Be the difference.

Community volunteers and mentors are integral to the work we do, helping our Scholars develop academically, athletically and personally, from 6th grade through college and beyond.

Academic Volunteering

After-school homework help, one-to-one tutoring, english language support, guided reading and more for middle and high schoolers

Be part of our Academics team and help us close the opportunity gap

  • Supervised academic sessions take place every day after school at 1100 Merrill St, 77009 from 3.50pm-6.30pm
  • 20 hour minimum commitment, regular weekly schedule preferred
  • Training and background check provided
Enroll

Squash and Athletic Volunteering

Jump on court with our scholars to help them with drills, skills, fitness, testing and match play.

Join our scholars on court to help make them fit for a future of possibility

  • Squash sessions take place every day after school at 1100 Merrill St, 77009 from 3.50pm-6.30pm
  • Squash volunteers should be intermediate level (e.g. US Squash rating 3.5 or higher)
  • Athletic trainers should hold a personal or group training accreditation
Enroll

Mentoring

Be a source of support for a single student, year-round

Become career mentor to a student of similar interests to provide long term guidance, support and friendship

  • 10 face-to-face interactions per year plus a monthly phone call
  • 1 year commitment
  • Mission Squash-led Mentor party events
Learn More

Special Skills

Events, fundraising, grantwriting, office help, driving, trip chaperones, summer volunteering and more

Support the organization behind the scenes

Help the Mission Squash staff with event support, office assistance, fundraising expertise and more.
Apply

Why volunteer?

Volunteering with Mission Squash provides a structured way to help students from underserved communities improve their life outcomes by sharing with them your support, skills and experience.

Most volunteer roles involve working directly with students, and watching the hard work translate into results as students lift up their grades, become healthier, and develop outstanding character is incredibly valuable and rewarding.

  • All sessions (except Mentoring) are fully supervised by a member of the Mission Squash staff team
  • All volunteers are provided with training, a handbook and support materials
  • Some companies will provide employees with designated time (and in some cases a matching donation) for you to volunteer with community organizations. You can normally find out if this is an option for you by consulting your HR or Corporate Social Responsibility team.

What's the commitment?

When you start working with us, you become an integral part of the MS team. To ensure that our programming is consistent and high quality, volunteers commit to fulfilling a minimum number of hours per semester.

  • Academic Volunteers: 20 hours completed per semester, minimum 1 semester commitment. Regular weekday schedule preferred.
    Example: many volunteers attend once per week for a single 2 hour slot. 10 weeks of volunteering per semester would meet the requirement (a semester lasts around 18 weeks.) Sign-up for slots is required at least one week in advance.
  • Squash and Athletic Volunteers: 20 hours completed per semester, minimum 1 semester commitment.
    Sign up for slots is required at least one week in advance.
  • Mentors: 10 face-to-face interactions per year, each lasting a minimum of 90 minutes, plus one monthly phone call. Read more
  • Special Skills: opportunities for special skills volunteering are advertised throughout the year and are related to specific events, projects or programs.

What to expect when enrolling

Most of our volunteer roles are student-facing, and so if you are new to the organization, a staff member may request a brief phone conversation or meeting to get to know a bit more about you, your background, and your volunteering objectives.

Because we work with children, the safety and wellbeing of our Scholars is our top priority. All student-facing volunteer roles require a background check, and depending on your experience and the type of volunteering there may be some additional forms to fill out. Our Volunteer Manager will work closely with you throughout the enrollment process to make this as simple as possible.

Depending on the volunteer role you’ve chosen, you may be asked to visit our facility to observe practice and attend a short training session. To complete the sign up process, you will then be asked to review and sign our Volunteer Handbook which includes your commitment to follow our Volunteer Policies and Child Protection Policy. You’ll receive a detailed role description and some supporting materials to help you make the most of the volunteer role you have chosen.

You’re ready to get started! Sign up for regular volunteer slots is completed using our online Calendly system, allowing you to sign up for volunteer slots several weeks ahead. You will automatically receive an Outlook or iCal calendar invite to help you keep track of your sessions.

We track your volunteer hours for you and provide you with a monthly volunteer hours statement. As a volunteer, you are also welcome (and encouraged) to attend our all-staff meetings and annual events. For those wishing to get even more involved, volunteer leadership positions are also available.

The Fun Stuff

Volunteering with us gives you access to an exciting and incredibly fun community of well-connected professionals, mentors and educators who are passionate about investing in the future of Houston’s youth. This naturally includes the Houston squash community, but also extends to the major industries including insurance, finance and oil & gas through our Board and Young Professionals Board.

Our volunteers are an integral part of the organization. We welcome them at our major annual events, and hold special volunteer events  where we celebrate the commitment, achievement and impact of our volunteer work together.

Regular volunteers covet our special t-shirt line, available to those contributing 10 to 100 hours of service. The “Double Yellow Dot” shirt for 100 hours of service is especially sought after!

Volunteering FAQs

Yes! Mission Squash is an urban youth development program, and squash is only one-quarter of our programming alongside Academics, Mentoring, and College Access. We welcome volunteers with a range of skills. If you’re interested in volunteering but aren’t sure where to begin, please reach out to us and we will help to find the best possible opportunity for you.

We work with students from 6th-12th Grade, age 11-18.

Practices follow a two-week A/B schedule, with middle schoolers (age 11-14) attending after school on Monday, Wednesday and Friday, then Tuesday and Thursday the following week. High schoolers (age 15-18) attend on the alternate days.

All weekday practices consist of both academics and squash and run from 3.50pm to 6.30pm. Practice runs on every full HISD school day, except where trips or other events have been planned. See The Scholarship Program page for more general information about how the program operates.

If you’re considering working with our students in academics, squash or as a mentor but have limited experience working with children, it’s still possible to get involved. Please reach out to us for more information.

If you would rather volunteer in a non-student-facing role, there are a number of opportunities to help with Special Skills volunteering throughout the year.

Volunteer Organizations - partner with us

If you are involved with a volunteer organization or company that can provide regular tutors, adult professional mentors or athletic coaches to work with our Scholars, we’d love to work with you. Please reach out to the Volunteer Coordinator to kick things off.

Volunteer Spotlight: Jennifer

Jennifer hails from London and has been playing squash for 35 years. She learned about Mission Squash shortly after moving to Houston and thought it would be a good way to give back to her community.

She has been volunteering with Mission Squash since October 2015 and recently became one of our “Double Yellow Dot” volunteers, having given over 100 hours of service. She says the “enthusiasm and excitement” from the children during practice is what keeps bringing her back, as well as seeing them improve.

“There is a steep learning curve in squash,” says Jennifer, “it’s fun to see the progress that is made at the start of the Scholar’s Mission Squash careers!”

Jennifer’s two sons are also active Mission Squash volunteers when they return from boarding school for the holidays.