Day of Caring & In-Person Volunteer Opportunities are Back!
Volunteering is a vital part of Granite United Way's work throughout our community and the COVID-19 pandemic has limited the opportunities we and our agency partners have been able to safely offer over the past two years. As restrictions are lifted and vaccines are more widely available, Granite United Way has taken every opportunity to re-introduce volunteering in a safe and healthy way.
In April, Granite United Way’s Central Region held a special Day of Caring on Earth Day. Students from Kindergarten all the way through 8th grade participated in volunteer projects throughout their community. Some projects included making cards for the local senior center, washing fire trucks for the Laconia Fire Department, picking up trash along the roadside and public trails, and cleaning the recreational areas of the Boys and Girls Club.
When this volunteer event was proposed to the local school district, the administration was excited to participate and thrilled by the idea that students had an opportunity to plan their own volunteer projects for their community.
“It’s important that we show the younger generation the importance of taking care of our community,” said Dr. Brian Connelly, Superintendent, and Principal of Jennie D Blake Elementary School. “It has become an underlying theme at our school that if we take care of ourselves and others, the world becomes a better place for everyone.”
In May, our Northern Region and Merrimack County residents participated in the annual Stamp Out Hunger Food Drive. In partnership with the National Association of Letter Carriers, to collect food donations across our service areas. To participate, residents of New Hampshire had the opportunity to leave nonperishable food items by their mailbox for donation. Their letter carriers would then collect the items and bring them to the drop-off location for the event. By the end of the event, a total of 5112 pounds of food was collected and donated to the local food shelters.
“Without our volunteers, projects like this wouldn’t be possible,” said Laura Boucher, Granite United Way’s Area Manager of the Northern Region. “When we come together as a community, we are stronger and create greater change.”
In August, our Greater Seacoast Region worked with volunteers from Lonza Biologics to stuff backpacks for their K-Ready Kids initiative. These backpacks are filled with age-appropriate books, materials to help build fine motor skills, and parent resources. Nearly 1,000 backpacks have already been stuffed and are ready to be distributed to local schools, childcare agencies, and Headstart to connect with the children most in need.
“I believe that volunteering with Granite United Way is an invaluable service to the community, especially when it comes to stabilizing the futures for these children," said Bob Toriello, Manufacturing Manager at Lonza Biologics. " Granite United Way provides us with an opportunity to give back and strengthen the families and communities around us.”
Finally and most exciting, this September, we are thrilled to announce that our largest volunteer effort, Day of Caring, will be back across all of our regions!
Day of Caring is a community-wide effort that connects volunteers with local nonprofits in their community to complete a wishlist project. Some projects that take place on this day include gardening, painting, cleaning up parks and summer camps, reading to children, and visiting with the elderly.
Day of Caring is taking place in each of our regions on the following days:
- North Country: Wednesday, September 7th
- Northern NH: Thursday, September 8th
- Central Region: Monday, September 12th
- Merrimack County: Wednesday, September 14th
- Southern Region: Thursday, September 15th
- Upper Valley: Friday, September 16th
- Greater Seacoast Region: Tuesday, September 20th
If you are a nonprofit in one of our seven regions and would like to set up a volunteer project click here.
If you are a volunteer and would like to sign up for a volunteer in one of our seven regions, click here.