The Field Guide to Community Service
“Feminism isn’t about making women stronger.
Women are already strong, it’s about changing the way the world perceives that strength.”
― G.D. Anderson, feminist and activist
The next time a Girl Scout approaches you to purchase cookies, grab your wallet and buy some. It’s so simple (and yummy). If you don’t want to eat them yourself, drop the boxes off at the fire station, police department or local homeless shelter.
Donate a dress to Princess Project, which collects formal dresses and provides them to high school teens who otherwise could not afford prom dresses.
Check out the annual Santa Clara County Women’s Leadership Policy Summit.
If you find yourself not reaching for a clothing item anymore, donate it to FrontDoorCommunities. Front door communties stocks their boutique with donated clothes and allows women to shop for free. If you’re having a hard time finding what to donate specifically check out their wishlist.
Share your story of courage – whether it was a victory of courage or a time when you wish you were courageous – anonymously through InHerShoes.
Dress for Success needs volunteers for personal shopping, career mentoring and to serve as speakers.
Grateful Garment has many ways for volunteers to help, from the nitty gritty work helping with intake of donations to becoming a weekend warrior.
Become a FAN for Bay Area Women’s Sports Initiative. The Female Athlete Network (FAN) act as stewards of an impressive legacy of women’s sports, and events allow the organization to remain educated and prepared to influence local conversation and debate that support future generations of female athletes.
Girls on the Run needs volunteer coaches. Coaches can be male or female and need not have running or coaching experience; you just need enthusiasm for healthy living and the desire to empower young girls.
Join Habitat for Humanity’s Women’s Crew, which brings women together monthly to make a difference, from volunteering to fundraising.
American Association of University Women
AAUW advances equity for women and girls through advocacy, education, philanthropy and research.
Bay Area Women’s Sports Initiative
BAWSI mobilizes the women’s sports community to engage, inspire and empower children who need us the most. Its programs focus on increasing resiliency in children living with adversity.
Blossom Birth & Family works to connect new and expectant families in the Bay Area with services, resources and support for a healthy, informed and confident pregnancy and parenting journey.
Dress for Success provides professional attire, a network of support and career development tools to help disadvantaged women thrive in work and in life.
Front Door Communities supports and serves homeless and at-risk men and women in downtown San Jose. One of Front Door's programs is Lifted Spirits, a women’s drop-in center that provides a safe place for homeless women to receive a meal, shower and socialization. The center collects clothing and hygiene product donations to give to women.
Girl Scouts of Northern California
Girl Scouting builds girls of courage, confidence and character who make the world a better place.
Girls on the Run Silicon Valley
Girls on the Run inspires girls (3rd thru 8th grade) to be joyful, healthy and confident using curriculum that creatively integrates running.
The Grateful Garment Project ensures that victims of sexual crimes are provided with whatever new clothing, toiletries, snacks and other miscellaneous items that he or she needs.
Habitat for Humanity East Bay/Silicon Valley
Habitat for Humanity brings people together to build homes, communities and hope. They have many volunteer opportunities, including Women’s Crew, which brings women together to make a difference.
InHerShoes is committed to encouraging girls and women around the world to live and create courageously. The organization takes a stand for freedom of expression, assertion of npassion and pursuit of possibility in every aspect of their lives.
The Junior League is committed to developing the potential of women, improving the community, and promoting volunteerism through the effective action and leadership of trained volunteers.
March of Dimes improves the health of babies by preventing birth defects, premature birth and infant mortality.
Mothers’ Milk Bank provides safe and processed breast milk for babies who are under the care of a health care professional.
NCL fosters the mother-daughter relationship through community service, leadership development and cultural experiences.
Next Door Solutions to Domestic Violence
Next Door Solutions is dedicated to domestic violence and creates paths for women to achieve safety, stability and self-sufficiency.
Parisi House helps support women on their journey to break free from addiction while helping them get tools for their lives to become better parents. They are one of the only residental Bay Area drug and alcohol treatment centers that allows moms to stay with their children.
100+ Women is a giving circle that empowers women to learn about local nonprofits and then donate $100 directly to the organization by joining together with other women and creating a powerful impact in our local area.
PWC is a 50-voice women’s choir performing high-quality classical and contemporary music. The chorus envisions a future as a vibrant music making community where women collaborate to create transcendent musical moments beyond their imaginations.
The Princess Project promotes self-confidence and individual beauty by providing free prom dresses and accessories to high school teens who cannot otherwise afford them. High school students can organize a dress drive at school.
RWC works to develop musical excellence in an atmosphere of mutual support and respect. The chorus performs publicly for the entertainment, education and cultural enrichment of the community.
San Jose Woman’s Club supports the city’s cultural, educational, civic and community initiatives through charitable works and financial gifts.
Shine gives young moms the tools and resources they need to thrive as students and parents.
The Women's Building is a women-led nonprofit arts and education community center located in San Francisco that advocates self-determination, gender equality and social justice.
The Women's Daytime Drop-In Center provides a safe space, warm meals, counseling, and support to identify housing to any homeless woman and her children during the day, when shelters are closed.
YWCA Golden Gate Silicon Valley
The YWCA Golden Gate Silicon Valley is dedicated to eliminating racism, empowering women and promoting peace, justice, freedom and dignity for all.
Get educated and educate others.
Walk your neighborhood.
Remember a nonprofit in your will.
Find out if your company has matching donations.
Work on a political campaign.
This Field Guide chapter was edited by Layla Shukla-Degen in 2023.
Layla is a student at Pioneer High School in San Jose who will graduate in 2025.
When she isn’t editing the Field Guide, she enjoys spending time outdoors, especially when it’s with friends and pets. She is also the secretary of the women’s empowerment club at Pioneer where she continues to focus on helping women on a local level.
The 2019 editor was Annie Fisher who is now production coordinator for Motion Team at WC+Aa.