Welcome to Volunteer Mid-South

Volunteer Mid-South is at the heart of volunteering, building capacity for effective volunteering and connecting people with opportunities to serve throughout Memphis and Shelby County. We work with nonprofits, churches, schools, corporations, and other groups that engage volunteers to make community programs stronger.


Our mission is to develop, promote and support volunteerism.


Originally known as The Volunteer Center of Memphis, the organization was established in 1975 by the Junior League of Memphis & the National Council of Jewish Women. In 2000, we changed our name to Volunteer Memphis. In 2006, in an effort to establish ourselves as a comprehensive "all things volunteer" organization and to better serve local volunteers, we merged with HandsOn Memphis. Volunteer Memphis and HandsOn Memphis evolved into Volunteer Mid-South in 2009.

What We Do

  • Mobilize volunteers to make a difference in their communities.
  • Assist community organizations and businesses in developing successful volunteer programs that offer meaningful, effective volunteer opportunities.
  • Promote the power of volunteerism and community service throughout the Mid-South.
  • Play a critical role in fostering a strong network among nonprofit, public, and business sector organizations and ordinary citizens, united by the overarching goal of improving local communities.

How We Do It

Community Services

·         Volunteer Expo was held on February 19, 2013 at Oak Court Mall.  The event attracted 65 participating nonprofit agencies to promote their organization to hundreds of potential volunteers and donors. 

·         Share the Spirit of Giving was held on December 6th and 7th, engaged over 350 volunteers in service with 5 Memphis City Schools in low-income neighborhoods, serving nearly 3,000 needy children and distributing more than 5,500 books. In the past 11 years, we have delivered books and toys to over 85,000 students at 107 different Title 1 schools.

·         Hands on Technology allows our nonprofit partners to post referrals on our website and gives them additional volunteer management tools at no cost.  Currently, over 230 volunteer referrals are available each month.  Our website sees at least 1,000 visits a week and each visit averages more than a half dozen “click-throughs”

·         Monthly email newsletter with volunteer opportunities reaches 7,900+ Mid-Southerners.

·         Volunteer Tips are published weekly in the Saturday issue of the Commercial Appeal thanks to an exclusive partnership with the newspaper with an average of 75 volunteer opportunities presented each week. 

·         Nonprofit Partners – we currently nearly 500 nonprofit agencies registered as partners with Volunteer Mid-South.

·         Spirit of Giving Awards was held April 25.  It is the largest volunteer recognition event in the Mid-South.  More than 400 people attended the event to honor and recognize 82  volunteers and volunteer programs in 7 different categories: Adult, Youth, Small Group, Large Group, Senior, Outstanding Volunteer Program, and Board Member of the Year. 

Flexible Volunteering

FLEX offers opportunities for people to serve in flexible, organized volunteer-led projects that affect the lives of others.  We hold approximately 20 monthly projects at various nonprofit agencies in and around the Mid-South including: St Jude, Lichterman Nature Center, Shelby Farms, Grizzlies House, Target House, Youth Villages, Playhouse on the Square & Circuit Playhouse, Friends for life, Ronald McDonald House and more. 

Days of Service

·         Martin Luther King, Jr. Day of Service we partnered with FedEx for a corporate day of service that brought almost 100 volunteers together at four different sites: Memphis Academy of Health Sciences, the civil rights Museum, the Memphis Botanic Garden and Knowledge Quest. 

·          Altria Day of Service was held at KIPP Charter School and brought 35 volunteers to make improvements to their sports facilities, library, dance studio, classrooms, hallways and power-washed  the exterior of all school buildings.  Altria purchased $12,000 in materials and supplies for the project. 

·         Hilton Worldwide partnered with Volunteer Mid-South to rally 77 participants and invest more than $14,000 for projects at one of their Alpha Omega apartment facilities for veterans.  Projects ranged from building a meeting pavilion for the residents, to painting, landscaping and building handicap accessible garden beds.  While the projects were happening, Hilton Executives served at a special lunch for all of the Alpha Omega residents.  

·         Volunteer Mid-South partnered with Home Depot to bring together 25 volunteers and $4,000 in supplies to complete renovations to home of worker killed in a chemical plant explosion. 

·         Home Depot partnered with Clean Memphis and Volunteer Mid-South on MLK Day to bring together 20 volunteers and $2,000 in supplies to build a wheelchair ramp on a difficult site for the victim of a drive-by shooting in the Lemoyne Owen neighborhood.   

Corporate Volunteer Council

·         The Corporate Volunteer Council (CVC) chaired by Katie Maxwell of SunTrust Bank, is the “go-to” group for best practices and knowledge sharing in the area of corporate social responsibility and engagement for its 20 members.  ·         The CVC hosts 8 professional development/training meetings annuallyOn November 8, 2012 the CVC hosted its 26th annual Corporate Neighbor Awards celebrating outstanding community involvement and corporate volunteer programs and the important work they do in Memphis.  At the event 37 companies and corporate employees were nominated for awards in 5 categories – Employee Spirit, Outstanding Project, Neighbor of the Year/Small Company, Neighbor of the Year/Large Company and Executive Leadership.

Board Connection·         Works to identify and train individuals in the roles and responsibilities of nonprofit board service. We also assist in the referral of candidates with nonprofit agencies. ·         Board Connection Training – most recently held on February 26, 2013 and had a full class of 32 students from local nonprofits, corporations and individuals seeking information about board service. The training is collaboration with the University of Memphis, Division of Public & Nonprofit Administration.

Disaster Preparedness
·         Currently participating in the remobilizing of Mid-South VOAD - Voluntary Organizations Active in Disaster.  Our Executive Director serves as the organization’s Treasurer.  ·         FEMA Training – In February 2013 our Executive Director attended FEMA training on Managing Volunteers in Times of Disaster that also focused on creating a “virtual volunteer center” online through Volunteer Mid-South’s existing Connect software.  Active in Citizen Corps – in conjunction with the Emergency Management Agency (EMA).

Youth and Family Volunteerism
·         Mid-South Teen Summer Volunteer Fair was held April 30, 2013 and placed over 250 teens in volunteer positions with 24 different nonprofit agencies.  Participation in the Fair is offered at no cost to nonprofit partners.   ·         Provide Ongoing Referrals throughout the year for individual teens, families and school groups. ·         Developed family service learning projects with the Clean Memphis and Friends For Life where families learned about specific community issues while volunteering.

Tool Shed

Volunteer Mid-South maintains a free tool shed for nonprofit and community partners.  Tools are loaned for various projects and days of service to the community.  Some of the partners using the tool shed were Clean Memphis, Baptist Healthcare, Friends for Life, Memphis City Beautiful, Wolf Rover Conservancy, Shelby Farms Park, Comcast, The Food Bank, FedEx, Memphis Academy of Health Sciences, Altria, Porter-Leath, American Express, and KIPP Charter School.

Our Staff


Mark Dean Executive Director/CEO (901)523-2425
(ext. 214)

Susan Epperson

Programs Coordinator

(ext. 205)

Amanda Kiser

Community/Agency Services Director

(ext. 200)

Sandra Palazolo

Community Relations Director

(ext. 212)



2013 Board of Directors
Lisa Harris

President Elect
Kathy Simonetti

Stacey Hollingsworth

Adrianne Brown

Immediate Past President
Ed Coleman

Andrew Bartolotta
DeAngelo Brooks
Leigh Chiles
Madelyn Gray
Jennifer Quintero Hughes
Bevan Lee
Simone Meeks
Beth Nickelson
Kristen Waddell