By Jody & Jodi Ann Cameron, Comm. Serv. Chairpersons
FEBRUARY 2007 -- No matter how small or large your Grange is everyone can make a difference in their community.
The key to any good community service project is planning. Determine how many people in your Grange are able to contribute to a project. This will give you an idea on the size project you may want to tackle. Be careful not to take on something too large for your Grange to handle. Some people may not be able to physically help with some of the heavier labor tasks but many people can help make advertising flyers, bake cookies, or sponsor a walker in a walk-a-thon. Remember, it is always best to include as many people as possible.
To start the planning process we have listed below a few ideas you may want to consider when selecting a community service project. But remember, this is just a list of suggestions, you my choose any project that your Grange likes or is better suited to your community.
• American Red Cross- blood drives, disaster kits, educational opportunities • Habitat for Humanity • Support the projects of the State Grange Foster Care Program • Veteran’s Hospitals - fund drives, transportation needs, hygiene kits • Volunteer at hospitals • United Way - they have various projects like the local clean-up projects that need assistance • Food Pantries - Support these organizations all year round- not just the holidays • Schools - Find out if your local schools need volunteers to help with community service and other projects. Students can also assist you with local clean-ups, suppers or other activities in your Grange. • Volunteer at your local public radio or television station - they are always seeking people to assist with their fundraising efforts. • Collect for charities and local walk-a-thons • Make quilts for babies affected by AIDS • Support various telethons- either financially or by working on the committees • Provide educational programs for members of your community - AARP 55 Alive, Stay Alive, Drive 25, Identity Theft, Nutritional Information. • Holiday Gift Baskets - for local needy families or members of the elderly in your community. • Pet Food Drive - supply pet food for the elderly or assist with their pets. • Local Public Libraries - Host a book drive or volunteer to read to youngsters at the library • Postcards - Send postcards to elderly shut-ins in your Grange and your community. • Courts - Most court houses have programs that assist victims of child abuse or domestic violence by providing emergency overnight bags • School Supplies - raise money or collect school supplies for donation to local schools. Remember, that mid-year is often a difficult time for schools. • Holidays - remember those less fortunate by holding a free supper or raising gifts for needy families.
Please contact us if you have questions or need assistance in starting your new community service projects.