On Saturday, November 18, we celebrated Family Volunteer Day. Volunteering as a family teaches children that no matter their age, they can fight for a better community.
In Linn County, our Young Leaders Society held an event at the Human Services Campus. Together, 17 families—24 kids and 27 adults—participated in creating literacy kits for local students. All kits included the book Marty McGuire Has Too Many Pets, supplies for four activities related to the book, and information for adults so they can engage and interact with their child.
“My family wants to make an impact when we invest our time. My children have bookshelves overflowing with books, so it is hard for them to identify with others who do not have the same luxury,” said Whitney Pino, one of the participants who volunteered with her family. “This was a great opportunity to talk with my children about giving back. My eight-year-old, Gianna, even wrote letters to literacy kit recipients encouraging them to fall in love with reading.”
As Vice President of our Young Leaders Society (YLS), Whitney also knows how important literacy is. “As a YLS member, I recognize children in our community are the future. What better way to plan for that future than to make sure every child has tools and resources to be successful?”
In total, family volunteers assembled 42 literacy kits. We will distribute these kits to students in our Volunteers in Proficiency (VIP) program. To learn more about VIP or become a volunteer with the program, visit uweci.org/VIP.
In addition, that same day, our Jones County Volunteer Center, four families, and a few individual volunteers assisted HACAP with their first annual food drive outside of the Anamosa Fareway. They helped collect food, take it to the food bank, and separate it into piles to prepare for Monday morning stocking. The group collected 600 pounds of food and $185 in just four hours.
Thank you to all the families who volunteered with us in Linn and Jones Counties! Even if you missed Family Volunteer Day, you can find volunteer opportunities for you and your family all year round on our Volunteer Now site.