The Rapidian

Holiday Volunteer Events!

Don't be a Scrooge - get into the holiday spirit with a variety of fun, festive volunteer opportunities! There's something for everyone.
Spectrum Health coordinated a Winter Supply Drive that helped children in 15 Grand Rapids Public Schools!

Spectrum Health coordinated a Winter Supply Drive that helped children in 15 Grand Rapids Public Schools! /Newton Public Library

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Giving Back this Holiday Season

Want to give back, but feel like your schedule's just a little too crazy this time of year? Consider integrating one of these ideas into the flurry.

 

Adopt a Family with Arbor Circle or YWCA! You can brighten the holiday of a family in need by providing food, clothing or gifts! (This is also a fun alternative for families interested in developing a new tradition to replace buying the latest chia pet or blinky tie for one another.)

Contact Margaret Resner at 616-456- 6571 ext. 1324 to help a family through Arbor Circle.

Contact Jennifer Timmer at 616-451-2744 to help a family through YWCA West Central Michigan.

Contact Jessica Gladden at 616-206-4477 to help a family through Thrive: A Refugee Support Program.

 

Organize a Winter Supply Drive! Help children stay warm by organizing a winter supply drive with your family, group, church, or company. Heart of West Michigan United Way can distribute supplies to the nurses of Grand Rapids Public Schools so that they get to the children in need of them. You can also donate supplies to local Outreach Ministries or organizations such as In the Image.

 

Organize an Essential Needs Drive! Click here for some tips!

 

Did you round up your supplies, and now you're not sure what to do with them? Call 2-1-1! 1 (800) 887-1107 ... they can help direct you to an agency that can use them.

@Teresa Z helps organize the winter supplies that Spectrum Health delivered!

@Teresa Z helps organize the winter supplies that Spectrum Health delivered! /Misti Stanton, United Way Schools of Hope

There's nothing quite like volunteering to get you into the holiday spirit. And there's nothing like the holidays to bring you lots of fun ways to volunteer!

Click here to read about all of them!

There's something for everyone:

For the History Buff...Take part in a Pioneer Homestead Holiday - connecting kids and families with fun and educational activites, horse-drawn wagon rides, cookies and cocoa, too! Read more.

For the Creative Type... Share your musical talents or inspiring poetry (or yummy desserts!) during a night of holiday feasting and merriment with families affected by addiction. Read more.

For the Night Owl...Help out for a couple hours during the Salvation Army's 32-hour marathon bell-ringing event downtown! Read more.

For the Go-Getter...Help out in the flurry of distributing Toys for Tots, all over Kent County! Read more - Rockford, Grand Rapids.

Don't forget, there are so many ways to get involved with hundreds of different non-profits this holiday season, and beyond. You can celebrate with seniors, make an impact in the life of school children, even help refugees new to the country understand some of the holiday customs we take for granted.

Are you volunteering during the holidays? If you have a great experience, we'd love to hear about it! Just email your reflections or your pictures (or even video!) to Teresa Zbiciak and we'll share them on the website and social media. You might also think about writing something for the Rapidian... just include HWMUW in the section for tags, and we'll be sure to share it!

Disclosure: The goal of the Volunteer Center is to generate resources to build a stronger community and improve lives. The Volunteer Center offers a wide array of programs and opportunities that make it easy for you to volunteer. We connect individuals, students, families and employers with organizations and programs that match their talents and interests.

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