The Field Guide to Community Service


“Education is the passport to the future, for tomorrow belongs to those who prepare for it today.”
— Malcolm X

If education is important to you, then look no further. Whether you want to tutor a child, support a teacher or become a mentor, there are opportunities to get involved at every level. Education is at the core of a thriving community and you can help make a difference through volunteering with one of these nonprofits.


  • Give your extra office supplies, corporate swag or surplus materials to Resource Area For Teaching (RAFT) and it will be used to create educational activity kits for students.

  • Go to Donors Choose and make a donation to support a teacher, classroom and students.

  • Visit Scholar Match to find out how you can help a high-achieving, low-income student attend college.

  • If you love the local library, consider donating to the San Jose Public Library Foundation to enhance this resource for people in our community.


  • Host a group of two to five middle or high school students (ages 11-16) from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. at your workplace through Breakthrough Silicon Valley’s career day program.

  • Become an EcoCenter Docent with Environmental Volunteers and lead nature hikes, guide visitors on interactive touchscreen displays or share hands-on learning activities about local birds, native plants, earthquakes and more.

  • Teach a child how to read with Reading Partners.

  • Consider becoming a sports coach or a day camp counselor through a local YMCA.


  • Become an Alum Rock Counseling Center mentor and make a difference in a youth’s life.

  • Share your experience, skill, time and resources with Junior Achievement to help students understand the connections between school and success in work and life.

  • Volunteer with Project Cornerstone to read books and lead discussions about generating respect across school campuses.

  • Share your love of math once a week through the Silicon Valley Education Foundation’s Elevate [Math] summer program and help high school students hone their STEM skills.

  • Write a blog post for Edutopia, a leading voice illuminating and showcasing what works in education by showing people how they can adopt best practices and tell stories of innovation and continuous learning in the real world.


AllStars United Education Foundation

(408) 384-8247

AllStars works to provide a path for every child that leads not only to high performance in academics, arts and sports, but also to the continuous development of the six Habits of the Mind: think critically, learn continuously, work intentionally, communicate effectively, collaborate constructively and contribute globally.

Association for Environmental & Outdoor Education

AEOE hopes to advance the impact of environmental and outdoor education in California. They envision a world where every young person lives in a healthy community with access to meaningful learning experiences outdoors.

Assyrians For Education

AFE helps underprivileged cultural groups and new immigrants to assimilate into the American culture and achieve the American dream through education.

Breakthrough Silicon Valley

(408) 287-6357

Breakthrough Silicon Valley helps guide high potential, underserved middle school students on the path to college and inspires high school and college students to pursue careers in education.

Bring Me A Book Foundation

BMAB provides book access to underresourced children and families through partnerships with schools and other community-based organizations to support kindergarten readiness and grade level reading.


(650) 688-5840

BUILD is a four-year college readiness program whose mission is to use entrepreneurship-based, experiential learning to ignite the potential of youth in underresourced communities and equip them for high school, college and career success.

Center for Employment Training

(408) 534-5360

CET is an economic and community development corporation that promotes human development and education by providing people with marketable skills training and supportive services that contribute to self-sufficiency.

Children’s Discovery Museum

(408) 298-5437

Children’s Discovery Museum of San Jose inspires creativity, curiosity and lifelong learning through hands-on activities and exhibits.

City Year San Jose/Silicon Valley

(408) 907-6538

City Year is dedicated to helping students and schools succeed through economic support, afterschool programs and tutoring sessions in math and English.

College of Adaptive Arts

(408) 538-3809

The College of Adaptive Arts provides a lifelong, equitable collegiate experience for adults with special needs who historically have not had access to a college education.

Community School of Music and Arts

(650) 917-6800

CSMA inspires excellence through art and music education for people of all ages and abilities.

Computer History Museum

(650) 810-1010

Dedicated to preserving the artifacts and stories of the Information Age, the CHM is home to the largest international collection of computing materials in the world.

ConXión to Community

(408) 213-0961

ConXión to Community works to create new opportunities through culturally competent education, workforce development and social services to create a better community.

Downtown College Prep

(408) 271-8120

DCP prepares first-generation middle and high school students for college success.

Environmental Volunteers

(408) 244-2449

Environmental Volunteers promotes understanding of, and responsibility for, the environment through hands-on science education.

Every Child Outdoors Foundation

(831) 466-5175

The Every Child Outdoors Foundation reduces financial barriers to outdoor education for low-income students in Santa Cruz County.

Girls for a Change

(804) 405-2827

GFAC empowers young women by inviting them to design, lead, fund and implement social change projects that tackle issues girls face in their own neighborhoods.

​Hidden Villa

(650) 949-8650

Hidden Villa strives to foster educational experiences that build connections and inspire a deeper appreciation and respect for nature, food and one another. They provide beautiful acres for hikes and picnics and also have animal reserves and gardens for relaxation and education.

History San Jose

(408) 287-2290

History San Jose preserves and enriches the cultural heritage of San Jose and Santa Clara Valley through research, collections, partnerships, educational programs and events.


(408) 553-2266

Ignited connects business leaders and scientists with teachers to transform STEM education and the classroom experience, while inspiring students to become the next generation of innovators.

Innovate Public Schools

(650) 562-6200

Innovate Public Schools works to make sure that all students — especially low-income students and students of color — receive a world-class public education that prepares them for success in college, careers and beyond.


Jumpstart provides language, literacy and social-emotional programming for preschool children from underresourced communities and promotes quality early learning for all.

Junior Achievement of Northern California

Junior Achievement is dedicated to educating students about financial literacy, work readiness and entrepreneurship.


(650) 940-7402

JustREAD works to help underperforming students develop the literacy, math and self-confidence skills needed to graduate high school, pursue their dreams and become productive members of their communities.

Living Classroom

Living Classroom works to make education come alive and to empower the next generation by growing environmental champions, inquisitive learners and healthy eaters who know where their food comes from. They inspire children to learn about and to value the natural world through garden-based education.

Lyceum of Santa Clara Valley

(408) 278-5593

Lyceum is a self-supporting, parent participation organization that provides after-school enrichment classes and other opportunities for gifted children that might not otherwise be available to them.

Morgan Autism Center

(408) 241-8161

The center helps children and adults with autism or other developmental disabilities to maximize their potential in a dignified and positive learning environment.

My Digital TAT2

My Digital TAT2 addresses how to build healthy habits, critical thinking, and thoughtful online behavior in order to integrate technology into our lives in a constructive way.

Pacific Autism Center for Education

(408) 245-3400

PACE works to enhance the lives of people impacted by autism through innovation, education and compassionate care.


(408) 484-6200

Silicon Valley Children’s Fund and TeenForce merged to become Pivotal. They work to help foster youth achieve their dreams through impact-generating models that focus on high school and college-aged foster youth.

Project Cornerstone

(408) 351-6482

Project Cornerstone helps all children and teens in Silicon Valley feel valued, respected and known by building a web of support around young people so that they grow into healthy, caring and responsible adults.

RAFT (Resource Area for Teaching)

(408) 451-1420

RAFT provides creative ideas, affordable project materials, pre-packaged activity kits, one-on-one mentoring and professional development for educators who believe in the power of hands-on teaching.

Reading Partners

(408) 945-5720

Reading Partners works with underresourced schools and engages volunteer reading partners to help students who struggle with reading unlock and develop the foundational skills they need to succeed in school and in life.

Rocketship Public Schools

(877) 806-0920

Rocketship promotes change in low-income communities through a public school model that propels student achievement, develops exceptional educators and partners with parents who enable high-quality public schools to thrive in their community.

Rosicrucian Egyptian Museum

(408) 947-3635

The Rosicrucian Egyptian Museum is an educational institution that aims to increase knowledge about the past, present and future, especially related to the diversity and relationships in nature and among cultures.

San Jose Public Library Foundation

(408) 808-2081

The San Jose Public Library Foundation provides advocacy, financial support and leadership to our public libraries and educational programs throughout San Jose to create an educated, equitable and engaged community.

Science is Elementary

Science is Elementary works to empower generations to better the world through science and scientific thinking. It effects systemic change in elementary school science education by teaching students, training teachers and engaging the scientific community.

Silicon Valley Education Foundation

(408) 790-9400

SVEF is working to deliver and advocate for STEM education that inspires underserved students to succeed in college and careers.

The Tech Interactive

(408) 795-6205

The Tech Interactive is a family-friendly interactive science and technology center in San Jose with hands-on activities, experimental labs and design challenge experiences.

Think Together

(408) 946-2727

Think Together partners with schools to change the odds for kids. The organization equips students with the tools they need to succeed and equips schools with solutions that transform teaching and learning.

Vision Literacy

(408) 676-7323

By increasing literacy skills, Vision Literacy empowers adult learners to reach their personal goals, build confidence and develop a successful vision for their future.

Walden West Foundation

The Walden West Foundation seeks to make Outdoor School programing as accessible as possible to Santa Clara County students both financially and logistically. Established in 1996, the Walden West Foundation has helped to develop and foster collaborative science partnerships with leading Silicon Valley companies and educational institutions.

Youth Science Institute

(408) 356-4945

YSI works to inspire enthusiasm for science and a love of learning by offering hands-on, nature-based, science education.



This Field Guide chapter was edited by Sasha Mok.

​Sasha graduated Pioneer High School in 2021 and is attending UC Santa Barbara.

When she’s not editing the Field Guide, she likes to spend time studying, playing soccer and hanging out with her friends.

Sasha, who earned the silver Presidential Award for Community Service, loves to volunteer through tutoring with young students and has worked with Reading Partners, Castillero Tutoring Club and Jacob’s Buddies.

Sasha Mok