Family Room

Summer’s here. Time to volunteer

When you’ve just been sprung from school, summer seems gigantic, endless, brimming with freedom and possibility — or, perhaps, just brimming with endlessness.

Many local nonprofit agencies and jurisdictions offer summer outings for young people who want to put some free time to good use. Plenty of opportunities are regular enough to keep you feeling like you matter — and maybe like you’re amassing good stuff for a future job or college application — but occasional enough not to infringe on your sacred right to sleep past lunchtime most days of the week.

The only rub for young people is, if you’re between 14 and 17 years old, you’ll almost always need a parent or guardian’s signed permission to proceed. If you’re younger than 14, you almost certainly need the parent with you. Other than that, all you need is the ability to take some initiative and make some arrangements ahead of time: