Volunteer Program

Volunteers play an essential role in inspiring and engaging our audiences and supporting behind-the-scenes work. Volunteers greet and welcome visitors, provide information and tours, and support staff in a variety of functions.

The National Museum of African American History and Culture (NMAAHC) is currently accepting applications for Children’s Program Volunteers to support the Early Childhood Education Initiative.  Plans for future volunteer recruitment are TBD. Please continue to check our website periodically for updates.  

Children’s Program Volunteer Opportunities

Do you enjoy working with young children?  Become a Children’s Program Volunteer and enhance the museum experience for our youngest visitors and their caregivers at the National Museum of African American History and Culture (NMAAHC)! 
The Early Childhood Education Initiative supports the understanding and development of each child’s healthy racial identity, their joy in human diversity and inclusion, their sense of justice, and their capacity to act for their own and others’ fair treatment. Volunteers will contribute to this mission by assisting with children’s programs that include music performances, story times, infant and toddler programs, community and family events, hands-on and craft activities and more.
Required Skills & Abilities

  • Previous experience in working with diverse families, students, and/or children, ages 0 to 8, in an educational or community-based environment.  
  • Commitment to implementing anti-bias education programs in a museum environment in age appropriate ways.
  • Have an interest in working in history and early childhood education.
  • Foreign language skills are helpful but not required. 

All abilities are welcome. We have different roles available for individuals based on their physical abilities.

  • Background check is required
  • Must be 18 years of age or older
  • Complete trainings led by museum described below

Scheduling Requirements

  • Minimum commitment of 1 year
  • Suggested volunteer commitment of 2 programs/month (averaging to 4 – 6 hours monthly)
  • Most programs take place weekday mornings and early afternoons. (Tuesday through Thursday, 10am to 12pm, First Saturday programs monthly, occasional Saturday signature events)


  • In-person training workshops on select Saturdays, starting May 2019. Content will include anti-bias education, child development, and methods in museum education.
  • Smithsonian Protection of Minors Training is required.

How to Apply
Due to the large number of applications we receive, only those selected to participate in the program will be contacted. 

Apply for the NMAAHC Children’s Program Volunteer Position


Frequently Asked Questions

Due to overwhelming interest, we are unable to respond to individual public inquiry.

We plan to offer a Virtual Volunteer Program. Please indicate your interest in that when you sign up for volunteer opportunity alerts.

Volunteer positions do not transition into permanent positions. If you are seeking employment, please monitor announcements on the Smithsonian Institution Office of Human Resources website and apply via USA Jobs.

At this time the NMAAHC is unable to accept submissions for activities, exhibitions, programs, publications, and tours.

The Office of Equal Employment and Minority Affairs (OEEMA) ensures compliance with regulatory guidelines and Institutional policies as they relate to diversity and equal opportunity; the office provides direction, oversight, facilitation, and reports on all aspects of equal opportunity (EO) in the Smithsonian Institution's employment and business relationships.

Learn more about the Smithsonian’s EEO policy.

Everybody can be great because anybody can serve.

Martin Luther King Jr. Civil Rights Activist

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