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7 local volunteer opportunities your whole family can do!

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Since becoming a mom, I have tried to instill within my children the importance of volunteering in the community.

But here’s the problem: Most community organizations have a minimum age requirement for volunteering and young children don’t usually make the cut.

That’s why I’m thrilled that Mile High Mamas is teaming up with Volunteers of America to regularly post volunteer opportunities the entire family can enjoy together.

Why do it? Not only does it feel great to help others but it strengthens your family bond, creatives a sense of responsibility in children, teaches tolerance by exposing kids to diversity and most importantly, it is FUN!

The holidays are right around the corner and there are many people in our community who would be grateful for your help this season. Check out the list of volunteer opportunities to find out how to get involved:

The 23rd Annual Basket of Joy

Your entire family can bring holiday to senior citizens by delivering fruit and chocolate baskets and homemade cards. The event is on Saturday, December 10th; 9-11 a.m. and baskets will be picked up from the Denver Mattress Factory Warehouse. Volunteers will be assigned a route (first come, first served) in a neighborhood in the Metro Denver area. If you would like to volunteer, please sign up online or go to their Web site, www.voacolorado.org.


Deliver Thanksgiving Day Meals on Wheels

Thursday, November 24th between 9 a.m. – 12 p.m. (Various locations across Denver)

100 volunteers are needed to assist the MOW program by delivering a hot nutritious meal to a homebound senior on Thanksgiving Day. Individuals, groups or families are welcome. This usually takes about 1-2 hours to complete. Contact Bradley Gulley at 303-297-0408 X 13113 to volunteer.

Adopt-a-Family Project

Working with Volunteers of America’s Transitional Living Program, Transformational Housing and Head Start Program, individuals or groups are needed to “adopt-a-family” for the holidays by supplying the family with holiday gifts. Note: There will be no direct client contact due to confidentiality. A profile of the family is provided for gift selections. Please Contact: The Holiday Coordinator at 303-297-0408 or holiday@voacolorado.org

Book Wrapping Party

When: The first 2 weeks in December

Volunteers are needed to help wrap over 300 books! These Scholastic Books will be given as presents over the holiday season to low-income families, children and teens. Individuals, groups or families are welcome. Contact Rachel Dolgin at 303-297-0408 ext: 13310 to volunteer.

Christmas Adopt a Family – Gift drop off and pick up

Adopt a Family Donors will drop off gifts on Thursday, December 15 from 7 a.m. – noon and Friday, December 16 from 1-6 p.m. at the Volunteers of America Mission located at 2877 Lawrence Street. Volunteers are needed to assist in collection, tagging and organizing gifts on both days. Please contact: Erika Nelson-Conrad at 303-297-0408 ext: 13309 to volunteer.

Adopt a Family Recipients will pick up the gifts on Tuesday, December 20 from 9 a.m.-6 p.m. and Wednesday, December 21 from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. at the Volunteers of America Mission located at 2877 Lawrence Street. Volunteers are needed to assist in greeting and processing the recipients, and distributing the gifts. Please contact: Erika Nelson-Conrad at 303-297-0408 ext: 13309 to volunteer.

Deliver Christmas Eve or Christmas Day Meals on Wheels

Saturday, December 24 or Sunday, December 25 between 9:00am – Noon (Various locations across Denver)

100 volunteers are needed to assist the Meals on Wheels program by delivering a hot nutritious meal to a homebound individual on Christmas. Individuals, groups or families are welcome. This usually takes about 1-2 hours to complete. Contact Bradley Gulley at 303-297-0408 X 13113 to volunteer.

Service-Learning At Home

Can’t make it to this month’s Family Volunteer Project but would still like to help out? There are plenty of things you can do on your own time to support others. Here is this month’s project idea:

Winter Wear Share

This winter your family can keep families and children in your community warm by sharing (actually giving away!) winter wear that is in great condition but just doesn’t fit your family any more. New and gently used winter coats, fleeces, winter boots, hats and mittens are always in demand. New items, especially hats and mittens are always appreciated. Donated items can be dropped off at The VOA Misson at 2877 Lawrence Street, Denver, to benefit low-income and homeless individuals and families.

New or gently used materials needed:
Coats
Jackets
Fleeces
Sweaters
Boots
Scarves
Hats
Mittens

Steps Involved:
*Connect with an agency (like The Volunteers of America Misson) that can use your winter wear, such as homeless shelters, low-income pediatric clinics, youth shelters, transition homes, and women’s and children’s shelters.

*Ask the agency what it will accept. Will they take gently used coats, boots, fleeces, sweaters, hats and mittens? Are there certain items that must be new?

*Search your closets. Wash all items. Do not give coats or any other items with broken zippers, rips or stains.

*Think about doing a neighborhood drive or teaming up with family friends to collect items. Your family can make flyers (list the receiving agency) and designate a pick up date. List the items that you need and that all must be clean and in great condition. No rips, stains or broken zippers. You can attach the flyer to a large plastic bag. Neighbors can deliver the items to you or if appropriate, you can ask them to leave the items wrapped securely in a plastic bag and labeled “Winter Wear Share” outside their door.

*Deliver your items to the agency.

Amber Johnson
Author: Amber Johnson

Amber is the founder and editor of Mile High Mamas. She is a passionate community builder and loves the outdoors. She has two awesome teens and is happily married to a man obsessed with growing The Great Pumpkin.

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Comments
  • comment avatar candace November 14, 2011

    these are great. i’ve been frustrated with the lack of resources for young kids to help with volunteering. i understand why businesses do it because little kids can be a distraction but how are they going to learn the importance if we don’t start them young?

  • comment avatar Amber's Crazy Bloggin' Canuck November 14, 2011

    Great point, Candace! I feel the same way about teaching my kids to cook. Sure, it’s a pain to be in the kitchen with them right now but if I wait until they are “old enough” to learn, they won’t want to do it. That’s what happened with me and so my kids have been cooking with me since they were toddlers. Already at 5 and 7, they’re great little cooks!

    The same could be said about starting young with community service.

  • comment avatar Catherine November 14, 2011

    GREAT post!!! I’m with Candace…I have had a hard time finding things for young kids to do and this is the time they should really start appreciating what they have and doing things to help others. It should start early! Can’t wait to hear about more opporunties throughout the year! Thanks Amber!

  • comment avatar Lisa Vratny-Smith November 14, 2011

    Thanks so much, Amber. I’ve been in the same boat. Love these opportunities and look forward to more!

  • comment avatar Heather Ruch November 30, 2011

    Thanks for the ideas! My daughter and I signed up to help out Meals On Wheels for a day! It is challenging to find a volunteer activity for the younger kids. I’m looking forward to doing this with her. Who knows, maybe it will turn out to be a regular thing for us.

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  • comment avatar Codie October 28, 2013

    This is a great story! I have been looking for opportunities to do with my kids. Another place that is great is the Denver Rescue Mission. They have a holiday card decorating event coming up that all kids can do as well.
    https://www.denverrescuemission.org/

    Codie

  • comment avatar Sarah F. October 9, 2014

    I’m so thrilled with this post! My daughter is 6 years old and a very smart & bright little girl. I’ve been a single Mom her entire life and I want to teach her the benefits of giving back to the community and how it changes us to be better people as a whole. Also to have the courage that life may throw at us hard choices yet we will always have hope together. Great post!!! Love it!!

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