January 2016 - NYC Family Volunteer Opportunities

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January 2016 - New York 

MLK Days of Service
Volunteer New York!
Date/Time: Most opportunities are on Saturday, January 16, although a few are Friday, January 15 or Sunday, January 17
Location: Locations throughout Westchester
The MLK Day of Service empowers individuals, strengthens communities, bridges barriers, creates solutions to social problems, and moves us closer to Dr. King's vision of a beloved community. Family-friendly opportunities are available to families who wish to volunteer together during Days of Service. This is an easy way to volunteer as a family and impart lessons about the importance of giving back and volunteering at an early age.
Ages: Varies, depending on opportunity. There are several opportunities for families with children four and older.
Time Commitment: Varies, depending on opportunity.
Contact: info@volunteernewyork.org, 914.948.4452.
Winter Package Delivery
Date/Time: Sunday, January 31, 10am - noon
Location: At the home of an elderly Dorot client - typically Upper East or Upper West side
You and your family can warm up the day of a senior. Deliver a food package and visit with an older person.
Ages: Everyone can participate
Time Commitment: Two hours
Contact:  Shelley Levine, SLevine@dorotusa.org, 914.441.5051. Registration is available online.
MLK Day of Service - Coastal Cleanup
NYC Parks Department
Date/Time: Monday, January 18, 10am - 1pm
Location: Idlewild Park, Queens, 149 Ave. at Rockaway Blvd., Jamaica Bay between James Brown Place and Brookville Blvd
Volunteer with the Stewardship Team at Idlewild Park on Martin Luther King Jr. Day! Volunteers will help protect and maintain the wetlands of Idlewild Park by removing floatable debris. Volunteers will be trained in removal and cleanup techniques. Come dressed in sturdy boots or shoes, warm layers, long pants, and clothing that can get dirty. 
Ages: All ages; children must be accompanied by an adult, and an adult must sign consent forms for children who are volunteering.
Time Commitment: Three hours
Contact: Space is limited and registration is required.

2016 MLK Weekend of Service
Food Bank for New York City
Date/Time: Friday, January 16 through Monday, January 18, times vary.
Location: There are opportunities in all five boroughs
Now in its 3rd consecutive year, Food Bank For New York City will celebrate Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and his legacy with a 3-day weekend of volunteer service. During this weekend, volunteers will come together to bring to life Dr. King's vision of uniting people of all ages and backgrounds to strengthen their communities through service. There are two projects for families with younger children: Pantry Distribution in Chelsea and Winter Wonderland in Hunt's Point. There are two additional opportunities for families with teens 13 and older: Pantry Makeover in Jackson Heights and Urban Farming Training School Beautification.
Ages: Varies by opportunity
Time Commitment: One to five hours, depending on opportunity
Contact: Volunteer Engagement Team at 212.566.7855 x8350 or volunteer@foodbanknyc.org.
Soup Kitchen - Service With a Smile!
HUC-JIR Soup Kitchen
Date/Time: Every Monday (4:15 - 5pm set up and education, 5 - 6pm serve guests, 6- 6:45pm clean up and wrap up session)
Location: 1 West 4th Street at Hebrew Union College
HUC-JIR operates a soup kitchen each Monday evening. Volunteers are needed to help set up, serve meals and clean up. There is an area where guests can pick up donated clothing and toiletries, and volunteers are needed to work in this area, as well. Volunteers can feel free to bring donations of toiletries, coats, socks and clothing.
Ages: Ages 10 and up accompanied by adult
Time Commitment: Two and one-half hours
Contact: hucjirsoupkitchen@gmail.com (please email to check on availability)
Host a Pajama or Book Drive
Pajama Program - One Million Good Nights Campaign
Date/Time: Flexible
Location: Your home or community
Winter is considered the "danger season" for children in shelter and temporary housing. The Pajama Program is a nonprofit that provides new pajamas and new books to children in need through a nationwide network of service agencies. The One Million Good Nights campaign has the goal of providing one million new pairs of pajamas, and one million new books, to children in need. Your family can help by hosting a donation drive!
  • Pajamas should be new/unused and a complete set or nightgown.
  • Decide on an age range to collect (all ages, infant, children to age 5, children 6 - 12, teens, etc.)
  • Posters, signs and brochures can be used for invitations or to decorate the party space, and may be downloaded from the Pajama Program website.
  • Once your drive is complete, report your donation to the Pajama Program.
  • Within 7 days, Pajama Program will contact you with a receiving organization in your area that will accept the donations, and help you get the donation into the hands of the children they serve.
Ages: Everyone can participate
Time Commitment: Varies
Contact: 212.716.9757
Distribution and Meal Service at the Action Center Hammels
New York Cares
Date/Time: Saturday, January 16, 10am - 1pm
Location: The Rockaways, Queens
The Action Center for Education and Community Development, Inc., developed in 2001, is a nonprofit organization committed to creating and facilitating model programs geared towards stopping at-risk behaviors for disadvantaged youth and their families within the communities served by the Action Center. In addition, the Action Center provides direct and indirect services to over 33,000 Rockaway families, and general services to the entire 105,000 Rockaway base. Help unload supplies, sort, prepare food and serve families and individuals in the Rockaways. Volunteers will also assist in the Saturday distribution of goods and hot food as needed. Please wear comfortable shoes and remain patient and flexible as needs may change on site. In order to participate in NYCares projects, you must register and attend a brief orientation.
Ages: Children 11 and up, accompanied by a parent (parents must sign a waiver in advance)
Time Commitment: Three hours
Contact: Project Sign-up Hotline, 212.402.1680, info@newyorkcares.org
Mulchfest 2016 TreeCycle!
City of New York Parks & Recreation
Date/Time: Saturday or Sunday, January 9 & 10, 10am - 2pm
Location: Check the website for locations
Join the New York City Department of Parks and Recreation, the Department of Sanitation and GreeNYC to recycle your Christmas trees into wood chips. These wood chips are used to nourish trees and plants on streets and gardens citywide. More than 30,000 trees were recycled last year. Bring your tree to a chipping location on January 9 or 10, or a drop-off location and the city will recycle it for you later. The Sanitation Department also conducts curbside collections. Please remember to remove all lights and ornaments before bringing a tree to a MulchFest site.   
MillionTreesNYC is also looking for volunteers to help spread the mulch generated during this event around young street tree beds to help insulate these trees from the cold weather, retain moisture, and provide a decorative addition to neighborhood blocks. You can also pick up bags of mulch to take home with you and use on the trees on your street. Click for more information and to register for one of these volunteer events. 
Ages: All ages can participate
Time Commitment: Varies
Intergenerational Chess
Date/Time: Winter/Spring 2016
Location: DOROT - 171 West 85th Street
Share your love of the game and bring a smile to a senior! Students and Dorot Seniors will get to know each other and play chess together. Chess Masters will demonstrate different strategies at each session. Refreshments will be served. Students must be in 5th-12th grade and understand the game of chess, the different chess pieces and how to move them.  
Ages: Volunteers must be in 5th-12th grade.
Time Commitment: One hour per week. Students must commit to a minimum of 15 sessions.
Contact: Coordinator of Family and Youth Volunteer Services, slevine@dorotusa.org or 917.441.5051
Monday, January 18th is Martin Luther King Day of Service
"Everybody can be great because everybody can serve"

 Monday, January 18th is a school and bank holiday to honor the life and legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Instead of just making it a day OFF, make it a day ON and consider participating in a service project with your family. GenerationOn and the Points of Light Foundation, along with the US government and the City of New York provide tips and resources to begin a conversation about social justice around the holiday.

Visit www.nationalservice.gov/mlkday or www.pointsoflight.org/signature-events/martin-luther-king-jr-day-service 

Almost Instant Kindness Quests
Doing Good Together
Date/Time: Anytime
Location: Your home or other convenient location
Follow up on your family's kindness resolutions with these Almost Instant Kindness Quests from Doing Good Together. Print and post this cheat sheet on your refrigerator or cork board and your family will have a readily available list of almost instant kindness activities to choose from. Check out the Doing Good Together project page for more ideas for your family kindness practice.
Ages: Everyone can participate
Time Commitment: Varies
Contact: mail@doinggoodtogether.org

Do you love what we do at Doing Good Together™? Please tell others! When it comes to family volunteering and lessons in kindness, no other nonprofit so uniquely empowers  families to raise generous, compassionate, and civic-minded children. Please rate or review our nonprofit on the GreatNonprofits website and help share our mission with others!


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This list was compiled by Doing Good Together™ (www.doinggoodtogether.org)
 When calling to volunteer for any of the opportunities listed above, please let the coordinator know you found it through this listing. You are encouraged to ask any questions you may have of the sponsoring organization before committing to a project.
Disclaimer: This list is provided as a service to families. Inclusion of organizations in this listing does not imply affiliation, endorsement or quality assurance on the part of Doing Good Together.™ Doing Good Together™ bears no responsibility whatsoever for the activities and actions of the listed organizations. 

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