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Community Volunteer Workdays

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Community Volunteer Workdays

Since September 1991, on the third Saturday of each month from March through October, volunteers have helped with the work of creating and maintaining the 10-acre National AIDS Memorial Grove in Golden Gate Park. Individuals and groups of volunteers participate in gardening activities: clearing weeds and debris, mulching and hauling topsoil, planting new trees and shrubs, and other related activities within the Grove. Most volunteers find Community Volunteer Workdays to be a rewarding experience, and many first-time volunteers become regular participants. For questions related to Community Volunteer Workdays, please contact Steve Sagaser:

2022 Community Volunteer Workdays

March 19
April 16
May 21
June 18
July 16
August 20
September 17
October 15

About the Community Volunteer Workday Program

The National AIDS Memorial Grove is a 10-acre living memorial dedicated to lives touched by AIDS. It was conceived in 1988 by a group of San Franciscans whose community had been devastated by AIDS. They envisioned a local AIDS memorial, a healing garden, for all those wrought with grief. With the permission and support of the City of San Francisco, they selected the de Laveaga Dell in Golden Gate Park, which had fallen into a state of disrepair. In September of 1991, hundreds of volunteers gathered for the first Community Volunteer Workday, and over the next few years, completely transformed the site.

In addition to our designated City gardener, the 10 acres of the Grove have since been maintained by an average of 1,700 volunteers who provide an average of 4,500 hours of annual volunteer labor. Without this volunteer support, the site would revert back to a state of disrepair. Since 1991, 300,000 hours of labor has been donated by community volunteers who have removed countless tons of brush and debris, and planted over 10,000 trees, plants, and shrubs. Volunteers have also support large hardscape and infrastructure projects, including regular maintenance of engravings and hardscape features, resurfacing paths and roadways, trenching for the installation and repair electrical and irrigation systems, and other safety, security, and compliance needs. As the Grove ages, these projects are ever increasing, and without our volunteers, we wouldn’t be able to keep up.

There are eight regular Community Volunteer Workdays during the months of March through October, each on the third Saturday of the month. Volunteer Workdays start at 8:30am with registration and a breakfast of coffee, juices, bagels, and fruit, and after a brief introduction by a National AIDS Memorial board or staff member, our gardener explains the day’s various projects. Volunteers then break into teams and work under the supervision of trained team leaders. At 11:45am, work ends, and volunteers gather at noon for "Circle Time" for announcements, acknowledgement of sponsors, and a moment of silence in honor of lives lost to AIDS. Lunch is then provided to all volunteers.

What You Need To Know as a Volunteer

Breakfast, lunch, snacks, and beverages are provided to all volunteers. Gloves and tools are also provided. We suggest that you wear sturdy shoes, bring sunscreen, insect repellent, and a hat or cap. Please note that open toe shoes are not permitted. Please wear sturdy clothing (jeans and long-sleeved shirts are suggested) as we have discovered a few areas where poison oak is growing. Please advise your group of this fact; additionally, all volunteers are briefed on how to avoid coming into contact with the plant. All participants under the age of 18 must have a consent form signed by a parent/guardian prior to working at the Grove. Click Here to Download our required Workday Release Form to complete and sign ahead of time, or they will be available at the registration table (on Bowling Green Drive - east entrance of the Grove) on the morning of the Community Volunteer Workday.

If there are questionable weather conditions on the morning of a Community Volunteer Workday, please send an email to Steve Sagaser at to find out if the Workday was cancelled.

Groups of Five or Larger

Any groups of 5 or larger must contact the Grove at least three weeks in advance of a scheduled Community Volunteer Workday in order to confirm available space. Please send an e-mail to Steve Sagaser at

1 Shift

  • Sat Sep 17, 2022 - 08:30 AM to 12:30 PM - Spots available: 10+

1 More opportunity with NATIONAL AIDS MEMORIAL INC

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Mission Statement

Our mission is to share the story of the struggle against HIV/AIDS so that we remember, in perpetuity, the lives lost, we offer healing and hope to survivors, and we inspire new generations of activists in the fight against stigma, denial, and hate, for a just future. The vision of the National AIDS Memorial is that never again will a community be harmed because of fear, silence, discrimination, or stigma. Imparting the history and lessons of AIDS is at the core of our work, and through our iconic AIDS Memorials and inspiring programs, we seek to ensure that the story of AIDS, and the AIDS Movement, is known by current and future generations; that they stay engaged in the fight against HIV; be inspired to advance health, racial, and social justice efforts; and embrace diversity, equity, inclusion, and justice.


The National AIDS Memorial is the steward of our nations’ two most notable AIDS Memorials: The 10-acre National AIDS Memorial Grove ("the Grove") and the 54-ton AIDS Memorial Quilt ("the Quilt"), both created and located in San Francisco.

The Grove is a 10-acre living memorial located in San Francisco's Golden Gate Park dedicated to lives touched by AIDS. It is an outdoor living sanctuary where millions have gathered-and continue to gather-for healing, hope, remembrance, and historical information about AIDS and the AIDS movement for nearly three decades. In October 1996, through passage of legislation spearheaded by Representative Nancy Pelosi and signed by President Bill Clinton, the 'National AIDS Memorial Grove Act of 1996' designated the site a national memorial. It honors all who have died and their survivors, those living with HIV, and those who have fought (and continue to fight) to end it.

The AIDS Memorial Quilt is an epic, 54-ton tapestry that includes over 50,000 panels dedicated to more than 105,000 individuals who died from AIDS. Recognized around the globe, it is an iconic symbol of both the AIDS pandemic and AIDS activism. The largest community folk art project in the world, the Quilt advances HIV/AIDS awareness and engages and inspires individuals and communities in the fight against HIV/AIDS.


Children & Youth
Children & Youth, Community, LGBTQ+


Sat Sep 17, 2022
08:30 AM - 12:30 PM
This opportunity has 1 shift


National AIDS Memorial GroveNancy Pelosi Drive & Bowling Green DriveSan Francisco, CA 94122



  • Gardening
  • Horticulture


  • Kids
  • Teens
  • People 55+
  • Group


  • Volunteers under the age of 18 must have a Release Form completed and signed by a parent or legal guardian.

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