Volunteer Center: Step up for a veteranPublished 11:13pm Tuesday, March 20, 2012
Spotlight of the week
• You are probably hearing a lot about veteran’s issues in the media and you may be thinking “how can I help?” Volunteers can assist veterans young and old in many ways from providing transportation to medical appointments to doing projects that provide encouragement. Contact the Volunteer Center for ideas for individuals and groups.
• Cass County Council on Aging provides Adult Day Care in its respite facility. Assist in the care of clients who have varying stages of Alzheimer’s or dementia. The facility is open from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Monday through Friday. Pick and choose your schedule. Duties include assisting with crafts, meals and other activities. Patience, compassion and empathy are needed.
If you would rather be on road, the council needs volunteers to drive area seniors to out-of-county medical appointments. Mileage reimbursement is available. Preference is for drivers who have, or are willing to get, a chauffeur’s license.
• Big Brothers Big Sisters of Berrien and Cass invites you to become a community mentor or a lunch buddy. Mentor a 6- to 12-year-old who needs an extra adult in his/her life. Four to 10 hours a month sharing stories, sharing a lunch or playing a game means so much to a child.
• Are you familiar with setting up and taking down websites? The Volunteer Center of Southwest Michigan is looking for a skilled volunteer interested in a short-term assignment to clean up some old content that continues to live on the Web. Need to have this done in April and estimate that it will take two to five hours to complete.
• Do you like playing games, doing arts and crafts and just visiting with seniors? Be an activity assistant at Harbor House Child and Family Services, which offers Harbor House as a place for seniors who are physically impaired, socially isolated, have Alzheimer’s or other dementias to socialize and enjoy peer support in a stimulating and supportive environment that promotes better mental and physical health.
• If you volunteer as a transporter for the Cass County Department of Human Services, you will help Medicaid clients get to their medical appointments. These appointments are usually at locations in nearby counties, but occasionally to further locations. Volunteers are reimbursed at 39.9 cents per mile and for out-of-pocket expenses, such as parking. Volunteers must have an insured vehicle in good working order and they must have less than 7 points on their driving record. Prospective volunteers with criminal histories will be evaluated on an individual basis. Volunteer restrictions on availability will be honored. So you set the boundaries of how often and how far.
• Tri-County Headstart has a classroom waiting for a preschool assistant. You will join them in working with 3- and 4-year-olds in the areas of reading, writing, science, math, gross and fine motor skills, outdoor activities and play.
You can also make items for the classroom at home by cutting out and preparing materials for the teacher.
• Become a valued member of the volunteer staff at Fernwood Botanical Garden in Niles. As a receptionist at Fernwood Botanical Garden in Niles you will assist in greeting visitors and giving directions and operating the cash register.