“Inherent in our mission to bring knowledge to bear on the world's great challenges is a commitment to helping those in need.”

—President Reif

Events and Fundraisers

Community Giving at MIT hosts a series of activities throughout the year in partnership with local agencies.

Get involved now by taking part in our current fundraisers and collections:

Secret Santa for Seniors gift collection

Wednesday, November 23 to Wednesday, December 14

The holiday season can be a lonely time for senior citizens who may not have family or friends with whom to celebrate. Together, we want to help the Cambridge police surprise members of our community with holiday gift bags on Christmas eve!

Collection Box locations:

  • Libraries, 14S-216
  • Sloan School of Management, 100 Marketplace
  • Music and Theater Arts, 4-243
  • Global Studies and Languages, Copy Room
  • Nuclear Reactor Laboratory, NW12 Reception Area
  • Research Lab for Electronics, 36-413
  • Institute for Medical Engineering and Science, E25-330
  • Center for International Studies, E40-457
  • Human Resources, NE49-5000
  • Biological Engineering, 56-205
  • Koch Institute, Reception Area
  • 500 Tech Square, 3rd Floor Suite
  • MIT Innovation Initiative, E70-12th Floor
  • Center for Real Estate, 9-343
  • Institute for Data, Systems, and Society, E17, 3rd and 4th Floor Reception Areas
  • Chemical Engineering, 8-328
  • Contact our office to get a box in your department!

Donations needed (new, and unwrapped):

  • Winter clothing (Socks, hats, gloves, sweaters)
  • Festive home items (Blankets, bathrobes, dish towels)
  • Tasty treats (Chocolates, crackers, hard candy)
  • Warm winter drinks (Ground coffee, tea, hot cocoa)
  • Winter care supplies (Lip balm, cough drops)

Last year's Secret Santa for Seniors collection was a huge success, and we hope to make it a success once more! Collection boxes are out now, and we'll be collecting until December 14th. Please contact us if you'd like to host a collection box for your department!

Summer book sale

Tuesday, August 16
Bush Room (Bldg. 10-105) and Memorial Lobby (Bldg. 10)

The Community Services Office set up shop in the Bush Room and Memorial Lobby on August 16, for a one day only flash sale! We cleared out over half of our stock of books in preparation for our upcoming move across campus, and raised $745.20 for the MIT Community Service Fund, the Margaret Fuller Neighborhood House, and the United Way of Mass. Bay and Merrimack Valley! We had a great variety of books from our year-round collection efforts, and it was fantastic to so many interested visitors during the off-season!

Greater Boston Walk to End Alzheimer's

Sunday, Sept. 25th
North Point Park

Community Giving at MIT teamed up with Lincoln Laboratory's Alzheimer's Support Community for this year's Greater Boston Walk to End Alzheimer's! Team Captain Patrick Walsh of CAC led the Cambridge Campus group as we participated.

You can still help us take the first step to a world without Alzheimer's by donating to the Alzheimer's Association and supporting a cause so many of us hold dear. The Alzheimer's Association is one of MIT's currently supported charities, and together, we can help achieve the dream of a world without Alzheimer's disease.

Used book fair

Thursday, November 3; Friday, November 4; and Monday, November 7
Bush Room (Bldg. 10-105) and Memorial Lobby (Bldg. 10)

Our Used Book Fair was a fantastic success once again! We were able to raise $3,800 and bring the community a bunch of new and interesting books to read over the winter! We hope you enjoyed it, and we hope to see you at next year's fair!

CASPAR Winter Collection Drive

Friday, November 4 to Monday, November 21

Items collected during this drive were donated to the CASPAR Emergency Services Center, an MIT community partner that provides services to those affected by substance abuse disorders in Cambridge and Somerville. It was a great pleasure for us to be able to help support the important work that CASPAR does all year round!

Cell phone donation: Ongoing collection

Drop off or send your used cell phone to the Community Services Office, Room E19-711. Proceeds from the donations help support the Boston Area Rape Crisis Center (BARCC), which provides free, comprehensive services to survivors of sexual violence. To date, MIT has donated over 280 cell phones.

Together in Service Collection Drives

Check out some of the departments and groups that participated in the Together in Service Collection Drive!

  • Alumni Association: Cambridge Family and Children's Service - Intensive Foster Care
  • Biological Engineering: The Young People's Project
  • Center for Transportation and Logistics: Cambridge Community Center and the Community Arts Center
  • Communication Production Services: Cambridge Family and Children's Service - Adoption Program
  • Community Services Office: Cambridge Family and Children's Service - Adoption Program
  • Conference Services: Cambridge Family and Children's Service - Adoption Program
  • Copy Technology Centers: Cambridge Family and Children's Service - Adoption Program
  • CSAIL: Science Club for Girls
  • DAPER: On the Rise
  • Economics: Food for Free
  • EHS Office: East End House and Food For Free
  • Bldg. EE19 (Charles Park) MIT Press, MIT Sloan, IBM, Pegasystems, Bright Horizons, and Jones, Lang, LaSalle (JLL): East End House
  • Global Education and Career Development: Cambridge Community Services
  • Global Studies and Languages: East End House
  • Human Resources Department: Salvation Army
  • Information Systems & Technology: Cambridge YMCA
  • Institute for Data, Systems, and Society: Cambridge Community Center and the Community Arts Center
  • Lincoln Laboratory: Food for Free
  • Linguistics and Philosophy: Cambridge Family and Children's Service - Adoption Program
  • MIT Innovation Initiative: Margaret Fuller Neighborhood House
  • MIT Libraries: Cambridge School Volunteers
  • MIT Media Lab: Breakthrough Greater Boston
  • MIT Medical: Cambridge Community Center
  • MIT News Office: CitySprouts
  • MIT Press: East End House and Margaret Fuller Neighborhood House
  • Office of Digital Learning: Margaret Fuller Neighborhood House
  • Office of Sponsored Programs: Cambridge Family and Children's Service - Intensive Foster Care
  • Office of the Provost and Institutional Research Group: CitySprouts
  • Office of the Vice President of Finance: CASPAR
  • Plasma Science and Fusion Center: CASPAR and Cambridge YWCA
  • Political Science: The Young People's Project
  • Residential Life & Dining: Cambridge Community Center
  • Resource Development: Cambridge Family and Children's Service - Intensive Foster Care
  • Sloan School of Management: Margaret Fuller Neighborhood House
  • Sociotechnical Systems Research Center: Cambridge Community Center and Community Art Center

MIT2016 "Together in Service"

Tuesday, April 19

Departments across MIT came together to get involved in the "Together in Service" day in April 2016. The day's activities, part of the MIT2016 celebration of 100 years in Cambridge, will helped guide our students, faculty, and staff to exciting volunteer opportunities in Cambridge and Boston. See our many events below to learn more about the day, which has become a new annual tradition!


Tuesday, April 19

CityDays is a series of one-day volunteer opportunities for all members of the MIT community, run by the Priscilla King Gray Public Service Center. On April 19, CityDays: MIT 2016 mobilized 500 MIT community members to engage with the Cambridge and Greater Boston community by volunteering with neighborhood agencies. CityDays is a great way for living groups, lab partners, athletic teams, and other student groups to strengthen bonds by serving together. They welcome individual volunteers who want to help a local service agency while getting to know new members of the MIT community. Visit the CityDays website to learn more about these recurring volunteer opportunities!

Cambridge Civic Engagement Serve-a-thon

Tuesday, April 19

On April 19, the Graduate Student Council at MIT (GSC) conducted an all-day service event in a hackathon-style format with a focus on cross-Institute collaboration. The Graduate Student Council collected proposals from Cambridge city officials and community members for pressing civic needs that could be addressed (fully or in part) in one day by motivated teams of MIT students. The event was as fun as it was impactful, and city leaders will use the proposals to determine the path forward in improving the everyday experience of living in and around the city of Cambridge!

Community Giving at MIT Collection Drive

Community Giving at MIT held an MIT-wide collection drive in March and April to benefit local nonprofits that provide a spectrum of direct services to our neighbors. Working with over 40 departments, centers, laboratories, employee groups, and student groups, we supported a wide range of charitable organizations throughout our city, and lent a helping hand to our neighbors right here in Cambridge.

MIT Alumni Day of Service

The MIT Alumni Day of Service, organized by the MIT Alumni Association and the MIT Sloan Alumni Club Network in conjunction with the CityDays event, engaged alumni around the world as volunteers in their local communities. The MIT Alumni Association provided festive CityDays event materials in-a-box, as well as marketing support to each interested group of alumni. Together, the broader MIT community continued its commitment to making the world a better place!

TECHnically Art: A Collaborative Mural

In Celebration of MIT's 100 years in Cambridge, the MIT Museum invited the community to take part in creating a collaborative mural of the city by combining creativity, conductivity, and magnetism! MIT Museum staff, local artists, and Chibitronics founder Jie Qi helped residents to create a community art piece at the MIT Museum that will be displayed for visitors to enjoy.