No matter your age or level of experience, you have something to contribute to making San Diego’s crown jewel shine! Join the Balboa Park Conservancy and its primary partner, the City of San Diego Department of Parks and Recreation, to help enhance the visitor experience, sustain our precious cultural and environmental resources, and become a steward of one of the world’s greatest urban parks. We provide the training and gear—you provide the enthusiasm and love of Balboa Park.

See below for the current slate of volunteer opportunities with the Balboa Park Conservancy.


Park Ambassadors work “in the field” to greet park guests and start them on their exploration of Balboa Park. They also act as the eyes and ears of the Parks and Recreation department to help keep visitors and the park safe.

Stationed at key park hubs and entry points, Park Ambassadors are friendly and knowledgeable volunteers who share up-to-date information about Balboa Park’s museums, history, gardens, and other amenities to guests. Our Ambassadors are briefed daily about any special events in the park, closures, or traffic issues. Park Ambassadors work in teams of two outdoors at the three major plazas in the historic center of the park. They are trained on when and how to alert park staff to maintenance needs and safety issues should they arise.

Park Ambassador Candidates Are:

  • Over the age of 18
  • Enthusiastic and outgoing
  • Effective communicators (bilingual skills are very helpful)
  • San Diegans with prior knowledge of Balboa Park and San Diego in general
  • Able to complete 20 hours of orientation training
  • Willing to attend additional meetings as required
  • Willing to complete a background check and fingerprinting (at no cost)
  • Available to work four 4-hour shifts per month (with exceptions)
  • Able to make a 2-year commitment (a 1-year commitment is acceptable)
  • Able to remain standing/walking outdoors during much of the 4-hour shift (10am–2pm)
  • Able to set up/take down the shade structure and chairs (stored in nearby building) with the help of their partner 

To learn more or to apply, please email Andrea Smith, our Volunteer Project Manager:


Balboa Park has more than 15,000 trees, and every one needs TLC! Tree Stewards are our urban forest warriors who work with Parks and Rec to help these precious green resources thrive. Be part of an elite volunteer corps that monitors the health and well-being of hundreds of newly planted trees and thousands of legacy trees in need of conservation.

Balboa Park’s tree collection is an extraordinary asset to our region. As such, their adequate care requires dedicated support from tree lovers like you. Tree Stewards are specially trained to monitor newly planted trees, general health conditions of existing trees, soil moisture surrounding new trees, including identifying irrigation needs, and possible pest infestation.

Tree Stewards generally work in teams of two in an assigned zone of the park and also serve as the eyes and ears of the Parks and Rec department, alerting its staff to any concerns.

Balboa Park Tree Stewards Are:

  • Over the age of 18
  • Passionate about trees
  • Interested in learning to identify tree species
  • Able to walk around a predetermined zone to observe and monitor trees
  • Willing to work 6-8 hours each month in 2-to-4-hour shifts
  • Available to complete 10 hours of orientation training
  • Able to remain outdoors during the entire shift
  • Willing to complete a background check and fingerprinting (at no cost)
  • Able to make a 1-year commitment

To learn more or to apply, please email Andrea Smith, our Volunteer Project Manager:


Garden Stewards help the City of San Diego Parks and Recreation Department and Balboa Park Conservancy staff with routine garden maintenance of 18 magnificent gardens within Balboa Park, while greeting and orienting visitors at each garden site. This volunteer position helps restore and maintain gardens to their historical and botanical glory.

Balboa Park Garden Stewards Are:

  • Over the age of 18
  • Passionate about plants and gardens
  • Able to walk, bend, and kneel to perform basic gardening tasks
  • Interested in learning to identify different plants and weeds
  • Willing to complete up to 8 hours of orientation and training
  • Willing to work at least two multi-hour shifts per month (a few hours weekly is ideal)
  • Able to make a 1-year time commitment
  • Able to remain outdoors during a 2-4-hour shift
  • For some assignments: willing to complete a background check and fingerprinting (at no cost to volunteer)
  • Able to set up/take down a shade structure and chairs (stored in nearby building) and carry other garden tools and supplies with the help of partners

To learn more or to apply, please email Andrea Smith, our Volunteer Project Manager:


Visitors Center volunteers are the ultimate guides to Balboa Park. They provide detailed park information and personal assistance to all guests of the region’s busiest visitors center.

Managed by the Balboa Park Conservancy, the Balboa Park Visitors Center is prominently located at the northwest corner of the House of Hospitality building. Its information desk is continuously staffed by highly knowledgeable volunteers who have access to the most current and comprehensive information about the park’s activities and attractions. Open 9:30am to 4:30pm daily (except major holidays), the Visitors Center offers brochures, maps, audio tours, free guided tours of the park, transportation information, dining advice, and more.

  • Age 16 or older
  • Interested in serving the public
  • Able to communicate clearly with patience for repetition
  • Individuals who enjoy Balboa Park and want to share it with others
  • Able to give consistent, reliable information and service
  • Able to maintain a polite and professional demeanor throughout 3-to-4-hour shifts
  • Able to commit to 2 shifts a month for at least 1 year

To learn more or to apply, please email Andrea Smith, our Volunteer Project Manager:


Interns work directly with our administrative staff to advance our vital mission priorities. You will gain invaluable hands-on work experience, ranging from park conservation to event planning.

Please email for more information about internship opportunities.

Volunteer Partners

Thank you for recognizing our volunteers and all of your support!

Alvarado Institute of Skin Care
Azuki Sushi
Balboa Park Visitors Center Gift Shop
Bandar Restaurant
Body Evolution
Café in the Park
Certified Folder Display Service, Inc.
Cohn Restaurant Group
Cygnet Theatre
Daniel’s Coffee Cart
Eclipse Chocolate Bar & Bistro
Emerald Isle Golf Course
Fiesta de Reyes
Gabrielle Esthetics
Grubby’s Poke & Fish Market
Japanese Friendship Garden
La Jolla Playhouse
Leisure Travel Pass
Living Coast Discovery Center
Mainly Mozart
Marston House
Mission Valley Trader Joe’s
Museum of Making Music

Old Town Trolley Tours
Panama 66
Sammy’s Woodfired Pizza
San Diego Air & Space Museum
San Diego Automotive Museum
San Diego Botanic Garden
San Diego History Center
San Diego Junior Theatre
San Diego Model Railroad Museum
San Diego Museum of Man
San Diego Museum of Photographic Arts
San Diego Natural History Museum
San Diego Repertory Theatre
San Diego Zoo and Safari Park
Scripps Ranch Theatre
SeaWorld San Diego
The Fish Market
The LOT Theaters
The Old Globe
The San Diego Museum of Art
United Nations Association Gift Shop
USS Midway

Still have a question? Please contact us using the form below.


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