Fall Volunteer Internships

Location: Berkeley, CA    Position: Part time volunteer internship

Salary: Unpaid

Start Date: ASAP. Applications encouraged by September 1st.Internships start at 3 months in length, with interns working a minimum 20 hours per week, scheduled at their discretion with approval from supervisor.

Our Story

The Story of Stuff Project, a Berkeley-based non-profit organization, works to transform the way we make, use, and throw away Stuff to be more sustainable, healthy and fair. Over the past eight years our trademark, animated movies have garnered more than 50 million online views and motivated viewers to support hundreds of environmental campaigns and projects with their time, energy, and money.

Today, we inspire and encourage the civic engagement of the more than one million members of our global online Community. Our movies and social media content engage millions of viewers each week in a solutions-oriented conversation; our campaigns enlist our members in efforts to protect shared resources and make the economy work for everyone; and our Community Launchpad program offers support to innovative civic leaders in our network.

Core Responsibilities of Project Interns

Interns at the Story of Stuff Project support the work of our entire team—from our campaigners and social media team to our development and administrative staff. Interns will be assigned a core project on which approximately 50% of their time will be focused—typically research, writing or technical projects—with another 25% of their time focused on partnering with their staff lead on shorter-term projects and 25% on all team support tasks. This internship is a great opportunity for students, volunteers, and advocates to gain first hand experience with one of a leading digital communications organization working for environmental and social change.

We are currently recruiting interns for the following tracks:

Social Media & Community Engagement

This year, we’ll reach more than 150 million Facebook newsfeeds with our content, putting our small organization on par with some of the largest environmental organizations in the world. Social Media-focused interns will work with our Community Engagement Manager to help answer our inbox email, assist with translations and subtitles of movies, identify potential social content, assist with faith and educator outreach, and other activities.

Catalog Choice

Support the development of our online social enterprise, Catalog Choice, which provides its two million users with a one-stop platform for opting out of junk mail. Interns will work closely with a small team at the Project, including Natalie Nava, the Product Manager, to assist with customer service, vendor research, marketing, social media posts, and other activities.

Campaigns Development & Research

Our Campaigns team, led by Director Stiv Wilson, is focusing on two main issue tracks this year:  reducing plastic waste and pollution, with a particular focus on microplastics and other marine pollution, and securing safe, public access to water by fighting efforts to privatize public water resources. In addition, our team fields short-term, digital campaigns, typically led by partner organizations and coalitions, on topics ranging from marketing to children to chemical policy reform.

Fall 2016 interns will focus on one of three main projects:  researching the history of investment in public water systems, including Chicago’s innovative fee on sales of bottled water to fund public water infrastructure; curating the latest research and media resources on microfibers, the tiny bits of plastic shed by synthetic fabrics when they’re washed, in preparation for production of a short film on the subject; and supporting the development of an international campaign focused on marine plastic pollution in coordination with Asian, European, and US based partner organizations.

Fund Development

Story of Stuff is proud to have a robust fundraising program that prioritizes individual donors; over half of the Project’s income in 2015 was from individuals. Work with our fundraising team on the foundation, major donor and digital fundraising efforts that make the Project go. In 2016 Story of Stuff has a special emphasis on growing our monthly donor program. Interns will assist with research, writing, A/B tests and data analysis, and donor cultivation, depending on their skill set.

Special Press Project

Story of Stuff has changed the conversation about stuff and helped shift cultural paradigms to value people and the planet over stuff. A big part of the Project’s work has been public education through earned media. Interns will help document organizational history by archiving key press coverage throughout the Project’s seven year history and will help expand the organization’s press list of journalists.

Skill Requirements

We’re looking for bright, motivated, multidisciplinary and fun people with the ability to work well in a collaborative team environment. We need folks who can organize and prioritize assignments and tasks, as well as adapt and react quickly as projects evolve. We value strong communicators, with a proven ability to create high quality writing, graphics and other content. Because of the digital / online nature of the majority of our work, interns must have ease with technology, email and social media. Most importantly, candidates must demonstrate a commitment to environmental sustainability and social equity and the desire to put what they learn to work today and in the future.

Internship Benefits

Interns work side-by-side with our small team in a fast-paced environment. Our charming attic office is conveniently located in downtown Berkeley, CA, just blocks from the top ranked public university in the United States, and we share the space with a number of other innovative digital organizations and leaders. Interns participate fully in the life of the Project and will have access to both our team and the network of peers with whom we regularly collaborate.

How to Apply:

Send an email with “Volunteer Internship”, the internship area you’re interested in, and your name in the subject line to Michael O’Heaney, Executive Director, at Please include:

  • A succinct, personalized cover letter that outlines your interest area, your relevant experience, and explains why you want to join our team. Include any information about your schedule or special requests.
  • Your resume.
  • A work or writing sample that demonstrates your capabilities and connects a particular topic (waste, incinerators, plastic, water, voting rights) to the core themes of The Story of Stuff Project (as outlined in The Story of Solutions).

Back to top of page.