Because Friends of Refugees has operated in Clarkston since 1995, our organization has grown to include a variety of programs and ways to serve. For more details on each program, click on the heading for each section.

To get started as a volunteer, please CLICK HERE to register to attend Volunteer Orientation.

The realities of COVID-19 have required some of our programs to temporarily reduce or eliminate some volunteer roles. We eagerly await the day we can return to full operations. Until then, we hope you will take advantage of the following opportunities.


EMBRACE REFUGEE BIRTH SUPPORT: Support a Pregnant Refugee or New Mother

Pregnant refugee moms need help getting to doctor visits and sometimes need an advocate during the birthing process. New moms need someone to check up on them and to drive to prenatal, post-partum, and new-baby pediatric appointments. We provide a high level of PPE and maintain strict protocols for transporting someone in your personal car.

Volunteers can also help by facilitating a class, helping with childcare, picking up attendees, or bringing snacks. (In-person classes are currently offered Fridays 9am-1pm with an 8 week commitment requested.) Discover how you can get involved in the Friends of Refugees Embrace Program.


AGRICULTURE AND NUTRITION: Support a Refugee at the Jolly Avenue Garden

The Jolly Avenue Garden offers six agriculture and nutrition programs to refugees ranging in age from infants to the elderly. Join us for the monthly volunteer day and help our high school employees with various garden tasks (Saturdays, dates vary). Assist our gardeners with conversational English (M-W/F 1-5pm, scheduled in advance). Get to know the precious children at the garden by helping our staff with the Peace Growers (garden club) program. (June-July, Wednesdays 10:30am-12:00pm and 1:00-3:00pm; Fridays 10:30am-12:00pm.) Have any specialized skills (i.e., nutrition, education, curriculum development, construction, plumbing, electrical)? Volunteer with our program director and garden site manager to help with special projects. (Times flexible based on volunteer’s availability.) 


REFUGEE FAMILY LITERACY: Assist Mothers & Children Learning English (ages 0-4)

While mothers are in English classes, children ages 0-4 take part in our Early Childhood Development center. Engage some precious little ones and help them learn English in the process! Experienced ESOL assistants can volunteer in adult classrooms. Join our Refugee Family Literacy Program to make a difference in the lives of children and their families. Classes typically run Monday-Thursday mornings, 8:45am-12:30pm. Weekly commitment for one semester or various days/times.

NOTE: Thanks to outstanding community support, all of our volunteer slots with RFL are currently filled. Please check back next semester for possible openings. Thank you. 


START:ME SMALL BUSINESS ACCELERATOR: Grow Leaders in New Small Businesses 

At Start:ME, we partner with Emory’s Goizueta Business School to train new small business owners and teach them how to grow a business that will stand the test of time. Be a part of this unique program from January-April each year. (Wednesday, 6:00-9:00pm, Weekly, four month commitment.)


FRIENDS OF REFUGEES ADMINISTRATIVE TEAM: Make the Mission Possible Behind-the-Scenes

Program staff and volunteers in the community can only be as effective as the support they receive from the  many who are keeping everything running. We need volunteers who  are coordinating communication with clients and partners, entering data, coordinating event logistics, writing Thank You notes, designing social media, performing research, and the many other administrative needs.

Administrative volunteers can serve in a variety of capacities. There are one-time as well as on-going opportunities, some of which need no experience, while others could use some special skill sets. Most of these opportunities can be done from home and at times that are convenient for you.



Summer Youth Experience provides programming to help prevent summer learning loss and improve both physical and mental health outcomes through academic support and engaging, trauma-informed fitness classes. We also seek to nurture student’s own talents and develop positive, supportive relationships with their peers and staff. Volunteers are needed Monday, Wednesday, and Friday from June 6-July 29 (excluding July 4th week). For more details and link to the SYE volunteer form, click here!


CLICK HERE for an additional list of innovative and unique ways to support our programs while some traditional opportunities are limited due to Covid-19.