Ijams would not be Ijams without our dedicated volunteers. Each year, volunteers at Ijams log more than 10,000 hours of educational programming, trail maintenance, visitor services, and special events.

Volunteers support Ijams in many different ways:

  • Education Volunteers – Volunteer educators lead school group hikes, run public programs, set up touch tables and information booths, and much more. You don’t have to know every rock, tree, and bird at Ijams- We’re looking for people who are enthusiastic and willing to share their love of the outdoors with others.
  • Grounds Maintenance Volunteers – Three hundred acres is a lot of space, and we need folks who are ready to roll up their sleeves and get dirty! Our grounds volunteers maintain more than 12 miles of trails throughout the nature center by mulching, weeding, and removing invasive species. Volunteers also work in our greenhouse and organic gardens planting, propagating, and harvesting crops.
  • *NEW* Weed Wranglers Volunteers – Do you abhor invasive plants and the havoc they wreak on our environment? Ijams is building a team of invasive eradicators to help rid Ijams of invasive plants, and to take that message to the community. If you think you may be interested, sign up for one of our invasive removal workdays (see the list at the bottom of this page) to see if it’s a good fit. Folks who join the official team will receive specified training and resources to help you fight the green scourge!
  • Special Events Volunteers – Volunteers are essential in helping Ijams put on some of the biggest and best events in East Tennessee. From Movies Under the Stars to the Sunday Summer Concert Series to our spectacular Symphony in the Park, volunteers assist in every aspect of our events. Every month brings opportunities to help out with events big and small.
  • Information Desk Volunteers – Volunteers at the information desk serve as the face of Ijams. These volunteers answer the phones, help visitors navigate the trails, ring up sales in the gift shop, and provide excellent customer service to Ijams guests.
  • Behind the Scenes Volunteers – In every non-profit organization, “behind the scenes” volunteers are the unsung heroes. They enter data, look over spreadsheets, prepare materials, assist with office work, and generally keep the place running smoothly.

Can you think of other creative uses for your talents? Let us put your skills to work!

Due to the high demand for volunteer hours, our volunteer work days are scheduled in advance. Please make arrangements with Lauren to schedule your hours. Walk-in volunteers CANNOT be accommodated.  See below for a list of upcoming volunteer opportunities, and be sure to sign up if you are interested!

If you want to find out more about volunteering at Ijams, or if you have questions, feel free to contact our awesome Volunteer Coordinator, Lauren Bird, at (865) 577-4717 ex 135 or email her at lbird@ijams.org.


Upcoming Volunteer Opportunities

(volunteers must sign up in advance, email Lauren Bird at lbird@ijams.org to sign up; strike-through indicates volunteer needs filled)


Nov 10 (9am-noon) – Invasive Removal Workday

Dec 1 (9am-noon) – Invasive Removal Workday

Dec 9 (8am-11:30am) – Holiday Market vendor set-up

Dec 9 (3:30pm-5:30pm) – Holiday Market clean-up

Dec 15 (9am-noon) – Invasive Removal Workday