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Volunteer For the Community 

Give the Gift of Your Own Time

Tis the season for giving! If you're looking for alternative forms of giving, you're in luck. Over the past decade, more and more people who have grown tired of the commercial hustle-bustle of the holidays are forgoing the search for that perfect gift for the once-a-year cousin and the last-minute panicked shopping reflexes, and are giving the gift of their own time to help others. You know, as in "good will toward men"? And many more who still participate in the year-end rituals are finding ways to give back to their communities by providing supplies, money or whatever is needed to groups who do the frontline healing work. You can give in someone else's honor, give the honoree a nice notice of your gift, and unless they're heartless curmudgeons, they'll love it. For your convenience, we've compiled a list detailing some local organizations who do a lot of good in the community, how you can get involved, and what they need. Happy giving!

Alexander Youth Network
6220 Thermal Road
PO Box 220632
Charlotte, NC 28211
Web: www.alexanderyouthnetwork.org
Phone: 704-336-8712
Volunteer Services: 704-362-6760 or
volunteer@alexanderyouthnetwork.org
Holiday Volunteer Opps/Donation Needs:
Clothing and shoes, recreational needs (sports equipment, arts & crafts supplies, videos, games, etc.), hygiene items (shampoo, brushes, soap, etc.), school supplies (books, flash cards, etc.).

Alzheimer's Association
Western Carolina Chapter
3800 Shamrock Drive
Charlotte, NC 28215
Web: www.alz-nc.org
Phone: 704-532-5421
Holiday Volunteer Opps/Donation Needs:
Conference room table and chairs, small office table with chairs, artwork, TV/VCR, desktop PC, laptop PC (both Windows 2000 compatible), flatbed scanner, monetary donations and volunteers always welcomed.

Big Brothers/Big Sisters
2424 N. Davidson Street
Suite 110
Charlotte, NC 28205
Web: www.bbbscharlotte.org
Phone: 704-377-3963
Holiday Volunteer Opps/Donation Needs:
Wish list includes: silverware, b/w and color printer, office supplies (file folders, copy paper, etc), cubicle dividers, paper items (towels, tissue, etc.), VCR/DVD player. Also, currently recruiting "bigs," especially volunteer big brothers, as most of the waiting list are boys. There are many ways to get involved as a volunteer in either the school-based or community-based programs.

Catholic Social Services
1123 South Church Street
Charlotte, NC 28203
Web: www.cssnc.org
Phone: 704-370-3228
The Refugee Resettlement Office provides housing, food, social services, English language classes, cultural orientation and employment services to new refugees. They give them an opportunity to start a new life in the United States helping them to become self-sufficient as soon as possible.
Holiday Volunteer Opps/Donation Needs:
Blankets, disposable diapers, car seats, bedding, basic household items, personal hygiene items, toiletries, food gift certificates or monetary donations. The Refugee Resettlement Office has a great need for volunteers to work in the Early Childhood Development Program. Also need English teachers/tutors and case aides fluent in Spanish.

A Child's Place
PO Box 33302
Charlotte, NC 28233
Web: www.achildsplace.org
Phone: 704-343-3790
Volunteer Office: 704-343-3792
A Child's Place works in collaboration with the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools to provide education and support services and to advocate for children and their families who are homeless or at risk of being homeless.
Holiday Volunteer Opportunities/Donation Needs:
Volunteers to be lunch buddies, classroom assistants, snack providers, tutors /mentors. Material needs include clothing, especially khaki or navy pants and white shirts (all sizes), undergarments (all sizes), hygiene items (soap, deodorant, toothbrush, toothpaste, Kleenex, shampoo, comb, brush, black hair care products, hair accessories), school supplies (locks for lockers, sheets/bedspreads, pots, pans, food containers, pillow cases, curtains, towels, washcloths, utensils, pot holders, dishes, dish cloths, toilet paper, paper towels).

Council for Children
601 East 5th Street
Suite 200
Charlotte, NC 28202
Web: www.councilforchildreninc.org
Phone: 704-372-7961
The Council for Children's mission is to protect, promote, and passionately represent children, their needs, and their issues by advocating for them at local and state levels.
Holiday Volunteer Opps/Donation Needs:
Financial Contributions

Crisis Assistance Ministry
500-A Spratt Street
Charlotte, NC 28206
Web: www.crisisassistance.org
Phone: 704-371-3001
For volunteer info, contact: 704-371-3001 x114 or bcampbell@crisisassistance.org
Crisis Assistance does incredible work throughout the year, helping low-income families who are facing a financial emergency by offering them resources and programs to help them move toward self-sufficiency.
Holiday Volunteer Opps/Donation Needs:
Needs list includes financial donations, blankets, x-large men's and women's clothing, towels, sheets, pots/pans, dishes/glasses, pillows, cooking utensils, furniture (especially beds, mattresses, kitchen tables/chairs), major appliances (stoves, refrigerators, washers and dryers), office supplies (pens, paper, folders, etc.), printer cartridges and toner, phones. Volunteers are needed in various ways including conducting interviews with clients, picking up donated items, assisting with client pick-ups, and helping the agency in clerical ways as well as public relations opportunities.

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