 weeks, once a week for a 3-hour shift. Anyone interested in volunteering must submit an application and the required immunization records. If you are under 18, you are welcome to apply for a position for the summer months.

How do I contact Volunteer Services?

You can contact Volunteer Services by phone or email: