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Looking for a fun way to give back and make a difference? Join Ijams' team of dedicated volunteers! From removing invasive species and restoring native East Tennessee landscapes to helping with special events or providing assistance at the Volunteer Information Desk, there are so many ways to get involved at Ijams!

Volunteer Opportunities

Ijams simply would not be Ijams without the hundreds of volunteers who contribute their time and talents to this nonprofit nature center. If you're looking to be a habitual volunteer at Ijams, volunteer opportunities are broken into four main areas:


Teach others about nature! Volunteers lead school group hikes, assist public programs, set up touch tables and information booths, and more. You don’t have to know every rock, tree, and bird. You just need to be enthusiastic and want to share your love of the outdoors with others.


Wrangle some weeds! With more than 318 acres to care for, Ijams needs folks who are ready to roll up their sleeves and get dirty! Trail volunteers maintain more than 12 miles of trails throughout the grounds by mulching, weeding, and removing invasive species.


Host a great party! Volunteers are essential in helping Ijams with some of the biggest and best events in East Tennessee. From the Wonder of Hummingbirds Festival and Ijams River Rescue to the nature center's largest fundraiser, Ijams' Twilight at Ijams, volunteers assist in every aspect of Ijams events. Every month has opportunities to help with events, big and small.

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Get in on the action! In every nonprofit organization, “behind the scenes” volunteers are the unsung heroes. They answer phones, help visitors navigate the trails, assist with office work, take care of the bird feeders, and generally keep the place running smoothly.


Natural Resource Management

Solo Pickers*

  • Volunteers comb the grounds and pick up litter with gear provided from the Visitor Center.

Lead Pickers*

  • Volunteers take charge and help scout, lead, and plan public cleanups.

Trail Maintenance Volunteer*

  • Volunteers help maintain Ijams Nature Center trails.

Trail Scout Volunteer*

  • Volunteers monitor the condition of trails and other spaces at the nature center.

* Volunteers are expected to commit per season (e.g., Winter, Spring, Fall,  Summer).


Guest Services Volunteer**

  • Volunteers are stationed at Ijams' outdoor pop-up booths to help visitors navigate the trails


** Volunteers are expected to commit per season (e.g., Spring, Fall, or Summer)

Upcoming Public Volunteer Events

Special Events at Ijams in August


SO MANY EVENTS! Join the fun and volunteer for one (or many!), from the Ijams Hummingbird Festival: A Celebration of Wings, music nights with Mic Harrison and Peter Karp, movies, and more ! Want to help? View Opportunities and Sign Up

Mead's Quarry Cleanup | Aug. 14 | 9-11 am

Mead's Quarry is a beautiful place for everyone to enjoy, but trash isn't pretty, and it can harm wildlife and visitors! Join Ijams at a Mead's Quarry Cleanup to help keep this special area clean AND safe! Three teams of 10 will clean up around and ON the lake as well as Toll Creek! Learn More and Register


Spring/Summer | Ijams Information Pop-Up on the Plaza | Monday-Sunday (Commit to Once/Week) | 10 am-3 pm

Love Ijams AND people? Welcome visitors, help them navigate the trails, answer questions, and handle basic sales for trail maps and refreshments. This pop-up was previously in the entry of the Visitor Center. Email Sarah Brobst to Volunteer

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Ijams' Volunteer Mailing List

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Can you think of other creative uses for your talents? Let Ijams put your skills to work to make the world a better place!

To learn more about volunteering at Ijams, please contact Cindy Hassil at chassil@ijams.org.

Want to schedule a workday for your club or group?

Submit Request for Group Workday


Please email Development Director Cindy Hassil for more information at chassil@ijams.org

Looking for Online Volunteer Orientation? (Please do not take the orientation quiz unless you've been in contact with Cindy, but feel free to read.)  Download Slides


Updated Volunteer Manual 

Invasive Species Guide

Trail Volunteering Manual