Christmas Day volunteering
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December 16, 2008 6:02 pm at 6:02 pm #67874
I am considering not going to Cleveland for Christmas for family oriented crap and instead staying in town and spending the day volunteering. I don’t do enough volunteering and I would like to do something constructive.
Anyone involved in any organizations personally or have any ideas? I have seen some lists of volunteering opportunities but it’s always best to talk to someone who’s actually done it.
I would prefer to do something which is not religion-based, but I’m not that picky for just a one-day thing to start out.
Thank you.December 16, 2008 8:42 pm at 8:42 pm #247241
If you’re just starting at volunteering, more than someone else’s experience, decide what you like, and find volunteer opportunities that meet that. You’re more likely to have fun, and more likely to continue. Decide if your passion is working with kids, working with animals, organizing, gardening (sorry, these are my passions…fill in your own), and then match them up with volunteer opportunities. It’s way better to start that way.
Of course, there’s a lot of unglamorous work that needs to be done, and if you can’t find one that meets your passion, I’m sure you’d be appreciated anywhere you could make it. Closer to home is probably a good way to narrow it down, since the closer to home, the more likely you are to not back out (not saying you, but people in general).
Sorry I can’t recommend opportunities specifically on Christmas Day, but since you have found some, this may help you select. I do the family stuff on Christmas…..December 16, 2008 9:13 pm at 9:13 pm #247242
You could always call Faith Mission. Though I think they get a lot of requests around the holiday. I won’t even touch that rant.
Do you have an neighbors who can’t get home for the holidays, just moved here, maybe some senior citizens? Maybe put together a neighborhood Christmas Dinner?December 16, 2008 9:23 pm at 9:23 pm #247243
lifeontwowheels wrote You could always call Faith Mission. Though I think they get a lot of requests around the holiday. I won’t even touch that rant.
Do you have an neighbors who can’t get home for the holidays, just moved here, maybe some senior citizens? Maybe put together a neighborhood Christmas Dinner?
Also, I’ve googled and can’t find a good explanation of what ETA means (edit: other than estimated time of arrival, which doesn’t make sense as used here). I’ve seen you all use it. What does it stand for?December 16, 2008 9:31 pm at 9:31 pm #247244
Just that it seems charity only exists during the holidays. People seem to think more of their fellow man during this time, but ignore them the rest of the year.
It would really warm my heart to hear of some church, somewhere that cancelled Christmas services and instead rounded up to congregation to go out and do service projects instead. Sorry if it comes across a little bah humbug, 12 years of Catholic Education have made me very cynical towards organized religion.
Edit To Add :DDecember 16, 2008 9:42 pm at 9:42 pm #247245
Ah, cool. Thanks. 2 new additions to my vocabulary today. ETA and trolling. Embarrassing to admit — I’m in technology for heaven’s sake, but I just haven’t been doing this in the past…December 16, 2008 10:39 pm at 10:39 pm #247246
Someone volunteering one time is better then none.
That being said here is a street card that lists all shelters and food places
I hope that works
Friends of the Homeless To get stuff if I don’t do it myself
for some reason people frown upon handing food out on you’re own terms :?
even though I am not a religious person at all and that too was a thought of mine they won’t push it in you’re face there just happy you want to help.December 16, 2008 11:30 pm at 11:30 pm #247247
I don’t know about any secular opportunities, but First Congregational Church always does a huge Xmas meal on Christmas Day as part of a program called “Bethlehem on Broad Street”. There’s also a food box giveaway as part of that same effort through Broad Street UMC, but that takes place early and may be over already. We also do a big clothing and toy giveaway through the UM Free Store, but that’s also over already. Both Broad St & my church http://4allpeople.org are doing Christmas Eve meals.
I’m sure sure shelters and soup kitchens will be busy if the weather is cold. However I agree with lifeontwowheels that inventing your own service opportunity might be the best option. Most programs that use volunteers like people who can give time on a consistent basis, rather than untrained people who are only planning on volunteering once.
It would really warm my heart to hear of some church, somewhere that cancelled Christmas services and instead rounded up to congregation to go out and do service projects instead.
I do think you’re being a bit harsh. Many local churches –even some of the big conservative ones –do a lot of year-round work in the community around issues of poverty and social services.
That said, if I was to guess one organization in Columbus that might be planning to do “statement-volunteering” on Christmas day, it would be the Universalists. Or maybe the secular humanists.
(Actually, one of my good friends is very active with a secular humanist group. I should suggest that to him, he’d probably love the idea.)December 16, 2008 11:47 pm at 11:47 pm #247248
You can always volunteer at the radio station with me. That’s where I’ll probably be. We are not doing anything Christmas related.December 17, 2008 4:44 pm at 4:44 pm #247249
Thanks for the advice. I’m not really wanting to volunteer because it’s Christmas, I actually despise Christmas, but I have vacation time and I feel I should use it constructively. Volunteering also gives me a good excuse to not have to do holiday-themed things. I want to volunteer more later on, possibly a few more times during the two weeks after Christmas also, so finding somewhere that I will enjoy is a good tip.
I think I will call up Franklin County animal shelter since I am close to them and I do love animals.
How do you volunteer at a radio station? What do you do there? That’s not something I’d be into probably, I’m just curious.December 17, 2008 5:03 pm at 5:03 pm #247250
Cyclist wrote You can always volunteer at the radio station with me. That’s where I’ll probably be. We are not doing anything Christmas related.
So I guess you are out for costumes and trick or treating
Seriously, you could just spend the day doing random acts of kindness for your neighbors or anyone—pick up litter, bring newspapers up to peoples doorsteps, if there is snow, shovel more than your walk. Volunteering does not always have to be formal. There are SO many things we can all do that really add up to making our world more fabulous. Do you know people in nursing homes or who are incarcerated or alone? You could do things for them too.December 17, 2008 7:15 pm at 7:15 pm #247251
nexttuesday wrote Thanks for the advice. I’m not really wanting to volunteer because it’s Christmas, I actually despise Christmas, but I have vacation time and I feel I should use it constructively. Volunteering also gives me a good excuse to not have to do holiday-themed things. I want to volunteer more later on, possibly a few more times during the two weeks after Christmas also, so finding somewhere that I will enjoy is a good tip.
I think I will call up Franklin County animal shelter since I am close to them and I do love animals.
How do you volunteer at a radio station? What do you do there? That’s not something I’d be into probably, I’m just curious.
Ah, there’s lots of opportunities at the shelter, but you can’t just walk in. I used to volunteer there, but gave it up because I found it too hard to continue…..um, because it isn’t in my neighborhood. Seriously, it was hard for me to motivate my butt to get in the car and drive out there.
But anyway, they have volunteer orientation, and then you can get involved in the specific activity that interests you. I used to take pictures of animals for the website. There are also dog walkers, cat petters, and if you have experience with other animals, opportunities for rabbits and what not. The time with people is important to keep them socialized and adoptable. However, this is not something you can just start on Christmas. The training is full until January:
The humane society has similar pre-training requirements, and various volunteering opportunities. If you’re interested, sign up for training. The animal shelter has a nice holiday party for volunteers, and you’ll rack up quite a few hours given a whole year to volunteer before the next party. Sorry, it won’t be something you can do this Christmas day, tho…this year anyway. But it would be great to get involved with. With foreclosures, my understanding is animals become more “throw-away” and the need continues to grow…
Best wishes in your pursuits :) Hope the radio station or another option works out for Christmas day this year!December 18, 2008 12:17 am at 12:17 am #247252
As I was about to fall asleep, something in me registered that I had said the Franklin County shleter had all sorts of animals. Guess I saw the “animal shelter” in the message, and confused myself. The Franklin County Shelter is a dog shelter, and only has dogs. I did occasionally volunteer there for a while when I first moved here, too — but I bathed dogs there.
The Humane Society has a lot of different animals (although, at least when I volunteered there, not LOTS of dogs, which is why I did try to fit in the dog shelter, when I could). I took pictures for the website at the HS, of any types of animals, and walked dogs, and snuggled cats.
Anyway, wanted to correct my misstatement. Since I had volunteered at both, I got mixed up. It’s the HS that had the big holiday party.
Gotta get some sleep now…December 18, 2008 4:54 pm at 4:54 pm #247253
Yeah I was a little confused too because I thought Franklin County was the one near me but it’s actually Capital Area Humane Society. So I’m going to try both. I’m at school every day and that’s not far from Franklin county shelter. We’ll see which one works out better, but I’m going to guess CAHS since it’s less than one mile from my house. It’s not a big deal that I can’t do it on Christmas day, I’ll find something else to do that day.December 18, 2008 10:08 pm at 10:08 pm #247254
Cool. I highly recommend CAHS. Sorry for my confusion, although glad to know I’m not the only one that gets them mixed up. I moved here from St. Louis, and we didn’t have a separate dog pound in St. Louis — at least not that I knew of.
My first post was really about CAHS, except for the link. They are great to work with, and have various types of animals, and different types of opportunities, and they are all really nice. And like I said, the holiday party is a lot of fun. I’d imagine they’ll always continue to have them. It’s pot luck for sides. If you have a well behaved dog, you can bring it. They keep track of volunteer hours, and honor those in various brackets. With a whole year from when you start, you’d be in good shape :) You might have to put in some hours dog walking or other basics before more advanced positions, but that’s only fair. Their next training is also in January:
Have a great time with this. It’s really valuable. Thanks :D
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