Volunteer support is vital to our work here at Breathe. We need your help! Please take a look at our volunteer opportunities below. You can also visit our Employment Opportunities page to find available volunteer and internship openings.
Download a PDF with information about becoming a Breathe California Volunteer.
We’re gearing up for our 25th annual Bike 4 Breath fund-raising ride in July 2016. We’ll be looking for help with expo set-up, registration, serving breakfast and lunch, course monitoring, rest and water stops and the cheering squad. Sign up to volunteer or learn more about Bike 4 Breath 2016.
Health Fair Assistant
We are looking for volunteers interested in representing Breathe California at health fairs. The fairs are held at places like colleges, community agencies, and corporations. Volunteers will staff a booth from which they will distribute literature as well as promote our agency’s programs and services.
We are always looking for volunteers interested in assisting us with general office support such as creating Word and Excel documents, filing, copying, doing data entry, bulk mailings, and stamping literature. Volunteers may be trained to help direct callers to the right resources.
Do you or your team have special skills to share with Breathe California? We welcome your support! From program evaluation, marketing/branding and fundraising to social media and blog contributions, give us a call and let’s connect! We look forward to hearing new project ideas to help us strengthen our work to better serve our community!
Learn about internship positions that we are currently seeking to fill.
Board of Directors
Are you interested in learning about non-profit governance and participating on the Board of an century old nonprofit? Contact Tanya Stevenson, our President and CEO.
Contact us today:
Breathe California Golden Gate
1 Sutter Street, Suite 225
San Francisco, CA 94104-4924
Phone: (650) 994-5868
Fax: (415) 445-3000
Volunteer with Us
NATALIE ANDRADE – HEALTH EDUCATION ASSOCIATE INTERNBefore entering my last and final semester at San Francisco State University, I had the chance to review some possible internship sites in the Bay Area. When I came across Breathe California as a potential internship site, I realized this was the place where I wanted to intern.
Environmental health and fighting for environmental justice has always been a target area of focus of mine and I wanted to gain further experience in working for a non-profit that was committed to doing just that. Breathe has strong ties in the community, which shows the success they have had in building trustworthy relationships through its programs and advocacy.
Before starting my internship, my career goals consisted of improving my professionalism through writing and speaking, becoming a better public speaker, learning the process of policy work, and becoming an advocate for individuals in the community.
After six months at Breathe, I was able to meet my goals with the help of my amazing preceptor, Karen, and other staff members. They have become my mentors, friends, and guidance through my journey of becoming a health educator.
Throughout my time at Breathe, I was able to:
- conduct outreach and recruitment in the community,
- testify at city council meetings in support of smoke-free multi-unit housing,
- speak at the San Francisco Board of Appeals hearing to prevent tobacco retailers from selling tobacco products to minors,
- research peer-review journal articles for data on recovery and smoking,
- collaborate in creating outreach materials, and
- develop activities for a policy training of over twenty participants.
These accomplishments would not have been possible without the support from my colleagues here at Breathe California. I am proud to be a part of a great team fighting for the same causes!
Health Education Associate
PROFILE OF A VOLUNTEER: SIMON LEEIf he had searched, it’s unlikely that Simon would have come across an event more perfect for him to dedicate volunteer time to than Bike 4 Breath. An avid cycler for the last decade and a staunch advocate for clean air, clean lungs, and a healthy community, Simon and Breathe California were meant for each other.
About seven years ago, Simon came across an ad for Bike 4 Breath. He liked the title of the event, and he signed up to volunteer. In the beginning he volunteered at rest stops, passing out water, making sure the riders were keeping well hydrated. It didn’t take long, however, for Simon’s enthusiasm to get noticed, and for the event manager to nominate him to step in as an organizer. The Site and Gear (SAG) coordinator was leaving, and the event team needed a reliable individual to take over. Simon was the obvious choice, and since those early years he has taken on more responsibilities as part of the day-of logistics team. There is a, “camaraderie among staff,” he says, “[we] often have common interests, and I’ve even met some of my current cycling buddies through Bike 4 Breath.” Simon knows that volunteering is about more than the event itself, “it contributes to a well rounded lifestyle [and helps people] find a way to tap into skills, talents or interests that we may not be able to use everyday.” It’s a way of life, an attitude.
In addition to finding the perfectly placed Bike 4 Breath ad, Simon chose to dedicate his time to Breathe California because he deeply believes in the cause. Not only is he strongly against cigarette smoke, he calls it, “the flip side of cycling.” He makes the observation that, “one is beneficial for the individual and the community, and the other is the opposite.” The fact that smoking cigarettes contributes substantially to water and air pollution is a sticking point for Simon. “There are many vices that we all have,” he says, “and some are pretty harmless to others. You may hurt yourself at most, but the addiction to nicotine and smoking not only hurts the individual, it hurts everyone.” Simon sees the work of the organization as somewhat of an antidote. “The work of Breathe California, like Ash Kickers, is taking steps to help people get off of it [smoking] entirely. That may be wishful thinking on my part, but at least instead of feeling totally powerless I’m taking some steps to help make progress.” This type of wishful thinking is the kind that contributes to lasting change, and Simon is certainly doing his part to move our communities toward being smoke free.
VOLUNTEER PROFILE | AVERYOn July 12th, 5-year old Avery rode in Breathe California’s 23rd Annual Bike for Breath charity bike ride at Coyote Point in San Mateo. This was his third year participating in the event but it was the first time he rode all 10 miles on his own – with no help from Mom or Dad!
When we asked him why he supports Breathe California, he said, “I ride in the Bike 4 Breath bike race because I have friends at preschool who can’t breathe well because they have asthma. It isn’t fair that they can’t always run and play on the playground with me because they are sick. Sometimes they don’t even come to school.”
Avery fundraised over $500 for the event by asking his friends and family to give money to “help kids breathe, play, and stay in school.” He also shared that he gave some of his own hard-earned money this year because “I miss my friends when they can’t play with me. I want them to breathe better so they can ride with me next year!”
We are grateful for and inspired by Avery’s generosity and dedication. We look forward to seeing him ride again next year and know his hard work WILL help kids with asthma. Breathe California is proud to partner with Avery!
Avery, Age 5
3-time Bike 4 Breath participant
ANGIE COVITA | A VOLUNTEER PROFILEAngie’s involvement with Breathe California began as a mandate. Well, sort of. Volunteering was the mandate, Breathe California was the obvious choice. A requirement for school, Angie studied public health and will be applying to medical school soon, she chose to dedicate her volunteer time to Breathe California because of the nature of the work. She likes lungs.
Angie worked in the Breathe California office two or three days a week, and she had the opportunity to work on a variety of projects. Over the course of three months, she helped out with Bike 4 Breath doing administrative work and participating in brainstorming sessions, she participated in a health fair where attendees could look at models of the lung and see how certain toxins affect them, and she helped around the office however was necessary (doing research, seeking out in kind donations, editing forms, putting paperwork together, etc.). Angie’s commitment to Breathe California, in addition to being interested in lungs, stems from personal experience. For one thing, she had asthma as a kid, and finds it, “really cool to help educate other people,” on the significance of this. In general, Angie likes health education, and she understands the importance of building awareness around issues like smoking and lung health. The fact that Breathe California is so steadfast in its mission, family oriented, and extremely effective when it comes to disseminating information makes it, “different from other organizations,” Angie says.
Not only did Angie have the opportunity to educate while volunteering with Breathe California, she also did her fair share of learning. A common issue among young people these days, Angie’s friends included, is vaping. Vaping has been marketed as a smart alternative to smoking traditional cigarettes, and the research on its effects are still in infancy. Angie took this information to heart. “I can take [what I’ve learned] and tell my friends,” she says, “it [vaping] is not even FDA approved.” Angie strives to be an advocate, not only for lung health, but for mindfulness too. “Think about everything you’re taking in that you’re breathing all the time. We’ve got to pass the knowledge forward,” she states. She’s absolutely right. Knowledge and education are critically important when it comes to lung health, and it takes people like Angie with drive and gumption to spread the word.
ARA BAILAN, BIKE 4 BREATHE CLEAN AIR CHAMPIONDo you want to support lung health, but don’t know how? There are many ways to contribute and help us fight lung disease! Whether it’s in the office, at events, or out in the community, there’s a place for you. Check out Ara’s story.
Ara Balian has been volunteering for Breathe CA since 2013. A dedicated Bike 4 Breath rider on Team Be-Spokes, Ara raises funds for Breathe CA each year to help fight lung disease! In addition to helping the organization each July during Bike 4 Breath, Ara also utilizes his incredible photography talent and serves as an occasional volunteer photographer for Breathe CA. Thank you, Ara!
We welcome you to join us for Bike 4 Breath. Registration is now open!