Make A Difference In Your Community By Becoming Involved


October 24th Marks the 15th Annual VolunteerFest: Sign Up Now to Volunteer!

Volunteer Fairfax is now accepting volunteer registrations for its 15th annual VolunteerFest®, to be held on Saturday, October 24, 2009. Hundreds of volunteers are needed at area nonprofits, schools and parks to complete 35 projects on this county-wide day of service. Individuals, families, corporations and civic groups are encouraged to participate.

Throughout the Braddock District, more than 95 volunteers are needed at five different sites/agencies, which are listed on the chart below, along with a description of the work being performed. To sign up for a project or for more information, please contact Christine Coffey at ccoffey@volunteerfairfax.org or 703-246-3703 by Thursday, October 22. For a listing of volunteer projects in other areas of Fairfax County, visit www.volunteerfairfax.org and click on VolunteerFest® 2009 in the dark blue bar on the left hand side of the homepage.

 Over the past 14 years, 16,754 volunteers have donated 54,708 volunteer hours through 829 different VolunteerFest® projects. When calculated at the value of today’s volunteer hour, that is the equivalent of a $1,107,837.20 donation to area nonprofits. Volunteers return year after year because of the impact they make on the community.

“This year, our local nonprofits have seen a spike of nearly 40 percent in requests for support," says Jeanne Sanders, executive director of Volunteer Fairfax. “You might be surprised to learn your neighbor has reached out for this type of help. Volunteer Fairfax produces VolunteerFest® to help nonprofits accomplish tasks they might not have the resources for during a regular business day."

Volunteer Fairfax is building a better community through service. As a respected leader of community volunteerism for more than 34 years, Volunteer Fairfax connects individuals, youth, seniors, families and corporations to volunteer opportunities in the Fairfax County area.

Brentwood Park - 9:00 A.M. to Noon

Volunteers needed! Tasks will include tree preservation and habitat restoration through the removal of non-native invasive species. Volunteers will be pulling and cutting vines that are smothering native species. Minimum age with adult supervision: 10; without: 13.

Burke Centre Library - 1:00 P.M. to 4:00 P.M.

Volunteers are needed to help with the dedication of the Burke Centre Library’s “The Book Burrow,?? an area outside the building where youth service programs may be held. Volunteers will read books to young children, play some musical instruments etc. Minimum age with adult supervision: 12; without: 18

Community Residences - 9:00 A.M. to 1:00 P.M.

Volunteers will be landscaping, mulching, and cleaning-up the exterior and interior of this home, as well as doing some minor painting. The goal of the project is to beautify the home for its residents, all of whom struggle with various intellectual disabilities. Minimum age with adult supervision: 13; without: 17.

Pohick Stream Valley - 10:00 A.M. to Noon

Show your skills at the Pohick Stream Valley Park by participating in a tree preservation and habitat restoration project through the removal of non-native invasive species. Volunteers will pull and cut vines that are smothering native species. Minimum age with adult supervision: 10; without: 13.

Woodglen Lake Park - 9:30 A.M. to 11:30 P.M.

Hard-working team needed to assist in tree preservation and habitat restoration through the removal of non-native invasive species. Volunteers will be pulling and cutting vines that are smothering native species. Minimum age with adult supervision: 10; without: 13.

 

Looking to Get Involved in Your Community? These Volunteers Opportunities are Available Year Round

Supervisor Cook’s Community Engagement Initiative, in addition to offering information and training for those who would like to take a more active lead in their community, is a broad invitation to everyone – young and old – to consider volunteering and getting more involved in a variety of areas.

Parents readily become volunteers when it’s time to be a room parent or coach a child’s team or lead a Scout group.  And once they get involved, they quite naturally end up doing more.  But what about those of you who don’t have children as your reason to volunteer?

There are dozens of opportunities to get involved!  Community clean-up days, placing Chesapeake Bay Watershed stickers on storm drains, shelving books at the library, tutoring, checking in on the elderly, and stocking shelves at a food pantry are all options.  Museums, animal shelters, the parks and Neighborhood Watch groups are always looking for help.  If you have a particular cause that is important to you, do something to help that group. 

If you’re retired and have a special skill or knowledge from your years of employment, you might want to share that with others.  If you can’t commit to something on a regular basis, try doing a seasonal activity such as those organized by Volunteer Fairfax; or even one that occurs once every ten years, like helping to promote the Census in Fairfax County. 

Want to Protect Your Community with Neighborhood Watch? Here’s How:

It only takes a small amount of your time to observe and report suspicious activities in your neighborhood, but by doing so you can be one of thousands of citizens who are contributing to the prevention of crime.

Citizens are trained to be alert to any suspicious or unusual activity that is occurring close to home. To designate your active participation in the Neighborhood Watch program, the police will provide you with decals to be placed on windows in your home to deter would-be criminals. For more information or to get started contact the West Springfield District Station at 703-644-7377.

Serve Your Neighborhood and Keep Up With the Latest Books:

The libraries throughout the Braddock District are always looking for more volunteers and by sharing your time and talent you can make a big difference in the quality of library service in your community.  Library volunteers range from ages 12 to 94 and work side by side with staff in every Library activity. You can help check books in and out, sort and shelve, assist with special projects, shelf-reading (Adopt-a-Shelf!), gardening, and much more. To get involved visit: http://www.fairfaxcounty.gov/library/volunteer/ where you will find more information and a volunteer form, you can also call 703-324-8332.

Love Animals? Volunteering at the Shelter May be for You:

As a new volunteer with the shelter, you can share your time and talents in either the dog kennels or cat room, where you will assist in the socialization of the animals available for adoption. Once accepted into the volunteer program you can help in many more areas, including: as an administrative assistant, a foster care provider or a small mammal assistant among other tasks.  To get involved visit: http://www.fairfaxcounty.gov/police/animal/volunteers.htm where you will find more information and a volunteer form, you can also call 703-324-0207.

Build Community Spirit By Holding a Parade:

Having a parade as part of a larger Halloween or Fourth of July Celebration is a great way to get to know your neighbor and build a stronger community. Here’s what you need to know before you get started. This is a two-step authorization process: VDOT authorizes first, then Fairfax County Police. More information and a permit application form can be found by calling 703-383-2888 or here: http://www.virginiadot.org/business/resources/NOVA_FairfaxPermits/FairfaxPermitsRoadUsePermitGuidelines.pdf

 

Fairfax County Restoration Project

On October 13, 2009 from 9:30 A.M. to 4:30 P.M., this Public Private Partnership concerned with environmental issues in Fairfax County will be holding a seminar at the Government Center on reforesting and restoring watersheds. The event is open to anyone, but seating is limited and the cost is $25 per person. To register, or for more information, please go to www.fcrpp3.org.

In addition to five speakers there will be two workshops and one demonstration that will include trees and plants from Earth Sangha. There will also be Q&A time with Charles Smith, Fairfax County Parks Authority & Daniel Schwartz, Northern Virginia Soil & Water Conservation District.


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