Author Topic: Super cool and awesome community service ideas  (Read 3845 times)

Will

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Super cool and awesome community service ideas
« on: July 08, 2014, 10:31:19 PM »
When my old company got bought out by my new company, one of the things that changed is the paid time-off we get.  Now, 2 of the days that we get paid to take off are to be used in "service to the community."  It seems to be fairly loosely defined and pretty open to anything that is helpful to others (they suggest helping out at your child's school, but I have fur kids only, or cleaning up a park or something).  Knowing how full of good ideas this forum is, I thought I would check to see what super cool and awesome community service suggestions I could get from here.  Obviously we aren't REQUIRED to take them, but why work 2 days at work when I can help out somewhere and still get paid?  I will add now that I am not particularly "handy" so as awesome as I think Habitat for Humanity sounds, I'm not sure how helpful I would be for 2 days.  And for those of you who read my AARP post, you know that I am just on the cusp of "old" at 49.5, so nothing overly strenuous please.  ;)

seattlecyclone

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Re: Super cool and awesome community service ideas
« Reply #1 on: July 08, 2014, 11:57:55 PM »
Don't dismiss Habitat for Humanity too quickly. They typically have enough staff and Americorps members on site to teach and supervise volunteers. So even if you don't have construction skills right now, helping out with Habitat for a few days will help you gain them! And then if your own home needs the type of work you did on a Habitat house, you'll know how to do it yourself!

Will

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Re: Super cool and awesome community service ideas
« Reply #2 on: July 13, 2014, 09:16:09 AM »
My concern with HFH is my 2 day timeframe.  I suppose I could be useful during 2 days, and I would like to volunteer more, I'm just not sure when I would be able to and I would hate to waste their time.

Suit

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Re: Super cool and awesome community service ideas
« Reply #3 on: July 13, 2014, 10:51:34 AM »
Since you like dogs maybe see if the Humane Society could use a couple days of help sometime?

Noodle

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Re: Super cool and awesome community service ideas
« Reply #4 on: July 13, 2014, 11:10:11 AM »
Since you are looking for one-off opportunities as opposed to ongoing projects, how about volunteering at a community festival or event (cultural festival, marathon, holiday parade, etc). They almost always need volunteers, and if it's a Friday-Sunday kind of event, Friday is hard to get volunteers for because lots of people are working. Plus sometimes they have special parking/refreshments for their helpers!

Also, I would keep an eye out for "community clean-up/project" type of days. One challenge with volunteering someplace with a regular volunteer program (like a museum or library) is they usually require background checks and applications and it probably wouldn't be worth it to either side for two days a year.

Will

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Re: Super cool and awesome community service ideas
« Reply #5 on: July 16, 2014, 10:35:36 PM »
Since you are looking for one-off opportunities as opposed to ongoing projects, how about volunteering at a community festival or event (cultural festival, marathon, holiday parade, etc). They almost always need volunteers, and if it's a Friday-Sunday kind of event, Friday is hard to get volunteers for because lots of people are working. Plus sometimes they have special parking/refreshments for their helpers!

Also, I would keep an eye out for "community clean-up/project" type of days. One challenge with volunteering someplace with a regular volunteer program (like a museum or library) is they usually require background checks and applications and it probably wouldn't be worth it to either side for two days a year.

I liked the suggestion about volunteering for a community event.  So I did a little poking around and found 2 that I've "volunteered" for (filled out the online applications).  I ended up going with the American Cancer Society's "Relay For Life- Vancouver" and AIDSwalk Portland.  I've also submitted the paperwork for work and my District Manager has already given me the thumbs up, and Central has responded with a very enthusiastic email.  I've already heard back from the AIDSwalk people, and now am waiting on ACS (but not anticipating any problems).  Woo hoo!

arebelspy

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Re: Super cool and awesome community service ideas
« Reply #6 on: August 12, 2014, 09:46:57 AM »
That sounds neat Will, let us know how it turns out.

Also, that's a really neat initiative by your company.  I like that.
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Will

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Re: Super cool and awesome community service ideas
« Reply #7 on: August 12, 2014, 08:13:44 PM »
The ACS thing went well.  The weather was absolutely perfect.  They weren't really sure what to do all the volunteers they had, so I kind of floated around and helped out in a few different areas.  I helped hang sponsor banners, parking lot duty, assisted at the Survivors' Lunch (they all loved me!), and set up for the Silent Auction.   It was funny because a few of the ACS people asked me "Are you (so-and-so)'s husband?"

Looking forward to AIDSwalk.  I'll be working the prize booth at the end.

arebelspy

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Re: Super cool and awesome community service ideas
« Reply #8 on: August 12, 2014, 09:58:12 PM »
I kind of floated around and helped out in a few different areas.  I helped hang sponsor banners, parking lot duty, assisted at the Survivors' Lunch (they all loved me!), and set up for the Silent Auction.

We are two former teachers who accumulated a bunch of real estate, retired at 29, spent some time traveling the world full time and are now settled with two kids.
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We (rarely) blog at AdventuringAlong.com. Check out our Now page to see what we're up to currently.