Want to do some good this summer? Here’s a roundup of area volunteer opportunities with options for the whole family
With school out soon, local families looking for fun and rewarding ways to pass the summer hours have countless volunteer opportunities right here in our community. You can help prepare meals for the hungry, clean up a river, read to kids, play sports with those with special needs, or take care of sweet-natured dogs and cats looking for a home, among many other activities. Sometimes, all a local nonprofit organization needs is a few hours of your time. But there are also options to get more heavily involved, such as advocating for neglected children. Here are some of the ways to get your summer of service started.
Want to help someone who is struggling to make ends meet but is also willing to do the hard work it will take to turn things around?
Christian HELP in Casselberry has helped thousands of people find meaningful employment. The organization also provides a food pantry, Christmas presents for kids, and other services. The faith-based program pairs its clients with care workers to help transform their lives. Clients range from the homeless to highly accomplished executives.
The agency needs volunteers for a variety of tasks, either on a regular basis or just occasionally throughout the year.
Contact Brittany@ChristianHelp.org to learn more about serving in any of the following areas: administrative support, care management, events and hospitality, food pantry, jail ministry, job fairs, and résumé writing.
You can also call 407-834-4022 or go to ChristianHelp.org.
Team Up with Seminole County Government
The official Seminole County government website lists a number of ways to volunteer and have a good time, with something for everyone and many family-friendly activities.
If you are environmentally conscious, you can adopt a park or help clean up, maintain, and enhance the parks, trails, and natural lands that make Seminole County so special. Similar adoption programs are available for rivers and roads, too.
You can also help out at your local library in a number of ways, from mending books to taking part in children’s story programs and crafts.
Those looking for a more intense but rewarding program can get involved in Guardian ad Litem, advocating for abused or neglected kids who are working their way through court proceedings.
And animal lovers have several volunteer options, be it at the county’s Animal Services department or the Central Florida Zoo.
To check out all the summertime service options, go to SeminoleCountyFL.gov/about-us/volunteering.stml.
Feeding Children Everywhere
Here is a volunteer opportunity that is perfect for couples or families, although anyone can take part.
At Feeding Children Everywhere in Longwood, the goal is to fight childhood hunger throughout the world. You can be a part of that mission and have a great time as well. The nonprofit agency provides the ingredients and background music – the job of the volunteers is to put those ingredients together in a fun-filled assembly line to make healthy meal packages for hungry kids. Volunteers can even designate where those packages end up.
A special volunteer opportunity is coming up this summer: The Love for South Sudan Hunger Project will help families in that war- and famine-plagued African nation. The goal is to prepare 300,000 meals, with volunteers in Longwood doing their part on July 14 and 15.
For information about that event and other volunteer opportunities at Feeding Children Everywhere, call 888-891-6447 or email Volunteer@FeedingChildrenEverywhere.com.
Buddy Ball and More
Here is a chance to enjoy the outdoors and help kids with physical and developmental disabilities connect to our national pastime.
Buddy Ball, a division of Altamonte Springs Babe Ruth baseball, needs volunteers to give one-on-one help to kids at a special handicap-accessible field at Eastmonte Park in Altamonte Springs. Volunteers, who often include high-school athletes, team up with a child to provide mentoring and help them hit, field, throw, and move around the bases during Buddy Ball games.
Volunteers needed include coaches, instructors, office administrators, and team moms.
Buddy Ball is just one of many volunteer opportunities to help those with disabilities in Altamonte. The City’s Recreation department, in partnership with the Advisory Board for the Disabled, could use your help with a variety of activities designed for those with special needs.
Volunteers can include clubhouse counselors, dance program instructors (no experience necessary), bowling buddies, office and clerical workers, and special events volunteers and fundraisers.
For more information about Buddy Ball and other programs, contact Terri Vitale at 407-571-8814 or TVitale@Altamonte.org.
Pet Rescue by Judy
If you love animals and enjoy lending a hand, you can’t go wrong with Pet Rescue by Judy. The Sanford-based organization has been in existence for more than 30 years, dedicated to the rescue of abandoned and distressed cats and dogs.
Pet Rescue by Judy nurses animals back to health and looks for foster homes while also educating the public about the proper care of animals and the importance of spaying and neutering.
Even providing one week of foster care can make a big difference in an animal’s life. And of course, there are plenty of opportunities to go a step further and adopt a little friend into your family.
Pet Rescue by Judy also needs help with walking, feeding, cleaning, paperwork, and photography.
Group volunteering is also an option, which is great for families, companies, and churches. Pet Rescue by Judy asks for a maximum of 15 volunteers for a four-hour shift. Volunteers must be at least 16 years old.
For more details, call 407-302-4497 or visit PetRescueByJudy.com.
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