TAFDC Community Service


Community service may be selected as a Pathways to Work activity for some TAFDC clients. It may provide TAFDC clients with on-site experience and skill-building in an organizational setting. Clients may choose to volunteer at a Department-approved community service as part of a Pathways to Work Plan while participating in other education, training or employment activities.


Community Service opportunities may be a good fit for a client who:

A client who will volunteer at an approved community service site must have the maximum number of hours they are allowed to participate based on the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) reviewed. TAFDC clients who are enrolled in community service will verify their monthly volunteer hours to DTA by submitting the Community Service Participation Form signed by a site staff person.

For clients who are subject to work rules and time limits, goal setting and planning must progress towards employment. If a client’s Pathways to Work activity does not meet the required number of hours per week, community service may provide additional hours of engagement.



The FLSA determines the number of community service hours allowed based on the total amount of TAFDC and SNAP benefits received divided by the Massachusetts or federal minimum wage, whichever is higher and then divided by 4.333.  The result is the client’s maximum weekly hour total that they may participate in community service. This number can be found on the Activity Referral page under FLSA hours in the Pathways to Work workflow.



Community service may only be completed at non-profit organizations and subject to approval by the Department. For questions about a volunteer site, email DTA.EmploymentServices@state.ma.us



Where to find in BEACON 

From the Pathways to Work workflow, TAFDC Community Service sites can be found on the Activity Referral page. Page will automatically filter TAO to the client’s assigned local office. 




A Engagement Staff must confirm with the volunteer site that they have capacity to accommodate the client and that the nature of the tasks expected by a volunteer provide a benefit to the participant as well.


A Pathways Activity referral for the community service site will be generated by BEACON. It must be completed by the program and returned to DTA.


Issuing a Pathways Activity Referral

Activity Referral and Enrollment


  Last Update: August 9, 2023