Voluntary RE:Action

Welcome to our volunteer column sponsored by Grand Rapids Community Foundation. Discover which volunteer position best describes you. Pick a cause and react voluntarily!

Volunteer Opportunity Spotlight: Mandee Rick, American Heart Association Volunteer

“I’ve been volunteering [with the American Heart Association] for a little over five years. I felt like every year, I would learn something that I needed to be thinking about [at the annual Go Red for Women Luncheon]. I really like that [the AHA] raises awareness for survivors and educates everyone on things that they could do to lower their risk factors and identify symptoms.”

The Exercise-Lover

The sixth annual Groundhog Marathon will commence on Friday, February 2 and Saturday, February 3 to celebrate the fact that we have just six more weeks of the winter season. Help motivate runners as a volunteer Course Marshal as they trudge through the snowy streets. Provide an abundance of encouragement, high-fives and, most importantly, directions.

Take Action: Contact Volunteer@GroundhogMarathon.com.

The Dog-Lover

Samaritas in Grand Rapids is looking for an active, dog-friendly volunteer to help residents take their emotional support dogs for brisk winter walks during mornings, afternoons or early evenings throughout the week. Bond with both two-legged and four-legged companions as you get some fresh air.

Take Action: Contact the Samaritas volunteer department at jlaut@samaritas.org.

The Art Lover

Indulge your love for contemporary art by becoming a volunteer docent at the Urban Institute for Contemporary Arts. As a docent, you’ll be able to help visitors connect with and understand the artwork featured in the UICA galleries, including the most recent exhibition Enmeshed.

Take Action: Contact Katherine Williams at katherinew@uica.org.

The Laugh-Lover

Fuel the funny at Gilda’s LaughFest, beginning March 9, by joining the Retail and High Five Team. As a retail volunteer, you’ll weave throughout the crowds at multiple venues handing out merchandise to festival goers while promoting upcoming events and shows.

Take Action: Contact the LaughFest team at (616) 735-HAHA or by emailing volunteer@laughfestgr.org.

The People-Lover

Michigan Blood is looking for dedicated volunteer drivers to help transport people to and from blood drives and help blood donations and products reach those in need. As a driver, you’ll be assigned a Michigan Blood vehicle and gas card to complete weekly runs.

Take Action: Contact Michigan Blood at volunteer@miblood.org.

The Health-Lover

Dpread awareness and encouragement this month at the American Heart Association by becoming a Support Network volunteer. Provide tips and information to heart and stroke patients and their families or caregivers through the AHA online platform or lead an online or offline support group.

Take Action: Contact the AHA at (616) 285-1888.

The Nature-Lover

February is a sweet month for Blandford Nature Center. The organization relies on groups of hard-working volunteers to help collect buckets of maple sap for the Sugarbush Programs. This season, consider becoming a Sugarbush Operator; through this role, you’ll be in charge of cooking down the maple sap into maple syrup inside the Sugar House and explaining the process to visiting tour groups.

Take Action: Contact Katelyn at katelyn@blandfordnaturecenter.org.


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