9 vital questions to ask before embarking on a volunteer vacation
Volunteer vacations are popular with gap-year students, retired seniors, and millions of people in between. Perhaps you’re just starting to travel again, for the first time in a long time, considering the pandemic, and you’re thinking about a volunteer vacation.
AFC Ann Arbor, local organizations launch new community youth program in Ypsilanti
Association Football Club Ann Arbor and Washtenaw My Brother’s Keeper, in partnership with the Hart & Tay Train Foundation, the Rob Murphy Foundation and the Mighty Oak Project, have launched a new community youth program called CLR Academy.
Controversial mining operation ignoring orders to halt
A Tennessee gravel and sand mining operator has been ignoring a cease and desist letter for months, and opponents say its continued construction on the banks of North America's most biodiverse river may already be harming wildlife. The Duck River in Middle Tennessee has the most species of any river on the continent, Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency Assistant Chief of Biodiversity Pandy Upchurch said, with at least 151 species of fish and 55 species of mussels including eight federally endangered species. The operators received some permits, including from the Tennessee Department of Conservation and Environment, but withdrew their application for a permit from the Tennessee Valley Authority, which controls that river system.news.yahoo.com
Habitat for Humanity of Huron Valley kicks off 2021 Women Build home
Volunteers for Women Build 2021 pose at the Simby family home in Ypsilanti. YPSILANTI, Mich. – Habitat for Humanity of Huron Valley began work on its 2021 Women Build home with volunteers on Friday. A volunteer helps with renovations on the 2021 Women Build home on March 26, 2021. (Habitat for Humanity of Huron Valley)“We are excited to safely host volunteers with Health & Safety Guidelines related to COVID-19,” Borst continued. To learn more about Women Build or to sign up, visit www.h4h.org/women-build.
Missing 93-year-old woman found dead near Ann Arbor, police say
PITTSFIELD TOWNSHIP, Mich. – Pittsfield Township resident Xing Pan was discovered on Sunday by a volunteer who had joined efforts to locate her after her family reported her missing. Pan, who suffered from dementia, was found deceased by a volunteer who joined the search party. According to authorities, she was known to frequently walk in the area of Carpenter Road and Packard Road. The Pittsfield Township Police Department conducted surveillance video checks, area searches, K9 searches, helicopter aerial searches, drone flights, used FLIR technology and more to locate Pan. Ad“Please keep the family in your thoughts and prayers,” the Pittsfield Township Police Department wrote in a Facebook post.
City of Ann Arbor seeks volunteers to help identify, monitor amphibian populations
ANN ARBOR – Want to get outside and try something different this spring? The city of Ann Arbor’s Natural Area Preservation is searching for volunteers to help monitor frog, toad and salamander populations in the city’s parks and nature areas. Salamander Survey Kickoff and TrainingLearn to monitor Ann Arbor’s five species of salamanders. AdThe Saturday Zoom session will run from noon to 2 p.m.Frog & Toad Survey Kickoff and TrainingLearn to identify frogs and toads by eye and ear, and select which route you’d like to survey. The Saturday Zoom session will run from 2:30-4:30 p.m.
Here’s how you can keep your kids entertained in a healthy, fun way
Parents know that keeping kids active and engaged has never been more challenging than in the last year. Amid the COVID-19 pandemic, kids have been enduring so much while experiencing many of the life changes of growing up. The YMCA of Metropolitan Detroit hosts a variety of programs for kids that are both virtual and in-person. For example, Its Girls on the Run program works to empower young girls in the community. Girls on the Run is a youth development and social and emotional program for girls in grades (three) through eight,” Picoharczyk said.
U-M’s Student Life launches new website to help students find community during pandemic
'The Cube' is motionless in the video portraying an empty U-M campus. ANN ARBOR – Life during the coronavirus pandemic has been turned upside down, and for college students whose normal experience relies so heavily on social interactions, this year in isolation has left many feeling disconnected. In response, University of Michigan’s Student Life recently launched Find Community, a new website geared toward helping students connect with one another. The site has suggestions for a variety of interests, including those who want to:Join a student organizationJoin a fraternity or sororityConnect with others and exerciseConnect with others and volunteerLearn about leadership opportunitiesConnect with resources during a difficult time“Meeting people, participating in Student Orgs, volunteering and just getting involved is so essential to the campus equation,” Susan Thwing from Student Life Communications wrote A4 via email. “Student Life’s new Find Community website is available to help by providing many options for getting involved either virtually or through activities with safety protocols in place.”For more information, visit www.studentlife.umich.edu/find-community.
Ann Arbor’s Volunteer Burn Crew training begins this week
ANN ARBOR – It’s nearing the end of February, and you know what that means in Ann Arbor: controlled burn spring season. The volunteer program with the city’s Natural Area Preservation will kick off virtual training on Thursday, Feb. 18 from noon to 5 p.m. The Spring 2021 Controlled Ecological Burn season begins on Friday, Feb. 19 and ends on Friday, May 29. During the Spring 2021 Controlled Burn Season, NAP has permits to conduct burns in the following locations: Arbor Hills Nature Area, Argo Nature Area, Berkshire Creek Nature Area, Bird Hills Nature Area, Black Pond Woods Nature Area, Botsford Nature Area, Buhr Park, Buttonbush Nature Area, Cedar Bend Nature Area, Earhart Nature Area, Gallup Park, Huron Parkway Nature Area, Kuebler Langford Nature Area, Leslie Woods Nature Area, Marshall Nature Area, Maryfield Wildwood Park, Miller Nature Area, Scarlett Mitchell Nature Area, Stapp Nature Area, Sunset Brooks Nature Area, Swift Run Park, and the NAP office at 3875 E. Huron River Drive. The local fire department is notified before each burn, and cell phones and two-way radios are carried by staff conducting a burn.
Girls on the Run of Southeastern Michigan launches Spring 2021 season
(Girls on the Run of Southeastern Michigan)Girls on the Run Spring 2021 programming will practice enhanced safety measures due to the pandemic. ANN ARBOR – Registration will be opening soon for Girls on the Run of Southeastern Michigan’s spring season. This will be the organization’s 19th spring season, and its purpose goes far beyond running. Virtual programming will be available for the Spring 2021 season. (Girls on the Run of Southeastern Michigan)The program begins the week of March 22 and lasts eight weeks.
Washtenaw County, St. Joe’s Ann Arbor open mass COVID-19 vaccination site at Eastern Michigan University
YPSILANTI, Mich. – The Washtenaw County Health Department and St. Joseph Mercy Ann Arbor hospital have partnered to staff a new COVID-19 vaccination clinic at Eastern Michigan University. “Running this community vaccination clinic is a huge undertaking,” Dr. Juan Luis Marquez, medical director at the Washtenaw County Health Department said in a statement. “We are grateful to partner with St. Joseph Mercy Ann Arbor to both continue and expand our community vaccination efforts. Registration will be done through the Washtenaw County Health Department. A member of the national guard is seen assisting in COVID-19 vaccination efforts at Eastern Michigan University in Ypsilanti.
Focus: HOPE in need of volunteers to deliver food to seniors
Focus: HOPE urgently needs volunteers to assist with their Food for Seniors program. They rely almost completely on volunteers to assemble food packages for low-income seniors and to deliver food to homebound older adults in Wayne, Oakland, Macomb, and Washtenaw counties. In partnership with federal and state agencies, Focus: HOPE provides more than 42,000 seniors with monthly food packages to help meet basic needs. A Message from Focus: HOPEAs a truly difficult year for all of us has ended, here at Focus: HOPE we are truly grateful to have HOPE for 2021 and beyond. Because of you, we are ready to bring HOPE to 2021 through our work here at Focus: HOPE.
Metro Detroit students serve others to honor legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.
SOUTHFIELD, Mich. – Martin Luther King Jr. Day on Monday also marks the 26th anniversary of the Day of Service, honoring the Civil Rights leader’s legacy. Despite COVID restrictions, some students in Southfield honored that commitment by leading by example. At MacArthur K-8 University Academy, community service is the center of everything the students do. Students and teachers work together on community service projects all year round, but on Martin Luther King Jr. Day, those service projects are highlighted. Observed every year on the third Monday of January, Martin Luther King Jr. Day is the only federal holiday designated as a national Day of Service to encourage everyone to volunteer.
Here’s how you can volunteer with Ann Arbor Parks in February
Lend your hand at several events in February in Ann Arbor’s natural areas. The city of Ann Arbor Natural Area Preservation runs regular volunteer events to restore the city’s parks and natural areas while fostering a concern for the environment among residents. Then join the Stewardship Network’s Huron Arbor Cluster for an informal discussion on a monthly topic with volunteer and professional land stewards, plus others interested in nature. Join NAP to restore this valuable habitat by removing invasive shrubs at Leslie Park. Format: Zoom MeetingFire is used as a restoration tool in many of Ann Arbor’s natural areas.
Focus: HOPE donates thousands of meals to seniors across Metro Detroit
DETROIT – With so many people out of work, the need is great this holiday season. Local organizations -- like Focus: HOPE -- are trying to ease the burden one meal at a time. Loretta Brown is one of hundreds -- yes, hundreds -- of volunteers working with Focus: HOPE to bring food to low income seniors across Metro Detroit. “So we’ll have the turkey, produce, stuffing -- all things for a holiday meal -- and not just for Christmas, but hopefully a few more days before and after that,” said Focus: HOPE Food Program Director Frank Kubik,Saturday, Focus: Hope delivered 1,400 special holiday boxes. “They said, ‘No problem!’ They stepped up and said they’ll do what needs to be done.”You can donate to Focus: HOPE on its official website here.
U-M student, volunteer at Arbor Hospice to perform virtual concert on Christmas Eve
ANN ARBOR – University of Michigan student and music volunteer at Arbor Hospice, Sherwin Navaz, will be performing a virtual piano concert on Christmas Eve at 7 p.m. “As an Arbor Hospice music volunteer, Navaz brings comfort and peace to patients with serious and terminal illnesses,” read a news release. “Often, the sounds of his piano stir emotions and memories that otherwise feel like a lifetime away.”U-M student Sherwin Navaz will be putting on a free virtual concert on Christmas Eve. Viewers on Christmas Eve can expect to hear a diverse selection of music, from Beethoven to Chopin and The Sound of Music to The Beatles. To learn more about Arbor Hospice, visit www.arborhospice.org.
Focus: HOPE is looking for volunteers to deliver food to seniors
Then please consider volunteering with Focus: HOPE, who especially wants help with their Senior Holiday Delivery on December 19th! They’re looking for volunteers to pack and deliver food boxes to seniors across Southeast Michigan. Focus: HOPE distributes food packages to over 42,000 seniors throughout Southeast Michigan each month. Senior Holiday DeliveryDuring their annual Senior Holiday Food Delivery day, volunteers deliver holiday food & paper supplies to 1,400 homebound seniors across Southeast Michigan. Because of you, we are ready to bring HOPE to 2021 through our work here at Focus: HOPE.
Boy Scouts help Ann Arbor food drive set single-day collection record
ANN ARBOR – Members of Boy Scout Troop 27 of St. Francis Parish helped the St. Francis Parish Food Drive break its single-day collection record on Saturday. According to event coordinator and Troop 27 alumnus Zach Damon, Troop 27 collected 591 bags and boxes of food and personal items -- enough to help over 100 local families. Members of the National Eagle Scout Association NESA Alumni of Michigan were also on site over the weekend. All year long, the church collects non-perishable foods from its members and from local residents. According to Washtenaw County’s food rescue program Food Gatherers, its 170 network partners have reported a 30-300% increase in community members seeking food assistance since the COVID-19 outbreak began in March.
Food Gatherers’ Eileen Spring named local United Way’s Woman of the Year
ANN ARBOR – Food Gatherers president and CEO, Eileen Spring, has been named United Way of Washtenaw County’s 2021 Woman of the Year. The award is given by UWWC’s Women United group to women who demonstrate leadership and commitment to the local community. Spring will be honored at UWWC’s annual “Power of the Purse” event on March 10, 2021, which will be held virtually due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Spring was central in developing a food security plan in response to the increased need due to the pandemic. From June 2019 to June 2020, Food Gatherers distributed 7.8 million pounds of food to those in need.
Volunteer in these Ann Arbor parks in November
ANN ARBOR – The city of Ann Arbor’s Natural Area Preservation is looking for volunteers for its November events to restore and protect Ann Arbor’s natural areas. To preregister, sign up using Rec-1 by noon on the Friday before the weekend the event will be taking place. The exact meeting location will be provided once you register. Stewardship Workday at Sunset Brooks Nature AreaWhen: Saturday, Nov. 14, 1–4 p.m. Preregistration through Rec-1 using this link is required as space is limited.
Arbor Hospice volunteers make ornaments for annual holiday fundraiser
ANN ARBOR – Despite the COVID-19 pandemic, one group of volunteers is helping raise funds for a local nonprofit by making handmade ornaments. For 25 years, volunteers with Arbor Hospice have created handmade Hearts of Remembrance ornaments during the holiday season as part of the nonprofit’s signature fundraising campaign, which raises $50,000 annually for the center. Arbor Hospice serves the greater Washtenaw area. “Arbor Hospice and the Arbor Hospice Foundation are so grateful and proud of this team of extraordinary women who’ve continued to work on these Hearts of Remembrance gifts during the COVID-19 pandemic,” Judy Vindici, director of philanthropy for Arbor Hospice said in a statement. Arbor Hospice recommends making a $25, tax-deductible gift for the first heart and $20 for each additional heart ordered together.
Woman hands out produce, milk to thousands of families every Friday in Hamtramck
HAMTRAMCK, Mich. – Every Friday, a woman sets up shop in Hamtramck to give boxes of produce and gallons to milk to anyone who needs them. Like many people during the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, Erica Owens wanted to help. She learned through Food Rescue Detroit that she could pass out boxes of food to people in need. “The real reason was Mohamed,” Owens said. “When I got a buck her her, like, ‘You need some help?’ Like, volunteer and stuff like that,” Mohamed Abdulla said.
Volunteer group helps low-income families celebrate Thanksgiving
Volunteer group helps low-income families celebrate Thanksgiving Volunteer organization Martha's Table is making sure 2,200 families have all the supplies they need for a nutritious Thanksgiving. CBS News' Kylie Atwood reports.cbsnews.com