Volunteer Needs

Volunteer group paintingVolunteering at Norfolk Botanical Garden is not only gardening! Volunteers work in every department, inside and outdoors. Yes, there is lots of mulching and weeding to done year-round, but volunteers also do paperwork, work in maintenance, and even do virtual volunteering from home! Volunteer opportunities below are listed by type, with special events first and ongoing volunteer needs second. If you have questions, or need more information, please call Amanda Wells at (757) 441-5830 extension 327, or e-mail volunteer@nbgs.org. We look forward to working with you!

Everything you do makes a difference.



Gardening Assistant

Weekdays, 9 a.m. – Noon or 1 – 3:00 p.m.
Come and garden in 155 acres of beauty. You don’t need to have experience, you’ll learn as you grow. This is not a one day assignment, but designed for people who want to work and learn for at least a season. (Minimum age 16, or must be accompanied by parent/guardian.)

We can schedule a special group gardening day when your organization can come to the Garden, work for a few hours, then enjoy the Garden the rest of the day. Contact us for information.


Senior Leaders in Training

Norfolk Botanical Garden WOW Children’s Garden is a great place for teenagers to learn about nature, gain leadership skills, make new friends and earn volunteer hours for college applications and resumes. Volunteer as a Camp Leader and/or WOW Leader. Cost: $25 ($20 NBG Members) includes Leaders in Training WOW Mornings, orientation, T-shirt, WOW Book Club and End of Summer Party. http://norfolkbotanicalgarden.org/education/teen-programs/

 WOW Leader Volunteer

• Greet guests and provide general information about the Children’s Garden and NBG.
• Set up and teach Discovery Cart activities at various locations throughout WOW. Topics include botany, plant & animal identification, vegetable gardening, arts and crafts and more! All information is included with activity guides.
• Support a clean and safe environment through light indoor and outdoor cleaning and activity preparation.
• Shifts are almost entirely outdoors.
• Hours/Dates: June-August * Monday-Sunday 9AM-7PM (Partial- Day shifts available)
• Minimum age 13, or must be accompanied by a parent/guardian.

Wow Guide

Volunteer shifts:
9:30 AM – 1:00 PM
12:30 – 4:00 PM
Any day of the week
Times can be flexible

Volunteers in the World of Wonders Children’s Garden greet visitors, help with activities and make sure everyone has fun. Junior (10-12) and family volunteers welcome (youngest family member must be at least 10 and accompanied by parent/guardian).

Background check and training required. Requires at least a 5 shift commitment.

Library Assistant

Saturdays 11 a.m. – 3 p.m. or Sundays 1 – 4 p.m. or Mondays 11 a.m. – 3 p.m.
Attention Book Lovers! Norfolk Botanical Garden is looking for weekend Library Assistants for the Fred Huette Library. Work with the public, learn library skills, and enjoy a fine horticultural library. A great once a month volunteering opportunity. (Minimum age 16, or must be accompanied by parent/guardian.)

Butterfly House Guide

June 13 – September 21, seven days a week
9:45 AM – 11:45 AM or 11:30 AM – 1:30 PM or 1:15 – 3:15 PM or 3:00-5:00 PM or 4:45-6:45 PM

The very popular Butterfly House returns this summer as part of our Mission Monarch!  Visitors are wowed seeing butterflies up close and personal, and are encouraged to see the Bristow Butterfly Garden nearby.  Don’t worry if you don’t know about butterflies and plants, you’ll get the information and training you need to make this a special visit for each and every person who steps into the magical Butterfly House. This opportunity requires at least a 5 shift commitment. (Minimum age 16, unless accompanied by a parent/guardian).

Butterfly House Orientations (New volunteers contact Volunteer Services to schedule an orientation)

Butterfly House Trainings (New and returning volunteers suggested to attend 1 session for educational opportunity)

  • August 5- 2:00-4:00 PM

Garden Ambassadors

Starting March 29, 2014
Any day of the week, weekends preferred
10:00 AM-12:00 PM or 12:00 PM-2:00 PM or 2:00 PM-4:00 PM

Enjoy meeting people? Inside or outside,  you can be the “smiling face” of the Garden. Welcome visitors to the Norfolk Botanical Garden and provide information to help them make the most of their visit. This opportunity requires at least a 5 shift commitment. (Minimum age 16, or must be accompanied by parent/guardian.)


Administrative Support

Weekdays, some weekends possible
Looking for indoor work with no heavy lifting? Want beautiful scenery nearby? This is the volunteer opportunity for you. Work in education and other departments to help get that all important paperwork done. Junior volunteers (14 – 17) welcome.

Facilities Support

Seven days a week, weekends preferred
Flexible shifts, usually 2-3 hours during the hours of 9 am – 5 pm
This is for people who enjoy hard work and seeing immediate results. Must be able to lift up to 50 pounds. Assist with room set ups and cleaning. Work with the facilities crew and be an important part of making the Garden shine. This can be a one shift assignment. (Minimum age 16, or must be accompanied by parent/guardian.)

Education Volunteer

Weekdays 9:00 AM-Noon or 1:00 PM-4:00 PM
This position is for a dynamic person who should be prepared to get crafty and shouldn’t mind getting their hands dirty. You may be helping prepare for upcoming classes, working on a computer, or helping maintain flower arrangements. The possibilities are endless! This is not a one day assignment, but designed for people who want to work and learn. (Minimum age 16.) We require a 2-day shift commitment each month.