There are so many ways to give back to your community. Once you overcome the inertia, I think the hardest part is figuring out how to spend your volunteer time. Here are some of the organiztions for which I volunteer. It is so rewarding and makes such a difference in so many lives.
1) For the past 30 years, Middleton Outreach Ministry, 7432 Hubbard Avenue, Middleton Wisconsin 53562 led a community-wide effort to improve the quality of life and provide basic needs for Those neighbors in need.
Through business partners, area schools, affiliated churches, service clubs, and numerous individuals, MOM helps those who need us most by providing:Food, Clothing, Housing Assistance, Emergency Funds and Services for Seniors.
For additional ongoing ways to serve your community in Middleton visit their website http://www.mompop.org/ or call 608-836-7338 or email firstname.lastname@example.org. It's that simple and you can do just a little or enlist a gorup to tackle a bigger project.
This fall I participated in MOM's fall cleanup including leaf raking and outside yard maintenance, plus window washing for elderly people who cannot manage it all themselves. I joined a group of folks from TDS on Greenway Blvd in Middleton to help out a couple of elegant ladies with their yards and also with window washing.
Paul and I with our pile of sticks. I also trimmed many branches of a weeping willow and raked and swept the driveway to make it free of leaves. My arms were sore from muscles I rarely use but this is so satisfying and fulfills a great need in the community. I wish we had taken a Before Picture! What a contrast from when we were finished. The homeowner was just the sweetest smiley-est lady who directed and cheerleaded our efforts.
2) The Salvation Army of Dane Countyincludes outreach locations (Service Extensions) in Monona, Stoughton, Verona and Fitchburg. So much important work is done through the Salvation Army - they serve over 275,000 meals per year. Another statistic from their website is the sobbering statistic that the average age of a homeless person in Dane County is 9. Suprisingly shocking statistic, wouldn't you say?
The Stark Realtors Middleton Office where I work, adopted a Kettle Nov 27 and were bell ringing throughout the day for the Salvation Army. There is good reason why you see the kettles all around towns big and small. We were at the Copps food Market in Middleton and it was cold that day but we got to stand inside near some shopping carts and stay just a little warmer than outside positioning would have been. People donated $20, $10, $5 and lots of pocket change and dollar bills. It all adds up!
3) Wisconsin Public Television is a service of the WI Educational Communications Board and the University of WI extension. 2000 volunteers have put in nearly 17,000 hours annually. I have been a behind the scenes Display Designer for the annual auction and have worked the phone banks for other fun raisers.
The display designer sets up items artisctically for the TV cameras to scan live and for the auctioneers to feature. It is fast paced and fun and you can see your work on the air. You can call 608.265.4436 or email email@example.com. for this job or another one which strikes your fancy. The 2011 Auction is being held June 1 - 5, so there is plenty of time to set up timeslots for you and your organization or group.
For much more information and great pictures visit the WPT website. or contact them at 265-4436
4) Habitat for Humanityis such a rewarding volunteer opportunity. My Stark Middleton office has particiapted and I am getting us all signed up again this winter. I previously posted about one of our experiences.