Magdalene and Thistle Farms always welcome volunteers.
From picking thistles, handyman projects, providing lunch for one of the departments at Thistle Farms, teaching classes and assisting in planning and organizing, volunteers have made Thistle Farms and Magdalene what they are today.
You'll find some ongoing opportunities below, but for up-to-date Volunteer activities, please visit our Facebook "Thistle Farms & Magdalene Volunteers" page here.
Ongoing Volunteer Opportunities at Thistle Farms:
WEDNESDAYS: Each Wednesday is open volunteer day at Thistle Farms. Arrive at 8:45 for a quiet, centering reading and to check in at 9:00. After meditation, new visitors get a tour. Our Volunteer Coordinator, Stacye, is available to answer questions and will advise as to what volunteer work is available for the day. Volunteers act as support staff to the Thistle Farms employees, who are skilled artisans. Work usually happens in the paper studio, where we make handmade thistle paper as well as cotton rag paper. The paper is made into cards, journals, and other items. All volunteer work will finish before lunchtime. Volunteer hours are typically 8:45-11:00AM.
Due to the limited space of our facility, we recommend that you RSVP with the Wednesday you want to visit by filling out this form. It is not mandatory, but helps us ensure your experience at Thistle Farms is memorable and rewarding.
- THISTLE FARMING (late Spring/Summer): The picking and drying of thistles can be a beautiful and spiritual volunteering path. The thistles may be past their prime, but we accept them all. Once you have picked your thistles, you may drop them off at Thistle Farms on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays between 9:00AM and 2:00PM.
- COTTON HARVESTING (late summer through winter): Everyone has old sheets, dress shirts and t-shirts. We collect ("harvest") this white, 100% cotton, material to be used in our rag paper recipe. Cotton must be washed three times, without detergent, in order to be used. This is a good opportunity for outside groups to do a cotton drive at their location in the weeks leading up to a visit, then join us on a Wednesday morning to prepare the cotton for the paper-making artisans at Thistle Farms.
- LUNCH: Provide lunch for one of our departments. Approximately 10 people.
Ongoing Volunteer Opportunities at Magdalene
- FALL FUNDRAISER: October, we need approximately 100 volunteers for this event each year. Shifts available for any schedule. Also, about 50-75 volunteers are needed during the days and weeks leading up to this once-a-year event.
- CHRISTMAS STOCKING STUFFER "HARVEST": Help us collect items for the stockings/gift bags that the Magdalene residents get each year.
- HANDYMAN JOBS: Occasional maintenance is necessary for our facilities. Bring a toolkit!
- FOOD: Provide food items or goodies for celebrations or milestone events.
- TUTORS: For GEDs, Drivers’ tests, etc.
- TEACHERS/GROUP LEADERS: Needed for occasional life enrichment classes (tell us your specialty!).
Interested in teaching or tutoring?
Please take a moment to tell us about yourself so we can better understand your experiences, skills and interests. Fill out this form if you are interested in volunteering as a teacher or tutor for any of the topics listed above.
If you want to be involved but can't find the time, below are a few items that are needed and can be dropped off at your convenience:
- Gift Cards to Target or Kroger - $25 or $50
- Welcome baskets (for new residents): shampoo, conditioner, lotion, towel, washcloth, toothbrush, toothpaste, standard size bed pillow, or anything else that might be handy for someone who has no possessions -- magazines, books, healthy snacks, writing paper, stamps -- Containers such as small laundry baskets or under-bed storage boxes are great. Most welcome baskets fall into the $35-$40 range.
- Move-out baskets (for women moving into their own housing): cleaning products, paper products, picture hanging kits, bottled water, and heathly snacks. Containers such as a laundry baskets or under-bed storage boxes are useful in moving out, as well. Most move-out baskets fall into the $35 range.
Magdalene is a 501(c)(3) corporation -Thistle Farms is its DBA. Donations are tax deductible as per federal laws; please refer to your tax advisor for matters related to your specific gift.
For questions about volunteering and in kind donations, please email our Volunteer Coordinator, email@example.com. For questions about an acknowledgement for your in kind donation, contact Marlei.