Volunteer with HI-Washington!HI Washington DC is a non-profit organization that bring together people, places, and cultures to build a more tolerant world. With the help of volunteers, we offer a wide variety of programs for our guests, including walking tours, information services, evenings out and events in the hostel. These activities encourage interaction between travelers and promote intercultural communication and understanding.
HI USA Volunteer Philosophy

All of this fits our mission:

To help all, especially the young, gain a greater understanding of the world and its people through hostelling.

HI-DC VolunteerHI DC volunteers are citizen-ambassadors for Washington, DC, acquainting travelers with the unique experiences and traditions of the capital city, and building cross-cultural understanding and socially aware travel.

Volunteers are needed for flexible shifts morning, afternoon or evening in the following positions:



Volunteer Information Desk Specialist
Information Desk Volunteers act as a Washington, DC Resource for guests by dispensing Washington, DC travel information to hostellers, updating and improving information desk reference materials and answering many frequently asked questions at the desk in the lobby.
Volunteer Tour Guide
Volunteer Tour Guides lead hostellers to special events in and around the Washington, DC area like Arts, History, and Monument tours.

For a complete list of HI USA volunteer opportunities please visit


Contact HI-Washington to volunteerJoin us in making Hostelling International stand out from the rest with our special event and educational programs. To be a part of our exciting team, contact Fatimata Gakou about volunteer opportunities.

Fatimata Gakou
Community Liason, HI-Washington, DC


Our Volunteers

Volunteers represent the backbone of the hostelling movement at Hostelling International-Washington, DC. They are friendly, attentive and knowledgeable. Besides, they donate considerable hours to support our organization and make your stay at HI- Washington, DC entertaining, fun and broadening.

Manny Rockny

Manny’s Persian name is Manouchehr. He is a retired pediatrician and has been volunteering at HI Washington DC since 1987 when our hostel building was dedicated. His experience at HI- Washington, DC has been rewarding as he has many international friends. He enjoys interacting with hostellers.

Andrew Wong

Andrew has lived in the Washington, DC area since 2005, and has volunteered for HI Washington DC as a tour guide since March 2007. In addition to border cities in Canada and Mexico, he has traveled to Hong Kong, Shenzhen, Sydney, Fiji, Belgium, Amsterdam, Paris and London.

He believes he supplements his travel experience with his study of and/or appreciation for literature, history, art and music.

In terms of US travel and experience, he has lived in large cities on both coasts. Andrew studied Architecture for two years in high school, has a bachelor’s degree in Mechanical Engineering, and a MBA in Accounting and Finance.

Mikkela Thompson

Mikkela V. Thompson grew up as the daughter of an American diplomat and a Danish business woman. With her family, she lived in Seoul, Helsinki, Copenhagen, London and Washington, DC.

Mikkela has a B.A. in Art History and an M.A. in International Commerce and Policy. She has worked a variety of jobs including sailing on an international ferry, teaching art history and writing for an international magazine. In her copious free time, Mikkela teaches literacy to adults, tutors English as a second language and writes reviews online. As an artist and writer, Mikkela sees travel as a favorite form of cultural exploration. Her favorite travels are those where local friends have shared their countries (especially dancing and food) with her. She became a volunteer with HI- Washington, DC to promote cross-cultural understanding by sharing her local knowledge with other travelers.

Marc Mehrespand

Marc has lived in Washington, DC since he was a child. His family is of Turkish, Persian and Russian decent. He has stayed at hostels while traveling in Western Europe and the U.S. He is currently focused on exploring South America and learning Spanish. Today, he is a lawyer by day and a tour guide by night.

Marc believes that volunteering at HI Washington DC is one of the best things that he has ever done. He has been a life-long volunteer and was especially drawn to our hostel because of his love of travel. His tours at HI Washington DC all feel like mini-vacations to him.

Jeff Wallyus

Jeff has lived in Washington, DC since 1999 and has volunteered for HI Washington DC as a tour guide since 2005. What he lacks in world travel experience he makes up for in his love of history and enthusiasm for showing the monuments to our visiting guests. Jeff has a Bachelor’s Degree in Computer Science, a second Bachelor’s in Economics with a minor in History, as well as a Master’s Degree in Business Administration. When not volunteering as a tour guide on the weekends, Jeff works as a consultant at the Patent and Trademark Office.

Larry Amman

Larry has a Bachelor’s Degree in History and Political Science. He spent three years in the US Army and was stationed in Vietnam and Germany. This taught him to listen to, understand, and respect the point of view of people from diverse cultural backgrounds. He tries to put this lesson into practice every time he leads a tour at HI Washington DC. He has met people from 71 different countries in the seven years he has volunteered with us. Larry says, “No two experiences are alike thanks to the fine people I have met through HI DC.”