United Way is working to advance the common good by focusing on education, income, and health -- the building blocks for a good life. But we can't do it alone. We need the heads, hands, and hearts of committed people like you to help us tackle the problems facing our communites. Each one of us has special talents - things we can do to help. Put your talents to work for your community. Volunteer. Give an hour. Give a Saturday. Give your best. And know that when we reach out a hand to one, we influence the condition of all. Whether it’s reading to children, leading financial literacy classes for hard-working families, or delivering meals to homebound seniors, there are hundreds of volunteer opportunities available every day.
GIVE THE GIFT OF YOU!
Benefits of Volunteering
Whether it is important to you to solve a community problem, to advance a worthy cause, or to develop as a person, volunteering offers many benefits in appreciation for the gift of your time and expertise. Volunteering can help you:
Make important networking contacts
Learn or develop skills
Teach your skills to others
Enhance your résumé
Gain work experience
Build self-esteem and self-confidence
Improve your health
Meet new people
Feel needed and valued
Express gratitude for help you may have received in the past from an organization
Communicate to others that you are ambitious, enthusiastic, and care about the community
Make a difference in someone’s life
Looking for Ideas on How You Can Show You CARE?
Then, you have come to the right place! It's about showing others you CARE, regardless of how you do it or how long it takes. Everyone is familiar with the terms "Random of Acts of Kindness" and "Paying it Forward." Why not take a great idea further?
Below are some ideas that you, your family, your children and/or friends can do to make a difference in someone's life. We'd love to hear what you did so please e-mail us with your story. Feel free to send us a digital photo of your family or group in action. Then we can share how you LIVE UNITED and give others inspiration to take on a CARING opportunity.
Just think, if each person in SumnerCounty completed at least one CARING activity, what a difference it could make for everyone! It's really that simple...
· Clean out those closets and donate clothing, toys, and other household good you no longer use to one of our United Way partner agencies. There are several agencies who will gladly accept your items for resale in their stores or to aid someone in need. Your closet will feel better and so will you!
· Gather up those extra items in the pantry (no expired food, please!) or buy a few extra cans or boxes of non-perishable food or paper goods (paper towels, toilet paper) when you visit the grocery store and deliver it to one of our local food bank.
· Send a handwritten thank you note to someone who has made a difference in your r your family's life. It could be your child's teacher, the school principal, emergency personnel (police, fire, EMTs), a coach, the school crossing guard, a Sunday School teacher, or child care worker. Appreciation is something we all need for our well-being.
· Offer to watch a friend or neighbor's child for an hour or two so they can run an errand or just a have a few moments to themselves. Everyone deserves a break.
· Invite an elderly neighbor or someone you know who lives alone in your neighborhood over for dinner or dessert - or both.
· Assemble toiletry kits of sample-sized products (shampoo/conditioner, toothpaste, toothbrush, soap, lotion, deodorant) for our local domestic violence shelter.
· Offer to cut the neighbor's grass when you cut yours.
· Offer to clean out the gutters at an elderly neighbor's house.
· Send letters and/or care packages to one of our troops serving overseas. While some receive a great deal of mail, others do not. A good site to start with is www.anysoldier.com. Go to that site for details on what you can do to brighten a hero or heroine's day.
· If you have children, ask them to color or draw a picture and take it to someone who could use a bright spot in their day. It's never too early to teach children the importance of helping and caring for others.
· Contact your child's teacher(s) and ask what school supplies they need to restock their supply closet. Many teachers buy school supplies for the students in the class out of their own pocket.
· Deliver some flowers to someone who's been under the weather or going through a difficult time. It doesn't matter if they are from the florist, your backyard, or the grocery store. It's the thought that will make the difference.
· If you visit a local park, pick up the trash near where you are enjoying your time.
· Call someone you haven't talked to in a while and let them know you are thinking of them. Don't e-mail them or send them a message on Facebook; pick up the phone and TALK!
· Offer to let the person standing behind you in the checkout line go ahead of you. It doesn't sound like much, but they will probably think about doing it the next time they are in a store.
· If your children have toys or books they no longer play with, have them gather the items up and deliver them to one of our partner agencies that provide child care.
· Put a thank you note in the mail box for your mail carrier. Let them know you appreciate their dedication.
· Surprise your trash collectors: take a plate of cookies or some cold drinks out when they stop by your house.