In the late 1990s, the Augustinian Friars began seeking new ways to partner with lay people, in particular young adults. The late Fr. Ray Jackson, OSA, proposed an idea: to create a lay volunteer program in the spirit of St. Augustine. Fr. Joe Mostardi, OSA, the founding director, spent a year researching the feasibility of bringing this idea to fruition and in 2000, the Augustinian Volunteers welcomed their first class of volunteers; 10 recent college graduates who served in San Diego, California and the Bronx, New York.
Since 2000 the Augustinian Volunteers have served domestically in the Bronx, New York; Camden, New Jersey; Chicago, Illinois; Lawrence, Massachusetts; San Diego, California and Ventura, California. Internationally, volunteers have served in Chulucanas, Peru, Durban, South Africa, and San Gimignano, Italy. Currently, the program is led by a committed lay staff, all who have previously served as Augustinian Volunteers.