It is that time of year again! The leaves are falling and the weather is changing. Everyone is looking forward to the holiday season. During this joyous time, we must also remember that it is a season of giving and being kind to others. It is also the time for high school seniors to fill their resumes with more community service hours.
The Humane Society offers sheltering and adoptive services for all kinds of animals. Volunteering at the Humane Society gives students and families the chance to have hands on experience and provide care for animals in need of compassion. To volunteer, students must be at least 16 years of age. There is a $15 fee for each volunteer, which covers the volunteer t-shirt, basic training and volunteering supplies. There is a wide range of options, which include training and giving quality time to adoptable dogs, making sure kennels and other areas are well-kept, walking adult dogs, spending quality time with cats and cleaning cages. Before volunteering, volunteers must attend an information session, complete training and an educational course on the animals and shadow an experienced staff member.
Keep Indianapolis Beautiful:
Keep Indianapolis Beautiful is an organization created to build communities and help improve the quality of public places in the city. Volunteers learn more about the community and gain hands-on experiences with nature, while also helping to keep the city safe and clean. Volunteers can choose to help clean the streets, plant trees in public places or turn empty spaces into public parks. In order to volunteer, one must create a profile on the Keep Indianapolis Beautiful website and register to work.
Art with a Heart:
Art with a Heart is an organization that provides a variety of art programs for at-risk youth. Many of the children associated with the program come from difficult backgrounds and typically lack basic things such as food and money. Volunteers work directly with the students in a positive environment and help them find their potential, whether it is in the arts or elsewhere. Volunteers can choose to assist in classrooms during school days, after school programs or summer camps. The organization says, “No art experience necessary; bring your heart for kids and your smiling face and we will train you on everything else!”
Sonny Day is known for providing food, toiletries and clothing to Warren Township families in need. The pantry occupies the building that used to be Heather Hills Elementary. There are many opportunities for students and parents alike to volunteer and help Sonny Day run efficiently. Students can organize clothing and food items or help with packaging donations. This is a way to make a difference in the Warren Township community. Sonny Day partners with student council to get volunteers when they are in need of help. Those interested in volunteering at Sonny Day can speak with a student council adviser: Amy Moeller, Tracey Bush and Tim Kegley or officer: Ramatou Soumare, Andrew Montgomery, Chelsi Waggoner, Lilian Duong, Staci Gibson, Laniah Ray-Reed, Charles Peterson and Peter Drummond.
Gleaners is a food bank that partners with approximately250 organizations in 21 counties in Indiana. There are variousopportunities to volunteer throughout the year. Volunteers canwork in the distribution center sorting and packaging donationsin the warehouse as well as putting together backpacks for at riskyouth. Volunteers can also work in the Cynthia H. HubertCommunity Cupboard, greeting customers and helping loaditems in customers’ vehicles. Gleaners provides a variety ofchoices including packaging, helping seniors shop and helpingstaff members enter data into the database. Gleaners providesa great opportunity to be involved in the community and gainexperience in interacting with people. In order to volunteer,a volunteer release form must be filled out and turned in theday the student chooses to volunteer.
DoSomething.org is a resource for anyone interested in participating in community service and doing things on their own. DoSomething offers an extensive selection of activities and service projects that support a wide variety of causes. Causes include: animals, bullying, environment, discrimination, education, health, homelessness, disasters and poverty. Students can do things such as host a jean collecting drive or create thank you cards for veterans. When a project is completed, students can post pictures and qualify for scholarships for themselves or for their schools.