Getting involved in your community is a wonderful way to help others, make new friends, learn new skills, and/or put the expertise you already have to work. It also has positive health impacts for the volunteer. See the UnitedHealthcare/VolunteerMatch “Do Good Live Well Study” for more details.
Most local nonprofit agencies, city and county offices, faith communities, political campaigns, and other organizations want and need volunteers. Opportunities can be short-term; for example, participating in an event such as a Fun Run or a golf tournament. They can also be longer term such as helping an organization work with their clients, assisting in the office, helping to get the word out about programs and services, and many other opportunities.
What is it that you feel passionate about? Asking yourself that question may turn up some surprising answers. What talents and abilities do you want to share? Is it helping a child learn to read or do math, alleviating hunger in our community, assisting new immigrants open and manage a bank account, or working in a community garden? These are only a few examples because most opportunities are only limited by our imagination!
How do you find opportunities? A good place to start is with your own friends. Chances are you have some that volunteer now, and they are in a good position to tell you about places and opportunities. The United Way (www.unitedwaydenton.org), RSVP, the Retired and Senior Volunteer Program (www.rsvpserves.org), and individual organizations list current volunteer opportunities. Finally, there are online sites such as www.volunteermatch.org where you can query by location or types of causes.
Consider using your knowledge, experience, and passion to make our community a better place for all people. Whether you are still in the workplace, beginning to phase out, or are already retired you have tremendous gifts and talents to share. With the right organization, the right task, at the right time, volunteering can be a wonderful way to meet new people, improve your emotional and physical health, expand your knowledge, and add meaning to your life by making a contribution.
United Way of Denton County has been mobilizing resources to advance the common good in our community since 1951. They are local and autonomous, a 501(c)3 not-for-profit (community based) organization with a governing board of directors.
The extensive use of volunteers allows United Way of Denton County to maintain a small staff and low overhead. The following link lists volunteer opportunities in within the United Way and throughout our community.
The Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) program provides free tax preparation assistance for low-to-moderate income individuals and families in our community. By helping people claim all of the tax credits for which they are eligible, volunteers can give many individuals and families in our community a chance to build a financial future.
Last tax season, volunteers helped put over half a million dollars back into the pockets of our community. We need you for the 2013 season! With your help, we’re excited to serve even more individuals and families this coming year.
Serve Denton is a local 501(c)3 not-for-profit (community based) organization with a governing board of directors that exists to help nonprofits fulfill their mission in advancing the common good of Denton County. We believe co-location and collaboration among nonprofits can better meet the needs of our communities in a big way and are working to establish a nonprofit center near downtown Denton.
The center will also help improve cooperation among nonprofits, show people in our community where they can get involved, expand our community resources, and create opportunities for many people in need to become self-sufficient when they find the help they need all in one place.
To help nonprofits in our community, we have a listing of volunteer opportunities that we regularly update.
Hope for North Texas is the local outreach arm of Sower of Seeds (S.O.S.) International. Over the past 20 years of working internationally, S.O.S. International has seen the impact of individuals as they find ways to be part of the solution for people around them. Through the establishing of Hope for North Texas, their desire is to create meaningful opportunities here, where church members can find areas to plug into and use their gifts and their passions to connect with local needs.
Their desire is to provide tools for churches, to offer solutions to see congregations mobilized to reach their communities, and to engage them in missions in a way that is tangible and full of impact. They want to unite organizations, churches, and individuals with a joint cause of reaching out to the poor and marginalized and equipping them with a medium and means to continue being effective.
The Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) program educates people about disaster preparedness for hazards that may impact Denton County and trains them in basic disaster response skills, such as fire safety, light search and rescue, team organization, and disaster medical operations. Using the training learned in the classroom and during exercises, CERT members can assist others in their neighborhood or workplace following an event when professional responders are not immediately available to help. CERT members are also encouraged to support emergency response agencies by taking a more active role in emergency preparedness projects in their community. Click here for more information on CERT.
To learn more about the Denton County CERT program, including meeting and training schedules, contact Brenda Gormley at Brenda.Gormley@dentoncounty.com or call 940-349-2855.
Healthy Denton provides opportunities for people to get involved who are interested in coaching others on wellness. If this idea interests you, please contact Healthy Denton at the following link: http://www.healthydenton.org/get-involved/