National Make a Difference Day
National Make a Difference Day falls on the fourth Saturday in October (Oct. 23rd this year). Community organizations join together to make a difference, whether that’s large or small. For over 20 years, USA Weekend (weekend paper no longer printed) and Points of Light (a national volunteer organization) sponsored National Make a Difference Day, making it the most important community service day. Though the organizations no longer fund the event, it is still celebrated throughout communities. Read on to find volunteer opportunities in the Treasure Valley to make a difference in our neighborhoods.
The day was established in 1992 in the United States and is now celebrated in about 30 countries. Known as the “National Day of Doing Good,” it celebrates how volunteering can impact your community and the positive impact on the individual who does the volunteering.
Treasure Valley Volunteer Opportunities
Though I didn’t see organized Boise community activities going on this weekend when I searched the internet (am I missing something?), I found many volunteer opportunities in the Boise area. JustServe.org connects organizations with volunteers. JustServ.org is a great site that I’ve used before. You can search by the organization if you are interested in helping the, Idaho Humane Society, for example. You can search by a skill set you would like to use. I searched for “crafts” and found eight opportunities in Boise. Unfortunately, when I searched “web design,” no luck for me this time; however, in the past, I matched with two organizations that needed my help.
I searched for some of our local communities. Each result radius for all of the towns was “within 5 miles.” So, for example, Boise had 59 opportunities within 5 miles; Caldwell has 55 volunteer positions within five miles.
- Boise 59
- Caldwell 55
- Eagle 41
- Fruitland 10
- Garden City 70
- Kuna 13
- Meridian 40
- Middleton 55
- Mountain Home 6
- Nampa 20
- Star 17
As you can see every community has many ways to volunteer. If you are willing to drive more than five miles the numbers increase. For example, Meridian’s went from 40 to 114 leads when I changed the search radius to 10 miles.
Were you worried about COVID? No problem. A checkbox lets you search for “volunteers participate from home.” The results led to just as many leads since the radius can be wider than five miles (no travel).
Here is a small sample of projects available:
- Help transcribe correspondence for the Smithsonian
- Sew face masks
- Teach classes on early breast cancer detection (online or in-person)
- Mentor High School students on career advice
- Help with research projects
- Make and Donate Wellness Kits for Ronald McDonald House
- Deliver Student Packets for Refugee English Language Center
- Volunteer for the Salvation Army (multiple locations) You can even volunteer as a group
- Scouting for Food
- The list goes on
Don’t forget to include Bluebird Hospice on your list of potential volunteer opportunities. Check out our page and get in touch to find out what a rewarding experience it is to be a hospice volunteer.
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